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Explore San Diego Music

San Diego's Live Music Scene Sizzles

When it comes to live music, San Diego boasts an embarrassment of riches from stadium-filling touring acts to local bands in neighborhood bars.

Photo By Chris Rov Costa

When it comes to live music, San Diego rocks it as a prime tour stop and home to impressive local talent. From the central city, up to North County and to the east, dozens of venues in all shapes and sizes host everything from acoustic folk and intimate shows to A-list rock-n-roll and big-production, elaborately choreographed pop. Not to mention, the city welcomes music festivals galore.

The underground, independent music scene in San Diego also thrives, with clubs throughout the city hosting nightly shows. For more than 25 years, The Casbah in Midtown has been a prime spot to see up-and-coming acts. And just a little to the east in City Heights, the neighboring Soda Bar and The Hideout have a similarly impressive calendar of shows.

In Downtown and North Park, respectively, the historic Copley Symphony Hall, home to the San Diego Symphony, and Observatory provide a picturesque backdrop for crowd-pleasing headliners. Just a short drive up Interstate 5 will take you to the Belly Up Tavern in Solana Beach, which offers the best chance to see big names in a small intimate setting. And next to the bay, Humphreys Concerts by the Bay pairs live music with a gorgeous waterfront view, not to mention dinner and hotel packages.

Even on college campuses, it's easy to find a great place to see a show. The Open Air Theatre can be found in the center of San Diego State University's campus, and hosts big-name touring bands throughout the year. Or for a more intimate experience, grab a cup of coffee and get comfortable at the Loft at UCSD.

From stadium-filling touring acts to local bands in neighborhood bars, there's something for every music fan in San Diego.

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