9 Great Bars, Restaurants & Venues for Live Music in Albany
Note: The live music scene continues to evolve under the COVID-19 pandemic and social distancing guidelines. Where information was available we have added notes to the below establishments regarding their current live music situation, but it's best to call ahead and confirm.
Bars with an inviting, intimate space. Large venues that can accommodate major headliners. Country music, classic music, get-up-and-dance music. Albany has it all - see below for prime performance venues for live music!
The Hollow Bar + Kitchen
Photo taken prior to COVID-19 and social distancing guidelines. Photo provided.
The Hollow Bar + Kitchen is not only a top place in Albany for live music, it's also a four-star restaurant and a notable craft beer bar. The restaurant and bar is known for attracting talented musicians who are on their way up before exploding into mainstream music like Vintage Trouble, Kongos, and Consider the Source.
Guests at The Linda love the intimate performance space and state-of-the-art acoustics. "The sound was what really blew me away," says one Google reviewer. "Most music venues just seem to want to be loud. This place placed a huge emphasis on sound quality." They offer a wide variety of music shows as well as film and theater performances.
The Upper Room
Editor's Note 08/06/20 3:10pm: Pearl Street Pub is offering summer acoustic nights for 2020.
The Upper Room at Pearl Street Pub in the former Jillian's building regularly hosts live music events and comedy shows, and on Fridays and Saturdays the space opens up into a spacious dance floor. Rock/electric blues guitarist Popa Chubby has performed here, along with local legends Erin Harkes (pictured above) and Skeeter Creek.
Photo taken prior to COVID-19 and social distancing guidelines.
Editor's Note 08/06/20 3:10pm: Savoy Taproom is also offering live music on the patio for 2020.
Savoy Taproom is an upscale jazz bar with comfortable dining, an outdoor patio, and an extensive food menu. The formal dining room was once the Savoy Room at Justin's, bringing back the nostalgia of live music and late night bars on Lark Street. Head to the back for an up-close performance!
Times Union Center
Perhaps one of the largest and well-known live music venues in the Capital Region, the Times Union Center can accommodate between 6,000 to 17,500 people. The Rolling Stones, Elton John, Tina Turner, Eric Clapton, and many other big names have graced this stage.
Pauly's Hotel is known for being the oldest tavern in Albany, having been established in 1862! Pauly's Hotel has live music and entertainment every day, showcasing local talent as well as national acts. Every Monday is Blue Monday Blues Jam, when you can see the hottest local blues musicians.
Parish Public House
If enjoying Louisiana-style food while seeing great bands sounds appealing then the Parish Public House is probably the place for you! A parish in Louisiana is akin to a county in New York - this is where the name comes from. This establishment brings in a variety of rock, jazz, jam, hip-hop, bluegrass, country, and more.
The Fuze Box
Specializing in punk and indie rock shows, this retro-themed Albany bar is a live music hotspot and is also considered to be one of the most LGBTQ-friendly establishments in the area. If you want to dance along to the music this is the place for you!
Massry Center for the Arts
Located at the College of Saint Rose, the Massry Center is a medium-sized performance hall known for its cutting-edge acoustics and lineup of distinguished musicians and orchestras from across the planet.