Philadelphia unquestionably has some of the best music venues and concert halls in the country. Theres’ a worthwhile show nearly every single night that caters to music fans of all stripes. Of course, going to a different concert every night can be a little hard on the wallet, so consider taking an uberPOOL to the concert instead of trying to find costly parking. With uberPOOL you’re paired with other riders that are headed in the same direction as you, but only paying a fraction of the cost you normally would instead of paying the full fare. You might even share a ride with someone going to the same show, giving you an excellent an opportunity to make new friends who share the same taste in music as you do.
Here are a few best places to check out music in Philadelphia:
Theatre of Living Arts
Right on South Street you’ll find a staple of the Philly art scene, The Theatre of Living Arts, generally referred to as the TLA. The theater was originally a nickelodeon in 1900, and has at various points been a (way) off-off broadway theater. Today the venue presents some of the best up-and-coming musical acts around. But what might be best of all is that Jim’s Steaks, a Philadelphia institution, is right down the street and open until 1am, the perfect spot for your post-show snack.
Originally called the Arch Street Opera House, the Trocadero is a historic theater that opened all the way back in 1870. Over its 100 years in existence, the Troc has shown everything from minstrel shows, Vaudeville, musical comedies, art house films, opera, and fine arts performances. After a brief stint as a nightclub in the 80s, it was turned into the concert hall it is today, where you can see a wide range of great bands and hilarious stand-up comics.
You’ll find the legendary Tower Theater just outside of Philadelphia in Upper Darby. When it opened in 1927, it was a massive theater for both movies and Vaudeville acts. After a near-devastating fire in the 70s, the theater was remodeled and transformed into one of Philadelphia’s favorite music venue. Fun fact: David Bowie recorded his first official live album, David Live, during his infamous Diamond Dogs Tour at the Tower in 1974.
First Unitarian Church
If there’s one thing that the Philly music scene gets right, it’s all-ages shows. Born out of being overlooked by mid-tier punk and indie bands for shows in the New York region, R5 Productions has been holding all-ages shows in the basement of the Philadelphia First Unitarian Church since the 1990s. If you’re looking for the best punk and indie rock shows around, then this scene is perfect for you. R5 also promotes notable shows out of other venues like Union Transfer and Boot & Saddle.
Opening in 1994, The Electric Factory—quite literally a converted warehouse venue that was originally an electric factory in the neighborhood of Spring Garden—is the home to a variety of rock and hip-hop performances. The 3,000-capacity venue has also started hosting outdoor shows in the summertime, which perfect for those that like to have the city as their backdrop while watching one of their favorite bands.
Wells Fargo Center
Not only is the Wells Fargo Center home to the Philadelphia Flyers, 76ers, and the professional soccer Soul team, they host massive performances by some of the largest touring acts in the world. Billy Joel and Bruce Springsteen have sold out the 20,000-capacity stadium a combined 100 times, giving audiences as memorable a concert experience as anywhere else.