Following up from our Live Music Venue Round Up – Part 1 for Capital Cities, we’ve scoured Australia for some of the best live music venues for any artists considering a regional tour. Whether you’re an emerging artist touring for the first time, or a regular on the national touring scene and looking for somewhere new to play, your one stop shop for understanding some of the most popular venues in regional towns and cities around Australia is right here, once again hand-picked by locals and endorsed by real people.
We apologise if any of the following venues has either closed or stop operations since posting this article.
Wonderland Spiegeltent, Cairns – 250-400 capacity. The Wonderland Spiegeltent is a fantastic inner city venue that is home to world class performances including comedy, acrobatics, aerial, circus, music and dance as well as a unique venue to host your next event.
The Jack, Cairns – The Jack is the standard for a good time doubling up as Cairns No1 Live music, concert & event venue, showcasing world class touring artists monthly boasting an all-weather beer garden that is home to live music.
Bar36, Cairns – With a modern, urban, industrial-style setting, it is the perfect place to settle in for a big night or chill out for a lazy Sunday Session. BAR36 Live Lounge pffers national and local music talent 6 nights a week, transforming from an intimate affair to a live concert event with state-of-the-art sound and visuals.
Tanks Arts Centre, Cairns – Tanks Arts Centre is the leading contemporary music venue in the region, voted Cairns’ Best Entertainment Venue for seven years (and counting!) in the Cairns Post HIT Awards. Some notable acts that have played here are Sarah Blasko and Pete Murray.
Civic Centre, Mount Isa – The Mount Isa Civic Centre offers a range of products and services, with a diverse range of spaces available to suit each individuals particular needs.
Dalrymple, Townsville – 900 Capacity. They offer an array of facilities and entertainment areas for everyone to enjoy.
Great Western Hotel, Rockhampton – Steaks and live music in a charming pub built in 1862 with a terrace, plus a popular rodeo arena.
Magnums Hotel, Airlie Beach – Over the years Magnums Hotel has evolved into one of the top entertainment venues in Queensland with frequent guests from around Australia making the trip to the Whitsundays to experience what Magnums has to offer. With regular touring acts from around Australia and the world Magnums Hotel is the hub of the entertainment scene in Airlie Beach.
Harvey Road Tavern, Gladstone – The Harvey Road Tavern features an extensive public bar filled with a variety of refreshing beverages, a massive stage for live bands and entertainment with big name acts appearing regularly.
Central Hotel, Bundaberg – Pub in Bundaberg that features alot of DJ’s, strong party scene.
Elsewhere, Sunshine Coast – As a physical venue the evolution has continued, from the stunning pennylane outdoor area and a second, upper-mezzanine level bar to the continual rotation of artwork and constant eclectic additions. elsewhere continues to fill a niche in the creative social arena through not only music, events and guests, but also design and visual aesthetics.
Sol Bar, Sunshine Coast – 450 capacity, Solbar’s aim is to provide a sophisticated venue catering to all styles of artistic expression, Solbar blends cutting edge sound design, with a warm atmosphere to set the stage for performances second to none on the Coast. Some notable acts include Dead Letter Circus, Illy, Dustin Tebbutt and Lisa Mitchell.
Spotted Cow, Toowoomba – 400 capacity venue. From relaxing with a beer to enjoying great food or dancing the night away, The Spotted Cow’s warm and friendly atmosphere has something for everyone’s tastes.
Mills Precinct, Toowoomba – 700 capacity venue and one of the newest on the Toowoomba scene, the Mills Precinct offers 4 distinctively different precincts boasting a boutique hotel, music, arts and function venue for businesses, family and city events. This wonderful array of spaces is in the heart of the precinct.
Studio 188, Ipswich – Built in 1877 and originally a Baptist Church, the 170 capacity venue has hosted some notable acts including Gang of Youths, Ayla, Sahara Beck and Soviet X-Ray Record Club. The space can be easily transformed to include seating and tables to accommodate any style of show.
