South Lamar live music scene: Your top 5 spots

Sean Crooks, an Austin native, works at South Austin Music Shop, which will be celebrating their 30th anniversary in October. Located on S. Lamar, this establishment has seen the music scene evolve from a primarily blues town to a vibrant melody of sounds, ranging from punk to bluegrass to house music. Needless to say, Austin has seen it all.

Sean, who has worked at South Austin Music for 15 years, also plays for local indie pop/rock band, The Alice Rose. After the “.com-ers” came into town, Sean notes a shifting musical identity — with a growing population comes an expectedly diverse taste in music.  Although S. Lamar has experienced rampant urban sprawl, as evident of the perpetually-under-construction high rise condo developments, the music scene remains untainted. In fact, it may have even experienced a resurgence thanks to some of Austin’s most loved music venues, many of which are located on S. Lamar. Sean lists some venue recommendations that not only hosts unforgettable live music experiences but places real value on their musicians. Sean recommends Saxon’s Pub, Broken Spoke, One-2-One Bar, Do512 Lounge, and Baker Street Pub and Grill. And I have to say, I agree.

Saxon’s Pub

This Austin icon, which as been around since the dawn of time (actually since 1990), features a plethora of buzz worthy artists. It has also been the location for films, videos and countless live recordings. A popular concert space with FREE weekday happy hour shows, a listening room and relaxed atmosphere. What more could you ask for?

Broken Spoke

Widely considered the best honkey tonk in Texas, there’s no better way to enjoy a night of dancing. This classic, old school dance hall features wooden dance floors with sawdust, picnic tables and authentically Texas decor. The music is varied (two step, swing, waltz, etc.) and all geared to dancing. A good ol’ time, I can guarantee it.

One-2-One Bar

Established in 2004, owners Gregg and Destinee Ware originally opened it as a neighborhood bar in downtown Austin, featuring local musicians a few times a week until they eventually needed a new space in order to accommodate larger live shows. One-2-One Bar is a huge supporters of the local music scene, featuring some of Austin finest local talent. This place comes highly recommended, make sure to check it out!

Do512 Lounge

This private performance venue features regular live bands and events in a laid-back, intimate setting. Not only does this place have incredible
sound and ambiance, the musicians are top-notch. If you enjoy small, performances from amazing musicians, this is the place for you! Keep in mind, however, that capacity is very limited, so events are invite only.

Baker Street Pub and Grill

As a proper British pub that doubles as a live music venue, you’ll be happy to know that there is no cover charge for live blues. So, If you are looking for an enjoyable dinner and great live music, I’d stop by Baker Street Pub and Grill. Added bonus, they have happy hour 2-9 p.m. EVERYDAY (and all day on Sunday).