Atlanta, Georgia is one of the nation’s hotbeds for many different genres of music. Traditionally known as a capital for hip-hop music of different forms, including crunk, R&B, and more, it’s more recently taken on a reputation for blues, indie rock, and other contemporary genres. One thing’s for certain: the live music scene in Atlanta is thriving.
With that said, there’s always been a need for plenty of terrific venues in which all of these live music acts can perform. Fortunately, they have it in spades there, with a bevy of different theaters, music halls, and other venues that allow for artists both established and on the rise to put on a memorable show for their fans.
We’ve compiled a list below of some of the venues on which we’ve received the most positive feedback from music fans down in Atlanta. If you have any others to add, please let us know in the comments below!
The Fox Theatre
The Fox Theatre – otherwise known as the “Fabulous Fox Theatre,” as it’s marketed – is one of Atlanta’s most beautiful and iconic venues. Upon opening back in 1929, the local paper described it as “a picturesque and almost disturbing grandeur beyond imagination.” In those days, theatres were built to impress, and one of the biggest testaments to this venue’s beauty is that it’s still considered one of the most beautiful structures in the major market that is Atlanta.
Located in Midtown Atlanta, at the intersection of Peachtree Street and Ponce de Leon Avenue, it was originally built and designed as a luxurious movie theatre. It can hold as many as 4,665 patrons, and these days, it primarily plays host to a number of touring Broadway theatre shows, with a good number of other popular artists (musicians, comics, etc) that come through to perform, as well.
Some of the more notable events that are scheduled to take place at The Fox Theatre over the next year are The Nutcracker, Hello Dolly, and even Broadway’s biggest hit, Hamilton. These are just a few of the major events that will have a brief residency at the lavish venue, and it’s a bucket list venue for anybody to check out, so it rarely has difficulty in selling out a show, regardless of what’s going on that night.
Cadence Bank Amphitheater
Known by many different monikers over the years – originally called North Fulton Park Amphitheater, then Chastain Park Amphitheater, then Delta Classic Chastain Park Amphitheater, then State Bank Amphitheater, before changing to to Cadence Bank Amphitheater in 2019 – there’s one thing that has remained consistent over the years, and that’s that it’s Atlanta’s oldest outdoor music venue.
Located in Chastain Park in Buckhead and operating during the summer months, it affords music fans the opportunity to catch their favorite acts out in the open air. It has a capacity of nearly 6,900, with the majority of tickets being reserved seating, though there is a small lawn section with limited general admission seating at the back of the reserved seats and at stage right. Not many seats are covered to protect fans from the elements, so this is definitely a venue that offers fans a better time when the weather is right.
This venue has hosted a number of notable acts over the years, such as Johnny Cash, Frank Sinatra, Hootie & the Blowfish, and Janet Jackson, among countless others. The venue’s schedule usually gets announced for the upcoming summer during the winter months, so fans will know soon what acts they can expect to catch in person come summer 2020.
Terminal West is a unique music venue situated within a commercial, performing, and visual arts center is one of Atlanta’s most unique and well-known places to catch a concert since being opened in 2012.
Located in West Midtown Atlanta, the venue is 7,000 square feet and includes an outdoor roof deck, while drawing major crowds for a multitude of different genres of music, particularly electronic. Some of the major acts that have made it through Terminal West are The Killers, Imagine Dragons, and Big Boi, among others. This venue plays host to shows on a regular basis, so be sure to check it out if you’re in Atlanta and you ever get the chance.
Eddie’s Attic is the smallest venue on this list, but is an incredible venue for viewing live music. It opened in Decatur, GA back in 1991 and hosts live shows nearly every night. It has both a music room as well as a roof top patio bar that has hosted many up-and-coming musicians.
Eddie’s Attic is perhaps most known for its weekly open mic competition that provides a forum for songwriters from all different backgrounds and at various stages of their respective careers. This competition yields one winner each week, who earns a spot in their bi-annual Songwriter’s Open-Mic Shootout. Previous winners of this legendary competition include John Mayer and Jacob Jeffries Band.
One of the most recognizable buildings in all of Atlanta is The Tabernacle, a former church that was converted into a music venue back in 1996. It holds up to 2,600 people and has won a number of “Best of Atlanta” awards, as well as named one of the best concert venues in the country by Rolling Stone.
The venue has hosted some of the biggest names in music in recent years, including artists like Adele, Eminem, Guns N’ Roses, Kendrick Lamar, Prince, and others in its relatively short history. For our money, this is the best music venue in Atlanta because of its mix of aesthetic beauty, the building’s history, and the notable acts that can be drawn to playing there due to a mix of the aforementioned factors.
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