The only thing better than an awesome New York City bar is an awesome New York City bar that features incredible live music. High-quality drinks are obviously a must, but there’s something uniquely spectacular about relaxing with a perfect beverage while top-notch music creates a desirable atmosphere.
As many NYC music lovers have found out the hard way, though, delusions of grandeur encountered while sniffing out a music-playing bar often result in ear-piercing (or barely audible) notes, beats, and sounds being suffered through the entire night–or at least until the exit is reached as crowds of like-minded sufferers simultaneously try to book it.
To save music lovers time, money, and nights of fun, let’s take a look at five incredible NYC bars that understand the importance of both drinks and live music!
5. The Fat Cat
At first glance, it’s tough to determine what the Fat Cat is all about. Billiard tables and ping pong play areas are visible directly after one enters the establishment, and clientele sipping on everything from run-of-the-mill beers to convoluted, top-shelf mixed drinks can be seen filling the spaces in between.
Then the music plays.
Live, gorgeous jazz notes dazzle the ears–partially because of the players’ skills and partially because of the Fat Cat’s top-notch sound system–and make clear that the bar is about one thing and one thing only: fun.
Sit back, grab a beer, and relax at the Fat Cat–while enjoying marvelous jazz and maybe even playing a ping pong game or two. Everything’ll make sense afterwards.
4. Harlem Nights
Harlem Nights is all about energy–and that’s a rare thing in the do-no-harm bar landscape of today. Those who don’t like fast-paced music, fast-paced dancing, and fast-paced singing–sometimes the work of an audience member brought on stage–should patronize another bar.
However, those who do like these things–as well as having a good time–shouldn’t hesitate to check Harlem Nights out.
3. Bar Belly
It’s tough to know what to expect from a bar named Bar Belly, but the establishment makes clear right after one enters that, like its name, it is the physical embodiment of the unexpected.
Bar Belly looks nice and is well-arranged–but not snobbishly so, and not in a way that alienates anyone from enjoying its live music, which can be made possible by any type of band, with any different style, on any given night.
Patronize Bar Belly to experience the unusual, the untypical, and more than likely, the fun side of NYC music bars.
2. The Fat Baby
For whatever reason, bars with the word “fat” in their title really knock the ball out of the park, and the Fat Baby is no exception. The multi-level establishment plays grade-A (largely rock and roll) music seven days per week, serves killer drinks, and is likely the best social hub–or place to hang out, get to know people, and meet entirely new people–on this list.
1. Union Hall
A bar named Union Hall should be–no, needs to be–big, and this one is in every way that counts. Fireplaces, a garden, a massive stage, a library, boccie courts, a tasty restaurant, and a refreshing bar are just the appetizers at Union Hall; it’s consistently excellent music is the main course.
Bluntly, this is one of the best bars in all of New York City.
There’s never been a better time than today to check the listed bars–and their ear-popping music–out!