Courtesy Jason Tang/Seattle Theatre Group

Where the Music Happens

The Head and the Heart at The Moore Theatre Courtesy Jason Tang/Seattle Theatre Group

With timeless concert halls and avant-garde venues, Seattle has great sound in its genes. Start big at Climate Pledge Arena (305 Harrison St; and WaMu Theater (800 Occidental Ave S;, destinations for grand concert tours from major stars. Other A-listers perform on the historic stage of The Paramount Theatre (*911 Pine St;, which has showcased indie standouts like The Decemberists and pop starlets like Camila Cabello. It’s one of three venues run by Seattle Theatre Group, which also operates The Moore Theatre (*1932 Second Ave) and Neptune Theatre (1303 NE 45th St), each known for a spectrum of styles, from international rock to funky experimental acts. For headliners of the classic music variety, Benaroya Hall (*200 University St;, home of the world-renowned Seattle Symphony, delivers with amazing acoustics and equally impressive talent like Yo-Yo Ma.

More intimate venues for touring acts range from Showbox (*1426 First Ave;, which has hosted up-and-coming rock and alt-pop bands since 1939, and its sister site Showbox SoDo (*1700 First Ave S) to The Crocodile (2200 Second Ave;, a Belltown institution known for its notable acts in hip-hop, punk, and more. Bands like Nirvana, Pearl Jam, and Mudhoney have graced its stage.

In the Columbia City neighborhood, small but bustling Royal Room (5000 Rainier Ave S; features a wide range of food and music styles. Downtown’s The Triple Door (*216 Union St; hosts burlesque to funk alongside a pan-Asian menu of everything from Wagyu tartare to miso ice cream, while cocktails, rock, and lounge-y wood paneling come together at Ballard’s Sunset Tavern (5433 Ballard Ave NW; Nearby in Ballard, the venerable Tractor Tavern (5213 Ballard Ave NW; will celebrate 30 years of being one of Seattle’s favorite independent venues in 2024.

If it’s a specific genre you seek, Seattle has a concert hall for that too. El Corazón (109 Eastlake Ave E; invites heavy-hitting metal beats; Fremont Abbey Arts Center (4272 Fremont Ave N; offers soulful acoustics; and Dimitriou’s Jazz Alley (2033 Sixth Ave; presents world-class melodies within a refined atmosphere.

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