From small, intimate settings to big, bustling venues, I've seen it all. With so many options, it can be hard to know where to start.

That's why I've rounded up the top eight music venues in Austin for you! Whether you're a local or just visiting, these spots are sure to have you tapping your feet and grooving along to some of the best live music around.

So sit back, relax, and let me show you the best of what Austin has to offer in terms of music venues!

Cactus Cafe

Cactus Cafe
🗺️ 2247 Guadalupe St, Austin, TX 78712
☎️ 512-475-6515
🌐 Website
Sunday: Closed
Monday: Closed
Tuesday: Closed
Wednesday: 1–8 PM
Thursday: 1–6:45 PM
Friday: 1–8 PM
Saturday: 1–8 PM

Upon entering the venue, I was immediately struck by its intimate atmosphere. The low lighting and cozy seating arrangements made me feel like I was at a friend's house party (but with better acoustics!). The stage was small but mighty, and the sound quality was impeccable.

As for the performers, they were top-notch! From folk singers to acoustic guitarists, every artist brought their A-game. It was clear that the Cactus Cafe takes pride in hosting only the best musicians.

One thing to note is that this venue is located on the University of Texas campus, so parking can be a bit of a challenge. But hey, if you're willing to walk a few extra blocks for good music (and let's be honest, who isn't?), then it shouldn't be a problem.

All in all, I had a blast at Cactus Cafe! Whether you're looking for a romantic date night or just want to catch some live music with friends, this place is definitely worth checking out.

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The North Door

The North Door
🗺️ 501 Brushy St, Austin, TX 78702
🌐 Website
Sunday: 12 PM–12 AM
Monday: Closed
Tuesday: Closed
Wednesday: 12 PM–12 AM
Thursday: 12 PM–12 AM
Friday: 12 PM–12 AM
Saturday: 12 PM–12:02 AM

The North Door is a hidden gem that offers an eclectic mix of music genres, from indie rock to jazz. The venue boasts a cozy atmosphere perfect for intimate performances, and the sound quality is top-notch. The staff were incredibly friendly and helpful, making sure I had a great time. Plus, their drink menu is impressive, featuring some classic cocktails with a modern twist. If you're looking for a unique and unforgettable musical experience in Austin, look no further than The North Door.

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Kenny Dorham's Backyard - Diverse Arts

Kenny Dorham's Backyard - Diverse Arts

This backyard is not just any ordinary backyard, it's a hidden gem that offers an intimate music experience. The acoustics here are top-notch and the outdoor setting makes for a refreshing change from stuffy indoor venues. The ambience is relaxed and inviting, which makes you feel like you're at a friend's BBQ party rather than a concert. The stage is small but mighty, showcasing some of the best local musicians in Austin. This spot is perfect for those who want to escape the crowds and enjoy some chill tunes under the stars.

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Stubb's Bar-B-Q

Stubb's Bar-B-Q
🗺️ 801 Red River St, Austin, TX 78701
☎️ 737-465-1218
🌐 Website
Sunday: 11 AM–9 PM
Monday: 11 AM–9 PM
Tuesday: 11 AM–9 PM
Wednesday: 11 AM–9 PM
Thursday: 11 AM–10 PM
Friday: 11 AM–10 PM
Saturday: 11 AM–10 PM

First of all, let me tell you that the atmosphere at Stubb's is electrifying. The stage has a great view from every angle and the sound quality is impeccable. Plus, their BBQ is so good it will make your taste buds do a happy dance.

I was pleasantly surprised by the variety of genres they host, from country to rock to indie, there's something for everyone. The only downside I found was that the lines at the bar can get pretty long when it's crowded, but hey, that just gives you more time to enjoy the music.

In conclusion, if you're looking for a memorable night filled with great music and delicious BBQ, Stubb's Bar-B-Q should definitely be on your list. Believe me when I say, it won't disappoint!

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Emo's Austin

Emo's Austin

The venue itself is spacious and the sound quality is impressive. The lighting effects create an immersive atmosphere that makes you feel like you're part of the show. However, if you're vertically challenged like me, getting a good view of the stage might be a bit of a challenge.