Racehorse Hotel, Ipswich – 400-500 capacity venue and featured acts including Pete Murray, Birds Of Tokyo, The Living End, The Getaway Plan, Northlane, Grinspoon, and DJ Tigerlily to name a few.
Miami Marketta, Gold Coast – Capacity of 450, It’s designated cultural precinct offers two nights a week of large audiences for local bands. Through their street food/creative markets concept they regularly draw audiences in the thousands for local bands on a Friday and Saturday night. Also apart of Miami Marketta is Studio 56, with all new sound equipment and stage purpose-built for live music.
NightQuarter, Gold Coast – NightQuarter Markets and live entertainment hotspot, is described as a festival every weekend. Imagine a shipping container community boasting the very best in micro-restaurents, street food and local live music.
New South Wales
Hoey Moey Hotel, Coffs Harbour – The Hoey Moey has a long-standing reputation for being an excellent live entertainment venue. It has always been a favourite with locals and visitors alike. From national touring bands and headline acts, to a treasure trove of local musical talent. They pride themselves on offering regular FREE weekly live music: Thursday Night Live, Friday Night Festival of Music, Saturday Girls Night Out (with Party DJs) and The Best Sunday Sesh on the Coast!
Glasshouse, Port Macquarie – The Glasshouse offers a world of cultural experience, state-of-the-art technical facilities and flexible venues for performance, leisure and hire. Depending on what type of performance you would like to give there are two possible spaces, Theatre seating capacity 588 or Studio seating capacity 100.
Panthers, Port Macquarie – Port Macquarie Panthers overlooks the beautiful Hastings River and offers fabulous facilities. Venue hosting basement sessions and live entertainment each week.
The Beery, Terrigal – Party central in Terrigal featuring loads of DJ’s and live bands to get your blood pumping. Some notable acts that have played here are Vera Blue, Slumberjack and The Jungle Giants.
Anita’s Theatre, Thirroul – After undoing major renovations in 2007, the venue was renamed and opened as Anita’s Theatre. Since that date the theatre has played host to a number of concerts and live performances. Some notable acts that have played here are D.D Dumbo, Holy Holy, Thelma Plum and Missy Higgins.
Beach Hotel, Byron Bay – With the honest heart and soul of a pub, The Beach Hotel with its chilled out vibes has so much to offer. They feature a wide range of local musicians almost every night of the week. Perfect for an acoustic artist.
The Northern, Byron Bay – 550 capacity. Hearty pub grub and locally brewed beer in a charming, 2-storey tavern with regular live rock bands. Some notable acts that have played here are Sticky Fingers, Dan Sultan and Bliss n Eso.
Lismore City Hall, Lismore – Venue offering a range of spaces for hire depending on the style/size of the show. There’s the Studio for more intimate concerts with a stage and dancefloor. Or, there’s the Theatre with seated capacity of 507, or 750 standing, perfect for your larger scale performance.
The Globe Bar, Newcastle – Unique bar and music venue that plays host to a wide range of genres from Jazz to Country to Rock. Cooperative ownership ensures that The Globe will continue to be a place where people can enjoy live music in a relaxed environment and where musicians can share and develop their skills.
Bar On The Hill, Newcastle – Bar on the Hill is one of Newcastle’s best live music venues, hosting acts like Boy & Bear, Hilltop Hoods and Ball Park Music to name a few. By day, the Bar on the Hill Cafe serves up delicious and cheap options for breakfast and lunch, and into the afternoon the bar opens and the fun begins.
The Small Ballroom, Newcastle – Capactity 330 standing. The venue hosts the best production for its size in the area with a Nexo ground stacked system and also offers free accommodation to touring artists (national and international). Some notable acts that have played here are Dune Rats, Safia, and The Smith Street Band. 18+ and all ages events available.
