When it comes to live music, you can’t go wrong with visiting your local bars, dives, and lounges. No obnoxious party girls or sucking up to the door men here—anyone gets VIP entry to these spots without a problem. It is at these local little nooks where real talent gets discovered and future stars are born. Most of the performers are up-and-coming artists just hoping someone in the crowd will hear them pouring their souls out on stage.
Most importantly, these little hotspots are the perfect places to carry your Vapor Couture electronic cigarette. Whether these venues allow smoking or not, you can proudly show off your Vapor Couture electronic cigarette without being hassled by those burly bouncers. Here are the ten best places to catch the next best thing in music.
The Crocodile Café, Seattle, Was.
Home to the hipster movement, it’s no surprise that the state of Washington ranks first as the city with the most laid-back hangouts in the nation. It’s also no surprise that the best spot in Seattle is where the biggest names in indie rock first got their start. Former attorney, Stephanie Dorgan, bought “The Croc” in 1991 and turned it into the iconic stage for artists like Death Cab For Cutie, Modest Mouse and The Postal Service.
2200 2nd Ave., TheCrocodile.com
Bardot, Miami, FL
Bardot is a newcomer to the South Florida music scene, but that doesn’t make it any less cool. Though surrounded by other more high-profile nightclubs, this little bar still showcases a great lineup of artists from all over the nation. In December 2011, platinum-selling artist and Grammy nominee, Moby, could’ve just as easily held a sold-out show at any of the massive amphitheaters in the South Florida region. He instead chose to hold his private acoustic set at this little club that could. Not too Shabby, Bardot, not shabby at all.
3456 North Miami Ave., Bardotmiami.com/
The Delancy, Brooklyn, NY
Who would think this basement lounge, with its crystal chandeliers and velvet –covered chairs, would also be a performance hub for…punk rockers?! The Delancy may look very posh on the inside, but appearances can fool; this beautiful bar has a booming sound system equipped for live bands. The outside patio is homey and inviting with exotic greenery encasing ivory chairs, perfect for sitting and musing with a tattooed-up date.
168 Delancy Street, thedelancey.com/
Emo’s, Austin, TX.
Yes, I’m sure some band is playing Emo rock here at Emo’s, but that’s not why this music hall got its name. Back in 1991, a guy name Emo bought the place from another guy, who then bought it from another guy. This bar in the heart of Texas has certainly had its share of owners by the time the real Emo got to it. (It was once a nickelodeon) One thing is for sure: you never know who you will see on Emo’s stage. Back in 1994, the infamous Johnny Cash graced this small stage and played one of the most memorable sets this town has ever seen.
2015 E. Riverside, emosaustin.com
First Avenue, Minneapolis, MN
Where did the Artist Formerly Known as Prince get his start? You may have thought that this eccentric, gender-bending soul legend might have hailed from outer space, but the only space he was able to occupy back when he was an unknown was First Avenue of Minneapolis. The owners still brag to this day about when the Prince of purple blew crowds away at this Downtown Danceteria.
701 First Avenue, first–avenue.com
The 9:30 Club, Washington, D.C.
Where in the Northeast can you go see the Scorpions one day, Beth Orton the next and Frank Ocean all in the same location? At the one, the only 9:30 Club nestled in the heart of our nation’s capital: Washington, D.C. Sit up close and personal with your favorite artist and munch on some of their delectable cupcakes. Or, share your e-cig with a cute boy waiting next to you in line for tickets. Be for warned: The 9:30 Club isn’t exactly located in between those cherry-lined streets of the National Mall (the neighborhood is rumored to be a bit rough).
815 V St. NW, 930.com
Eddie’s Attic, Decatur, GA
Ask anyone around here what they think of Decatur, GA and you’ll hear, “where it’s greater.” John Mayer, Shawn Mullins and pretty much any performer that made it big during the height of the 90’s singer-songwriter boom, has played at Eddie Owen’s little dive bar. Though, it has made some changes since the 1990’s (the Music Room is now closed), Eddie’s Attic is still the #1 spot for up-and-coming artists and an ice cool beer.
515 N Mcdonough St, www.eddiesattic.com
The Bluebird Café, Nashville, TN
Playing the notorious Bluebird Café is practically synonymous with penning your signature on a country-recording contract. The Bluebird Café of Nashville, Tennessee has such a reputation for hosting the greatest names in country. Expect acoustic sets of unreleased materials from big names like LeAnne Rimes and Mary Chapin Carpenter. Even Jo Dee Messina partnered with famous R&B aficionado-turned-Reality-Housewife Kandi Burress on this very stage to show off their cross-cultural duet to a live audience on a recent episode of Real Housewives of Atlanta.
4104 Hillsboro Pike, BlueBirdCafe.com
Schubas, Chicago, IL
There are a lot of great things coming out of the Windy City: hot dogs, mob movies and Dave Matthews. Everyone has got to get their start somewhere, and there’s no better place to start than Schubas. It was at this very tavern that police cornered famous robber, John Dillinger and tried to close him off inside before he could make his escape. He was later shot and killed around the corner at the Biograph Theater. The owners, Mike and Chris Schuba, no longer host robbers with a flight risk in their tavern. You only come here if you want to see artists like Dave Matthews Band, Feist and My Morning Jacket.
3159 North Southport Avenue, Schubas.com
Cain’s Ballroom, Tulsa, OK
This might seem a bit cliché: there’s no place quite like Cain’s Ballroom in Tulsa. Then again, not too many music halls can boast having a giant hole in the wall caused by the Sex Pistol’s lead singer, Sid Vicious. Go here to see everything from Elvis Costello to Metallica to The Strokes. The National Register of Historic Places dubbed this former dance studio an official landmark, so when you visit you’re literally standing in the place where music history is made.
423 North Main St., Tulsa, Okla.; Cainsballroom.com