Los Angeles has some of the best live music venues in the city. Take these, for example.
But what if one prefers to enjoy bands in the cozier settings of a bar or restaurant? Here, then, are the 10 best L.A. bars and restaurants with live music.
A pub in the truest sense, Casey’s menu rocks the basics and then some: mini pot pies, wings, fries and even French Dips, from Cole’s (which has the same owner).
When the back room features live music, it really rocks too, with everything from tribute bands to DTLA art outfits. 613 S Grand Ave, Downtown, 90017. (213) 629-2353
Mexican restaurant Velvet Margarita has always featured top-notch DJs, but they've just started featuring bands on their patio during their “Cahuenga Block Party,” a summer shindig co-promoted with St. Felix (where yours truly deejays).
Those parties have been so successful, we've learned, that Velvet will have more live rock and roll on its patio this summer. 1612 N Cahuenga Blvd, Hollywood, 90028. (323) 469-2000
8. Good Times at Davey Waynes
If The Brady kids had a wild alcohol-soaked house party while Mike and Carol were out of town, it would feel something like this themed Houston Brothers bar, right down to the live music stage.
Retro-style rockin' goes down here weekly, and the colorful drinks served compliment the music in a very groovy way, as Marsha might say. Plus, there’s a barbeque out on the patio that would make Sam the Butcher proud. 1611 N El Centro Ave, Hollywood, 90028. (323) 962-3804
Loaded is aptly named, both for the liquor and the flavorful menu. Meanwhile, live rocking goes down nightly.
Just don’t overload here, or those skinny jeans and tees won't fit. 6377 Hollywood Blvd, Hollywood, 90028, (323) 963-4655
6. Dresden Room
The Dresden Room is an L.A. institution for food, drink and jazzy, pizzazzy live sounds. The main attraction, of course, is dynamic geriatric duo Marty and Elyane.
They still rock the Bees Gees' “Stayin' Alive” if you request it. But don't ask anyone here about the movie Swingers. That's too old school. 1760 N Vermont Ave, Los Feliz, 90027. (323) 665-4294
5. El Cid
The famed Flamenco shows here are still stompin', as are the Sunday Brunches, but the live music nights are what continue to attract ravenous crooners and jammers to this Silver Lake landmark.
Monday open mics are a mixed bag, while Tuesdays get jazzy with a supperclub vibe. We love the Tapas and twang twofer of Honky Tonk Hacienda (
monthly weekly Thursdays). Occasional burlesque babe-a-thons and local rock bills spice up Cid’s calendar regularly, as well. 4212 Sunset Blvd, Silver Lake, CA. (323) 668-0318
4. Rockwell Table & Stage
You'll find serious talent here. Though the critically-lauded “For the Record” series has moved on, Rockwell continues to book great entertainment with a quirky and nostalgic bent — Molly Ringwald, Jeff Goldblum and Freddie Mercury-themed burlesque, for example. 1714 N Vermont Ave, Los Feliz, 90027. (323) 669-1550
3. Viva Cantina
The Burbank boite has live rockin’ of the country, punk and rockabilly varieties pretty regularly, with the Weekly’s own Jonny Whiteside hosting the foot-stompin hoedown The Messaround on Sundays.
Viva’s food is zingy Mexican, but the tastes on stage are usually hotter than any chile-infused offering on the menu. 900 W Riverside Dr, Burbank, 91506. (818) 845-2425
We have no idea who started the whole mason jar cocktail thing — or how it became synonymous with “hipsters” — but we do know at Villains, getting a refreshing, fruit-infused libation in old-timey glassware makes sense. Old medicine bottles adorn the place after all.
Yep, this is the kind of bar you wear suspenders to; the bluesy and hillbilly-esque acts on stage seem fond of ‘em, after all. And a belt with extra notches. As for the menu? Carb-loaded bliss. 1356 Palmetto St, Downtown, 90013. (213) 613-0766
1. The Redwood
This “pirate bar” has become one of the best little live music spots in LA, especially when it comes to gritty garage rock and punk. The sound is pretty good (so long as you like it loud) and the food is equally badass.
Their crispy beer-battered fish and chips seems to be everyone’s fave, but juicy burgers and savory chowder are buried treasures. 316 W 2nd St, Downtown, 90012. (213) 680-2600