The Cambridge, Newcastle – One of the most popular live entertainment venues for original bands in Australia, the Cambridge Hotel has hosted everyone from Silverchair, The Presets & The Black Keys, to the Misfits and The Buzzcocks. With a focus on bringing the best local, national and international acts through Newcastle, The Cambridge Hotel is able to host events for local, touring and major international artists.
Entrance Leagues Club, Bateau Bay – 700 standing capacity. The room hosts significantly more touring artists than any other venue in the area and is often the strongest regional performer for many tours. Some notable acts that have played here are Alison Wonderland, Grinspoon, Twelve Foot Ninja, and Wolfmother.
Proud Marys, Gosford – One of the finest alternative music houses. Deep in the speakeasy, Mary is famous for her good food, good Music and good times. She boasts a wide range of local, national and international artists, entertaining patrons from late afternoon into the early hours of the morning.
UOW Uni Bar, Illawarra – Key player in the live music venue market in the Illawarra. UniBar provides student’s with a casual, relaxed atmosphere, affordable meals, drinks and regular happy hour.
Towradgi Beach Hotel & Waves, Wollongong – Boasts a massive bear garden with pub style meals and a killer stage for touring national and international acts. Family friendly and great for sunday sesh style acts.
Rad Bar, Wollongong – They refer to themselves as a bar/cafe/music venue/art space, laid back chilled atmosphere supporting local touring musicians, perfect for up and comers.
Commercial Hotel, Milton – Public bar and bistro food, soak up the amazing view from the beer garden on the back deck scowering from across the lush Shoalhaven landscape to the Pacific Ocean. Featuring live local bands each week, great for emerging acoustic to indie rock bands.
The Home Tavern, Wagga Wagga – Premier venue in Wagga Wagga that offers two band areas, upstairs for a more intimate setting with a 200 standing capacity or a more open area downstairs with a 600 standing capacity. They have conveniently listed all of their tech specs on their website for bands to see.
Kinross Hotel, Albury – Some of Albury/Wodonga’s biggest events have been held at the Kinross Woolshed and the in-demand Exhibition Grounds have become a major drawcard for event organisers. Hosting an aray of live band nights, perfect for country singers/groups.
The Workers Club, Geelong – BBQ style meals and quality live music venue, some notable acts that have played here are Polish Club, Bob Evans and All Our Exes Live In Texas.
Sleepy Hollows Blues Club, Geelong – The home of blues in Geelong, the club provides an afternoon of top-class blues jamming for all musicians and an evening of first class blues entertainment. SHBC provides aspiring local musicians of all age the ability to compete for and gain monetary support to further their careers.
Black Hatt, Geelong – Live music on the weekends showcasing the best of local, national and international acts, What is new is a beer garden to rival the best Geelong has to offer.
Saints & Sailors, Geelong – Every Friday, Saturday and Sunday night, they cater for all styles and genres.
The Wool Exchange, Geelong – The Wool Exchange Entertainment Complex prides itself on being the leading live band venue in Geelong. Their venue is ideal for a wide range of acts, from modern-day indie bands with niche followings to Australia’s long and established iconic groups. Some notable acts that have played here are Dune Rats, Holy Holy and Grinspoon.
Karova Lounge, Ballarat – Karova Lounge really needs no introduction since they have been long supports of touring artists since the early 00’s, and they have very conveniently included their tech specs on their website, Some notable acts that have played here are Architecture in Helsinki, Angus & Julia Stone, Birds of Tokyo, The Rubens, Something For Kate, and King Gizzard & The Lizard Wizard, the list goes on!
Karova’s Carpark Festival, Ballarat – Hosted by Karova Lounge, the Karova’s Carpark Festival brings a wide range of artists to one place to celebrate life and music.
Babushka Lounge, Ballarat – Founded as a venue for musicians, artists and like minds to socialise and enjoy an atmosphere of music, wine, art and conversation, this little wine bar/restaurant situated in Ballarat has a charming beer garden and a casual lounge for relaxing and listening to live acoustic music through Babushka’s exceptional sound system. Oh and FREE WIFI!
