The live music scene is thriving in our bustling city, from smooth jazz to hip-hop, grunge and indie rock—here are the best live music bars for your gig-going pleasure.
Goodgod Small Club | CBD
Thom Yorke played an intimate set here during Radiohead's 2012 tour of Australia. Need we say more? It's small, low-key and kind of grungy in an oh-so appealing way, but this is no small club. Some of Sydney's best talent has played in the Danceteria downstairs, entertaining and delighting anyone who is in the mood to groove.
The Basement | CBD
The oldest licensed music venue in Sydney, this Circular Quay stalwart delivers live music six to seven nights a week. From jazz to electronica, hip-hop and folk, this iconic venue guarantees a good night out. Food and drink are available via their bistro and live music bar.
The Passage | Darlinghurst
The Passage has steadily been making its mark on Sydney's live music scene, with weekly performances in rhythm and blues, Motown, funk and Northern soul. With delicious food, and an extensive wine and cocktail list, The Passage is hitting all the right notes amongst live-music-loving Sydneysiders.
Oxford Art Factory | Darlinghurst
Oxford Art Factory combines art and music in this multi-dimensional venue, which is modelled on Warhol's Factory in 60's New York. An institution of Sydney's live music scene, Oxford Art Factory sets itself apart with a unique musical line-up, confronting art exhibitions and good-vibe disco nights.
Beach Road Hotel | Bondi
Bondi locals flock upstairs to Beach Road Hotel's musical chamber, which has seen the likes of Cloud Control, Tigertown and Jagwar Ma hit the stage. There's plenty of cider and great food going round, so take a breather at the beer garden downstairs.
The Vanguard | Newtown
It's plush, it's intimate and it's Newtown's "red carpet" venue for live music. The 1920s-themed interior creates the ambiance of a relaxed yet luxurious night out, whilst listening to some of Sydney's most talented musicians.
505 | Surry Hills
Live music six nights a week, 505 on Cleveland Street in Surry Hills is a one of the best spots for music in the city. On the bill you'll find everything from old-school funk, to Latin jazz, and raw, untapped talent. Doors open 7pm Mondays and 6pm Tuesday-Saturday.
Image credit: Will Haslingden, Sons Of The East