Live Music in Athens, GA
Live Music Central
The Athens, Georgia live music scene is one of a kind. Athens-based acts like R.E.M., The B-52s, Drive-By Truckers and Widespread Panic have gone on to achieve international acclaim. In addition to creating the Athens sound, this legacy has helped establish Athens as a well-known destination for musicians seeking a little inspiration and music lovers looking to check out rising stars and local favorites. Today, Athens' vibrant music scene continues to thrive with regular performances at venues throughout the city. Check out the Georgia Theatre and fabulous 40 Watt Club for up and coming acts as well as headliner performances in a variety of genres. The Classic Center Theatre and UGA Performing Arts Center are spacious venues that regularly host instrumental and classical music, Broadway shows and more.
Plan your Music Pilgrimage to Athens
A Music Lover’s Guide to Athens GA
Eager to experience Athens’ diverse music scene firsthand? Be sure to grab a free copy of the weekly Flagpole Magazine, where you’ll find a convenient schedule of the city’s musical happenings.
Plus, if you’re looking to dedicate a full day to exploring the sounds of Athens, embark on our Bands and Brews itinerary, which combines the city’s burgeoning craft beer scene with its long-established musical history for an exciting day that includes the Athens Music Walking Tour, delicious downtown eats and an evening full of drinks and live music.
For a complete Athens experience, make sure your itinerary allows time for a live performance at one of Athens’ internationally known venues, including:
- 40 Watt Club: This 500-person-capacity venue is often considered one of the nation’s most iconic, playing host to Athens-associated artists – such as R.E.M., Neutral Milk Hotel and of Montreal – as well as other acclaimed acts, from Nirvana to Snoop Dogg.
- Georgia Theatre: Though the space that houses this historic venue was built in the late 1800s, the site as it’s known today is the result of renovations following a 2009 fire. Since its inception, the Georgia Theatre has seen its fair share of notable artists, too, including big names, like Dave Matthews Band, Wu-Tang Clan and Sufjan Stevens.
Note for fall 2021: 40 Watt Club, Georgia Theatre and other bars and music venues have mask and/or proof of vaccine requirements. The social media accounts of the venues are the best place to obtain updates.
Visiting in the summer? Consider planning a trip around AthFest, a three-day musical extravaganza uniting notable artists from Athens and across the region to support local nonprofit AthFest Educates. Other summer music festivals include the Classic City American Music Festival and Sunflower Music Series.
Experience Live Music in Athens, GA
Complement your time in Athens with live music by browsing our list of events below, or explore our list of Athens, GA live music venues to learn more about the local scene.