Suttons House of Music, Ballarat – A venue full of rich history, and supporting a wide range of musical genres from country to large instrumental ensembles this is a great family friendly venue with a cafe style vibe.
The Eastern, Ballarat – Bar and beer garden hosting regular national touring artists, perfect for emerging bands.
The Basement Bar, Bendigo – The Basement Bar is located underground in a disused bank vault and former speakeasy directly across from Bendigo’s iconic fountain. They have live music on Saturday as well as a fortnightly Sunday session open mic, open late.
Ulumbarra Theatre, Bendigo – The Ulumbarra Theatre is the latest addition to the suite of premium events and performing arts venues managed by Capital Venues and Events. From the majestic Capital Theatre, Bendigo Bank Theatre, Banquet Room, Dudley House and Engine Room in the View Street Arts Precinct, to the opulent Bendigo Town Hall and soon to be completed Ulumbarra Theatre, Capital Venues and Events provide functions, events and conventions solutions across the entire range of venues. Each venue has its own distinctive style, with capacities ranging from 20 up to 950 attendees, yet all venues are equipped with state-of-the-art production equipment, premium catering capability and professional technical and event support from Capital Venues and Events staff.
Baha, Rye – Since opening its doors in ’06, BAHA has become synonymous for killa Mex food and killa live, original music, hosting heaps of Australia’s finest home grown talent. Live music 3-4 times a week.
Uno Club, Geelong – The venue is a reclaimed band space ~ turned nightclub. With the ability to hold over 700 people at one time, they boast three rooms of dance floor delight, with Geelong’s favourite rooftop beer garden. A place where the music matters, you can find everything from house, electronica, disco, techno, hip-hop & all things in-between.
Sooki Lounge, Belgrave – 18+ events only. Featuring mid week karaoke, DJ’s on Fridays and Saturday nights and sweet sounds for your sunday sesh.
Lighthouse Theatre, Warrnambool – A large scale venue boasting multiple rooms to cater for the size and style of your show, including a 583 seat theatre, multi-functional Lighthouse Studio, glass facade foyer and an intimate meeting space. The Lighthouse Studio is suitable for intimate comedy, musicals, bands, and cabaret.
Whalers, Warrnambool – A newly renovated popular pub with a rooftop courtyard, a sports bar and a bistro menu, plus DJs and live bands every week.
Eastbank Centre, Shepparton – The Eastbank Concert Hall seats 827 patrons in fully raked theatre style seating. Another space is the WestSide Performing Arts Centre (Mooroopna), which seats up to 416 in fixed, fully raked, theatre style seating with extensive theatrical equipment, including an orchestra pit and fly tower.
Kay St, Gippsland – Kay Street is well known for housing the best national and international touring acts: most recently ILLY, Karnivool, The Delta Riggs, The Wolfe Brothers, Birds Of Tokyo, Hilltop Hoods, Flo Rida, Xavier Rudd, Pete Murray, The Living End, Jebediah, Killing Heidi + more! We’re the local love of almost all Aussie Djs big + small with names like Will Sparks, Joel Fletcher, Teddy Cream, Some Blonde, Press Play, SCNDL, Timmy Trumpet, Uberjackd, Reece Low + so many more on the bill of regular headliners.
The Pier, Frankston – Famous for its revolving dancefloor, and status as host to some of the biggest bands of the 70’s and 80’s, the once iconic 21st Century Nightclub in Frankston is being relaunched as the Pier Bandroom.
The Promethean, Adelaide – Hidden yet wonderful live music venue and event space with a tiny capacity perfect for more intimate shows. It is also an old converted church with a carpeted upstairs balcony that can fit 20 people and a half carpet, half wooden dance floor downstairs in front of the stage.
Rhino Room, Adelaide – For nearly two decades the Rhino Room has been heart and soul of Adelaide’s creative spirit where you can see live comedy, theatre, DJ’s, visual artists, children’s performers and bands performing.
