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Overview

Live music

Melbourne crowds and venues have a long and celebrated tradition of nurturing live music, making Melbourne the nation's music capital.

The city's vibrant independent music scene comes alive every night of the week in pubs, clubs, warehouses and basements. From skinny-jeaned indie kids thrashing it out in a sweaty club to moustached gentleman pecking away on an old country number, the city caters for all tastes with only one prerequisite - a heartfelt love of music. Choose a style and check out some of the best local musicians performing across the city.

Find details in Melbourne's free street papers Beat and Inpress and weekly lift-outs in The Age and Herald Sun.

City

If you don't mind a late night and you want to be in the thick of the action, the city is the place to be. Thursday through to Sunday is the best time to catch up-and-coming bands in sweaty clubs like Ding Dong Lounge or Cherry.

Northside

Visit Fitzroy and Collingwood – the spiritual home of the north's music scene. Wander Brunswick and Johnston streets on a weeknight and stumble across latin and jazz, along with rock, indie and hardcore. Join the revellers on the weekend at Melbourne's home of rock and roll, The Tote, or catch acts at The Old Bar, Yah Yah's and the Workers Club.

If you're staying out Brunswick way, head down to the The Spotted Mallard, the Retreat or the Cornish Arms on Sydney Road for gigs most nights, or head to the bandroom around the corner at Howler. In Northcote, head to High Street to catch a quiet set in the comfy bandroom of the Wesley Ann or walk over to the Northcote Social Club – one of the city's best concert clubs.

Southside

Head south to catch hairy-chested rock bands, solo acts, comedy and DJs at the Esplanade Hotel, St Kilda (closed for renovation until December 2015), or to hear the sounds of the eighties for a second time with young  bands and crowds at Revolver, Chapel Street.

Highlights

Live music venues

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Live music venues

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Live music

Thornbury Theatre

This High Street venue boasts all the glamour of Melbourne in the twenties. See rock, folk and soul acts strut their stuff in the grand ballroom.

Live music

The Old Bar

Stop in for a beer and find everything from snotty punk and country twang to indie pop and acoustic jangles at this much-loved piece of old-Fitzroy.

Live music

Cherry Bar

This old soul of the Melbourne scene was founded by the drummer of the Cosmic Psychos in 2000 and was a launch-pad for local heroes Jet and Airbourne.

Bars

Boney

Catch local heroes in the upstairs bandroom, making the most of the filling meals and tasty snacks to power you through the infamous 2am live slot.

Live music

The Toff in Town bandroom

For those looking for a break from the noise and sweat of the usual rock club, The Toff, upstairs in Curtin House, is a glossy change of pace.

Live music

Paris Cat

Boasting everything from trad, fusion and latin jazz right through to big band and gypsy swing, there's plenty for aficionados and novices alike.

Performing arts

National Theatre

Catch local and international music, dance and theatre performances or enrol at Australia's oldest performing arts schools at this historic theatre.

Live music

The Prince Bandroom

Walk past the famous chalk board sign out front and head upstairs to catch the hottest indie, rock, hip hop and soul acts when they come to town.

Live music

Northcote Social Club bandroom

The Northcote Social Club will always be remembered as the bandroom The Pixies chose to play before hitting the big stages on their first Aussie tour.

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Collingwood

Peel back the inner-city onion that is Collingwood and discover layers of local history, infamous characters, quirky creativity and effortless charm.

Food & wine

Late night bars

Tuck into a tipple while everyone else is tucked in bed. These Melbourne bars will keep the light on for you well after the last tram has gone home.

Destinations

Fitzroy

Perch in a Brunswick Street bar and celebrate the way that sometimes the more things change, the more they stay the same in this bohemian enclave.