One downside is that the drinks are a bit pricey, so unless you're a millionaire or want to go into debt, I suggest pacing yourself.

Overall, Emo's Austin is definitely worth checking out for their diverse lineup of artists and top-notch production value. Just make sure to bring some extra cash for drinks or else you'll be crying emo tears all night long!

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The Continental Club

The Continental Club
🗺️ 1315 S Congress Ave, Austin, TX 78704
☎️ 512-441-2444
🌐 Website
Sunday: 2 PM–12:30 AM
Monday: 6 PM–2 AM
Tuesday: 4 PM–2 AM
Wednesday: 4 PM–2 AM
Thursday: 4 PM–2 AM
Friday: 4 PM–2 AM
Saturday: 2 PM–2 AM

Walking into the club, I was immediately struck by its vintage charm - it felt like I had stepped back in time to the 1950s. The dim lighting and red velvet curtains added to the overall ambiance.

As soon as the band started playing, I was enthralled by their musical prowess. The sound quality was top-notch, and every note resonated perfectly throughout the room.

The drinks were a bit pricey, but with such great music and atmosphere, it's worth it. Plus, they have some creative cocktails that are definitely worth a try.

Overall, The Continental Club is a great place to enjoy some live music while soaking up Austin's iconic culture. It may not have all the bells and whistles of some of the newer venues in town, but sometimes you just can't beat a classic - and this one definitely hits all the right notes!

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The Belmont

The Belmont
🗺️ 305 W 6th St, Austin, TX 78701
☎️ 512-476-2100
🌐 Website
Sunday: Open 24 hours
Monday: Open 24 hours
Tuesday: Open 24 hours
Wednesday: Open 24 hours
Thursday: Open 24 hours
Friday: Open 24 hours
Saturday: Open 24 hours

As soon as I walked in, I was struck by the elegance of the space. The high ceilings and chandeliers made me feel like royalty. The stage area was spacious and well-equipped with top-notch sound equipment.

The bartenders were quick to serve up some delicious drinks, and I even got a recommendation on what to try next time (there will definitely be a next time). And let's not forget about the food - it was truly delectable!

One thing that really stood out to me was how friendly and welcoming the staff was. They made sure everyone felt comfortable and had a great time.

Overall, if you're looking for a place to see live music in Austin, you can't go wrong with The Belmont. Just make sure to dress up a bit - you don't want to look out of place among all the fancy folks!

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Saxon Pub

Saxon Pub
🗺️ 1320 S Lamar Blvd, Austin, TX 78704
☎️ 512-448-2552
🌐 Website
Sunday: 4 PM–12 AM
Monday: 4 PM–12 AM
Tuesday: 4 PM–12 AM
Wednesday: 4 PM–12 AM
Thursday: 4 PM–12 AM
Friday: 4 PM–12 AM
Saturday: 4 PM–12 AM

First off, the ambiance was vibrant and inviting, but not overwhelming. The stage was set just right, allowing for an intimate performance that really connected with the audience. The sound quality was top-notch, providing a clear and crisp audio experience.

But let's talk about the menu. They serve up some delectable bites that pair perfectly with your drink of choice. I highly recommend the jalapeño poppers - they're a spicy treat that will have you reaching for more.

The staff was friendly and attentive, making sure everyone had what they needed to fully enjoy their night out. And as someone who's seen their fair share of venues, I can confidently say that Saxon Pub is one of the best places to catch live music in Austin.

So if you're looking for a place to unwind after a long day or just want to listen to some great live music, head on over to Saxon Pub. Trust me, you won't be disappointed!

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Susan Wright

Susan has a passion for helping small, locally-owned restaurants and businesses to tell their stories and showcase their unique offerings to the public. With a loyalty to her hometown of Austin, TX, Susan is committed to making sure these establishments get the recognition they deserve. Outside of work, Susan enjoys exploring Austin's food and music scene with friends, hiking in the nearby hill country, spending time in nature, and savoring every bite of barbeque she can find.