Like any good college town, the music scene in the backyard of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and the neighboring town of Carrboro is rightfully vibrant. From bars to clubs, performance halls to basements, come see all that these towns have to offer. If you're new to the area, or just looking for a good time, move to the music at our top five favorite venues.
5. Caffe Driade: If electro-rock isn’t for you, Caffe Driade offers authentic and approachable jazz seven nights a week. During the summer, Caffe Driade offers a live show weekly.
4. The Cave: Walking outside of The Cave on Franklin Street, one can always hear music streaming from the unique venue. Located in an underground alleyway, The Cave is a well known venue for somewhat unknown artists. Don’t chalk this up to irrelevant musicians — this bar is always crowded with a line that runs out of the door.
3. Southern Rail: Located across from a now defunct railway in a renovated railroad car, Carrboro’s Southern Rail is another local favorite. This restaurant, bar, and music venue will feature everyone, from local favorites Squirrel Nut Zippers to world famous R.E.M. Southern Rail gives off a historic vibe, and with good reason. The hand-carved wooden bar was originally created for the "Hotel Washington," the hotel across the street from the White House. Have a drink with the ghosts of Elvis Presley, Ronald Reagan and Aretha Franklin, all frequenters of the Washington bar during their lives.
2. Local 506: Owned by Cat’s Cradle, this space is great for emerging artists as well as Chapel Hill favorites. A Franklin Street favorite, If interested in local NC sounds from all genres, this is the place to go.
1. Cat’s Cradle: This famous venue has held world-famous musicians Nirvana, John Mayer, Iggy Popp as well as newly emerging performers such as Haim and The Gaslight Anthem. And they host these bands for cheap. The venue itself is approachable and intimate, allowing for a more personal experience from some of your favorite bands. A short walk from the UNC-Chapel Hill campus, it’s on the bucket list of students and music enthusiasts alike.
Bonus: While in town, be sure to stop by award-winning Beyu Caffé. Located in Durham, about 20 miles from campus, the Beyu Caffe offers an eclectic venue that combines jazz, craft beers, coffee, and hard liquor. Don't worry about missing campus too much: university professors and students enjoy performing on the Beyu stage. Owned by a Duke University graduate, this rival cafe is hard not to love (we've tried).
For more venues around the Triangle, explore this LocalWiki.