Sounds of the Cities

Whether they’re well known natives (Bob Dylan, Prince), ones you might not have know were from here (Soul Asylum, Hüsker Dü), or those more current to the scene (Atmosphere, Doomtree), there’s one thing they all have in common: Minnesota roots.

Bunker’s Music Bar & Grill

Any day of the week you can catch a live local band playing rock, funk, R&B or blues. The legendary Dr. Mambo’s Combo plays Sundays and Mondays.

Dakota Jazz Club

Enjoy some of the world’s best in dining and music in this gorgeous downtown space. Tickets and showtimes vary, but the music, food, drinks and atmosphere always delivers.

Famous Dave’s BBQ & Blues Club

At this Uptown location of the local BBQ chain, enjoy live music nightly. Local, regional and national blues, with a dose of retro-funk and disco. No charge, except special events.

Dividing Eden at Fine Line Cafe

Fine Line Music Cafe

Local and national rock, folk and blues acts play at this pleasing downtown bar that everyone visits for one show or another. House bands come and go, playing ‘70s boogie to ska.

First Avenue & 7th Street Entry

A local music landmark, this cavernous former bus station was showcased by Prince in Purple Rain and has hosted big names in music for decades.

Hexagon Bar

Since 1934, the Hexagon Bar has hosted the best bands the Twin Cities has to offer without charging a cover. While the setting is simple and dive-ish, the music is what matters most.

Kitty Cat Klub

The Kitty Cat Klub blends casual opulence with Minneapolis’ diverse music scene. Seven cozy rooms, comfy furniture and fab drink specials make it a memorable spot both day and night.

Mill City Nights

This Minneapolis rock club is owned by concert promoter AEG Live and features a lower-level bar called The Nether Bar.

A man and a woman in tattered clothing are lying on the ground and facing each other in an embrace.

Minnesota Opera

The Minnesota Opera, which appears at the Ordway Center for the Performing Arts, recently celebrated its 50th anniversary and consistently produces a season of five shows annually that include great works from the classical canon as well as innovative new works.

Minnesota Orchestra

Over the course of the last century-plus the Minnesota Orchestra has consistently established itself as among the strongest in the country.

Nomad World Pub

Hip and eclectic spot hosting live jazz, rock and world music, as well as televised soccer matches and Trivia Mafia Mondays.

Shout House Dueling Pianos

This rock ‘n roll, sing-a-long, dueling piano bar features two piano players/singers, performing at face-to-face grand pianos.

The Cabooze

Shaped like a large railroad caboose, the Cabooze isn’t your typical concert venue. The talent ranges from blues, rock and country to soul, hip-hop and reggae. The crowd is just as diverse, with bikers letting loose alongside campus coeds.

The Cedar Cultural Center

For more than 20 years, the Cedar has welcomed prominent national artists like Bill Frisell, Gillian Welch and John Gorka. Along with traditional American concerts, the center also hosts ethnic music and dance performances.

The Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra

Now in its 56th season, The Saint Paul Chamber Orchestra is the nation’s only full-time professional chamber orchestra and widely regarded as one of the world’s finest.

Turf Club

This retro-era roadhouse offers live music from punk to bluegrass six nights a week, along with modern jazz in a former speakeasy downstairs. Proximity to several colleges adds a youthful vibe.

Varsity Theater

Located in Minneapolis’ Dinkytown neighborhood, the Varsity hosts everything from weddings and classical recitals to Shakespearian drama and folk festivals.


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