Nautilus Theatre, Port Lincoln – The auditorium is also available as a flat floor space for balls, cabaret, fashion shows, performances, and conferences. A range of diverse and exciting theatre is presented each season in the Nautilus Arts Centre Theatre including productions from Country Arts SA’s Performing Arts Touring Programme.
Shadows Entertainment Complex, Mt Gambier – The Only Nightclub in Mount Gambier.. With live Entertainment and the Night-Club Experience. With International Artists, DJ’s & Live Bands appearing regularly, Shadows Entertainment Complex has been established and running strong for over 21 years.
Settlers Tavern, Bunbury – Settlers Tavern, affectionately known by locals as ‘The Tav’ is the place people go for a quintessential dose of friendly West Australian hospitality. The atmosphere embodies the true spirit of Margaret River. Their live events are a mix of local showcases and touring acts with a few karaoke/open mic nights thrown in.
Prince Of Wales Hotel, Bunbury – Built in 1882, the Prince of Wales Hotel , has been extended and recently renovated preserving it’s charm and authenticity. Whist maintaining it’s heritage environment all the modern necessities are provided. Some notable acts that have played here are San Cisco, Rag n’ Bone and The Murlocs.
Fremantle Arts Centre, Fremantle – FAC offers three unique spaces for concert hire, year round – the South Lawn (3,400 capacity), Front Garden (1,100 capacity) and Inner Courtyard (400 capacity). We can cater for high-profile international acts, national and local performers. Previous acts include Nick Cave, CW Stoneking, Lauryn Hill, Chet Faker, Passenger, James Bay, Hot Chip, Paul Kelly, The Waifs, Archie Roach and Flying Lotus. All concerts have a 10pm curfew.
Dunsborough Hotel, Dunsborough – Keeping it simple with great wines, amazing local brewed beers, the freshest produce and an eclectic mix of live entertainment.
Clancy’s Fish Pub, Dunsborough – Nestled amongst the bushland of the glorious South West, overlooking a tranquil lake and soaring gum trees, lies Clancy’s Fish Pub Dunsborough.Delicious seafood is scoffed and local beer and wine guzzled by locals and holiday-makers, while the sound of live music drifts through the serene surrounds.
Player’s Bar, Mandurah – Bar with a passion for the get doooown, guaranteed good times with live event Fridays, live bands, tours, groove Saturdays, retro throwbacks 90’s & 2000’s.
White Star, Albany – Hosting music on weekends with chilled out Sunday sessions over delicious fancy pub style meals and house made desserts. They also host touring acts.
Hotel Tasmania, Launceston – From dance music to international rock acts (and everything in between), the Hotel Tasmania has been the go-to place in Launceston for live music. The hotel was re-launched as a live music venue in February 2015 which saw Australia’s number 1 time travelling DJ – Hot Dub Time Machine – get the place jumping with his unique blend of dancefloor anthems from 50s jazz to the latest EDM from Skrillex.
Princess Theatre, Launceston – The Earl Arts Centre is an intimate, black box theatre, which was built through the combined efforts of the Launceston community, Local, State and Commonwealth Governments. There are 184 seats in the Earl Arts Centre, which is suitable for a range of smaller productions.
Wrest Point Showroom, Hobart – Their calendar covers reknown comedians and rock legends at Wrest Point Tasmania; free live music one night followed by an international act the next. Some notable acts that have played here are Keith Urban, John Butler, Dylan Moran, the Presets and delivered intimate performances where dancing, drinks and memories flow. They’re also proud to be the ‘second home’ to the Tasmanian Symphony Orchestra (TSO).
Odeon Theatre, Hobart – Definitely a front runner for regional Tasmanian venues with a heritage style vibe. A tiered venue which means no matter where patrons stand they’ll see every amazing moment of the show. Some notable acts that have played here are Passenger, The Living End and Sticky Fingers.
View Part 1 for Capital Cities HERE
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