Get Out of Town, | Jan 28, 2016
Tunes to travel for
You'll find great music venues tucked in Southern Indiana's rolling hills.
If you’re looking for a place to hear great music, Southern Indiana offers some surprising options ranging from bluegrass to jazz.
Marc Allan, former music critic for The Indianapolis Star, is a fan of Bloomington’s music scene. “I’ve always found great places to see live music, great crowds and some really great music as well,” he says.
But Bloomington isn’t the only town with great music venues. With help from Allan and others, 812 found six music places you should visit.
If you like all genres, try Rhino’s All Ages Music Club.
331 S. Walnut St., Bloomington
Rhino’s features a large, black stage equipped with just the right audio specs any band (and audience) needs. According to Assistant Director Liv Mershon, the venue has every genre from punk to hip-hop, and even features karaoke and open-mic nights. Since Rhino’s is open to all ages, teenage bands are key contributors to weekend performances.
When to go? Weekends from 8 p.m. to midnight
Cost? Usually $5 cover charge
For dinner, visit Grazie’s Italian Eatery — a few minutes away.
If you like bluegrass, try Bill Monroe Music Park & Campground.
5163 IN-135, Morgantown
Famous for its world-renowned Bill Monroe Bean Blossom Bluegrass Festival, which runs for eight days in June, the 55-acre campground also stages many other festivals and events. You can visit the park in June for the John Hartford Memorial Festival or the Bean Blossom Gospel Jubilee in July. This venue has featured artists such as 100 lbs. of Bluegrass, Mountain Faith, Blue Velvet and many more.
When to go? During festival dates, which can be found at billmonroemusicpark.com
Cost? Festival ticket prices vary.
For dinner, visit Kathy’s Café in Morgantown — a 10-minute drive from the campground.
If you like rock, try The Bluebird Nightclub.
216 N. Walnut St., Bloomington
According to Allan, The Bluebird has launched many music careers. Staff members prides themselves in booking “high caliber talent” from all over. Some Bluebird performers include the Pimps of Joytime, Future Rock, Chris Cagle and Gillian Welch.
When to go? Live performances can be any night of the week.
Cost? Shows are $5 and up.
For dinner, visit BuffaLouie’s just a few blocks away.
If you like country, visit Mike’s Music & Dance Barn.
2277 IN-46, Nashville
This roadhouse offers more than just live country bands on the weekends. You can take country line dance lessons for a cover charge of less than $10. You can also rent the barn for a private party. According to Manager Candace Cox, the barn has the second largest wooden dance floor in the state.
When to go? Usually Friday and Saturday nights from 8-11 p.m.
Ages? All, depending on the event.
For dinner, visit the Nashville House in nearby Nashville.
If you like jazz/blues, visit Deerhead Sidewalk Café.
222 E. Colombia St., Evansville
Popular for its pizza, this venue also features music both during the week and the weekend. You can hear everything from jazz and blues to more modern music.
When to go? Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday, Saturday and Sunday nights
Ages? 21+ in the bar where artists perform. However, all ages can enjoy the music in a family room.
For dinner, visit Walther’s Golf & Fun — about five minutes away.