Live Music Venues
Kentucky’s live entertainment options accommodate every interest and every pocketbook. Catch a Kentucky theatre performance or listen to bluegrass music at a Kentucky bluegrass festival. Dance and other forms of entertainment are available throughout the state. In the larger urban areas you’ll find performances of world-class theatre and classical music, while in many smaller towns you can kick back and listen to bluegrass music or country tunes for free from local artists in a town square.
The Bardstown Opry
Located in Bardstown, Kentucky, The Bardstown Opry offers a music variety show every Friday night, with special shows throughout the year featuring national acts.
Live Music in Lexington
Local atmosphere, historic charm and good food make many of our live music establishments a great option for evening entertainment in Lexington. But you don't have to go to a bar to hear live music. Spring through early Autumnl, you'll find live music every Thursday evening in the small park beside the old Courthouse on Main Street. In the summer, listen to live jazz outdoors at Ecton Park. Moon Dance Amphitheatre and the Southland Jamboree are also great settings for live music during the warmer months. The Jazz Arts Foundation offers free monthly concerts at the Central Library.
If you are here on a Monday night, try to catch WoodSongs Old-Time Radio Hour. The show is taped weekly in Lexington at the Lyric Theater in front of a live audience and features some of the best folk and acoustic music in the country. It's broadcast on over 400 radio stations in 32 countries. Red Barn Radio tapes live Bluegrass Music for broadcast many Wednesday nights throughout most of the year.
Live Music in Louisville
Louisville has one of the biggest music scenes in the U.S. Bands from all over the country move to Louisville looking for a start, and locals are often lucky enough to watch some of the top bands in music in their own little hole-in-the-wall bars and clubs. If you're looking for a great place to listen to live music in Louisville, you'll definitely want to make these local bars and clubs among your first stops:
Phoenix Hill Tavern - Louisville's oldest nightclub, located at the corner of Baxter and Broadway in the Highlands. The two-story club houses five different bars, each offering a different type of music or entertainment.
The Highlands Taproom is a very small bar on Bardstown Road in the Highlands, just across the street from the Mid-City Mall. They showcase live bands that play solely original music every night of the week and never charge a cover. This bar is tiny though, and it's often extremely difficult to get to the bar to order a drink or to find a place to sit. However, in the summer when the deck is open, The Highlands Taproom is one of the best places to drink and listen to some of the best live music in Louisville.
Headliners Music Hall - an independently-owned local bar and music hall off of Lexington Road in the Highlands. The unique thing about Headliners is that they feature bands from nearly every genre, both local and national bands alike.
Live Music in Northern Kentucky
From arena shows to one-person acoustic sets and everything in between you will find it in Northern Kentucky region. There are many places that you can enjoy live music in Northern Kentucky.
Thompson House - located on Third Street in Newport, has four distinct stages suited for a variety of acts. The venue is historic, having once been the home to General John Thompson, the namesake of the building and inventor of the Tommygun.
Madison Theatre - former movie theatre located on Madison Avenue in Covington. The marquee outside still has the feel of a movie theatre from yesteryear, although the acts that play there run the gamut from old to the very new.
Southgate House Revival - atmospheric nightspot showcasing live bands, open-mike acts & more in a circa-1866 church.
Hofbräuhaus in Newport – Hofbräuhaus Newport is America’s first authentic Hofbräuhaus, modelled after the legendary 400+ year-old Hofbräuhaus in Munich, Germany. Fun and friendly is the atmosphere in the Bier Hall, with live music and about 250 soon to be close friends.