Apartment Living

The Best Cities for Live Music

The Best Cities for Live Music

When discussing live music, cities like Nashville, Los Angeles and New York are the first ones to come up.

Sure, one is the birthplace of country music and the other two are home to some of the biggest bands in the world.

Austin also hosts emerging and established bands at music and film festival, South by Southwest.

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In our search for the best cities for music, we found that the top 10 looks a little different than we expected. We looked at cities across the country with more than 100,000 people and more than five music venues, and we bet you can’t guess No. 1.

10. Omaha, NE


In the early 2000s, when indie rock bands like Bright Eyes topped the charts, everyone had their eyes on Omaha. Bands continue to play at the city’s many venues, such as The Slowdown, The Sydney, The Barley Street Tavern, O’Leaver’s Pub and Sokol Auditorium. With nearly half a million people, there’s one venue for every 100,000 people.

In between music concerts, check out the Old Market neighborhood, where you can have a good meal, see an art show in one of the many galleries and, if you’re lucky, catch one of the many street performers.

The average one-bedroom apartment in Omaha rents for $937 a month.

9. Portland, OR

portland oregon

Portland is known for its excellent coffee, growing microbrewery scene and ample bicycle paths in and out of the city. One other thing they have going for them? Music venues. The city has given birth to homegrown bands in rock, pop, jazz and folk genres.

Crystal Ballroom, a century-old venue with an original sprung floor, still hosts some of the biggest stars. For smaller shows, The Liquor Store, Valentine’s and the Wonder Ballroom host emerging bands for all music tastes. Currently, there are 1.2 music venues per 100,000 residents. There’s really something for everyone.

Expect to pay $1,923 on average for a one-bedroom apartment in Portland.

8. Denver, CO

denver co

Denver, the so-called Mile High City, has seen an explosion as a rising live music spot in the last few years. Red Rocks takes the cake as the most beautiful venue, an open-air amphitheater with a backdrop of sandstone monoliths. But while that live music venue takes the limelight, the city has several other venues to offer. Cervantes’ Masterpiece and The Bluebird Theater are just two other gems.

Denver has more live music venues than Austin — 16 total to be exact. That’s 2.2 venues per capita.

Denver rent comes in at $1,976 a month for an average one-bedroom unit.

7. Scottsdale, AZ


Known for its proximity to spas and golf courses, Scottsdale has more than a bit of rock ‘n’ roll within. The former home of architect Frank Lloyd Wright has more than 10 venues available for its musically-inclined residents.

On a seasonal basis, outdoor concerts and live music events pop up in Scottsdale’s parks, including the Desert Botanical Garden. Old Town Tavern, voted best music venue in the city, hosts folk and rock bands live on a weekly basis.

Scottsdale will set you back $1,743 a month for a one-bedroom apartment.

6. Las Vegas, NV

las vegas

It’s no surprise artists host their residencies in Sin City. Famous for its entertainment and neon lights, Las Vegas is home to some of the biggest stars. Celine Dion, Britney Spears and Jennifer Lopez are just some of the major names to have residencies in Vegas.

On top of that, with bands touring, you get even more options at other venues like the Allegiant Stadium. With 19 venues and more than 640,000 residents (plus visitors!), Las Vegas has close to 3 venues per 100,000 residents.

It’s the perfect place to do dinner and a show — visit one of the best restaurants on the strip and then head to see your favorite rock star.

Find your one-bedroom apartment in Las Vegas for $1,071 on average.

5. Rochester, NY

rochester ny

Every spring, Rochester hosts the Rochester Lilac Festival, a weekend full of regional acts across the musical spectrum. The city certainly has its residents covered — while there’s a smaller population, Rochester has almost three venues per capita.

While Rochester has major venues like the Blue Cross Arena, emerging rock, jazz and punk bands will be found in the smaller bars. Bug Jar, Abilene Bar and Lounge and Flour City Station have live music throughout the week. Maybe you’ll discover a new band or two at any of these venues.

You can call Rochester home for $1,386 on average for a one-bedroom apartment.

4. Fort Lauderdale, FL

fort lauderdale fl

Is there anything better than live music by the beach? Fort Lauderdale takes our No. 4 spot for best live music city, thanks to its plethora of venues and, of course, the annual Tortuga Music Festival. With six major venues and a population of around 180,000, Fort Lauderdale has 3.3 venues per capita.

For those into heavy metal, head to the Culture Room, where headbanging is a true hobby. If you’re looking for a more rock ‘n’ roll vibe, Revolution Live has several outdoor and indoor stages with electronic, funk and rock bands playing throughout the week.

All that fun in the sun will cost you — an average one-bedroom apartment in Fort Lauderdale runs about $2,121 a month.

3. Miami, FL

miami florida

Did you know that the Hard Rock Hotel near Miami is shaped like an actual electric guitar? That’s the music vibe in Miami. With 14 venues and three per capita, it’s hard not to be dancing along to Miami Sound Machine’s “Rhythm is Gonna Get You.”

The city has several festivals lined up throughout the year including the Ultra Music Festival, Calle Ocho Music Festival and all of the musical acts during the annual Wynwood Life Street Festival. Plus, many nightclubs, such as Gramps in Wynwood and Hoy Como Ayer in Little Havana, double as music venues.

Rent is Miami is the most expensive on our top 10 list. You’ll pay more than $2,500 on average for a one-bedroom pad.

2. St. Louis, MO

st louis

In St. Louis, blues and jazz are an integral part of the community’s heritage. It even has its own style — it’s more piano-based than other blues music. The Beale on Broadway hosts blues musicians every day, while the Grove neighborhood offers a range of spots to hear live music. There are so many venues that it equals four per capita.

St. Louis also has the second-oldest symphony orchestra in the country, so it’s worth adding it to the bucket list. Don’t miss one of their performances if you visit the Gateway Arch city.

Rent is St. Louis is fairly affordable compared to some of the other cities on this list. You can find a one-bedroom apartment for $1,227 a month.

1. Minneapolis, MN

minneapolis mn

Prince was born in it, Bob Dylan started his career in it and Minneapolis takes our top spot for the best city to see live music in the country. With 20 music venues, the city has close to five venues per 100,000 residents.

There’s a chance to see live music, no matter your taste, in every corner of the city. Minneapolis’ First Avenue club is an iconic spot for many big-time musicians — Prince tested material for and filmed parts of “Purple Rain” in the space back in 1983.

The average one-bedroom apartment in Minneapolis can be yours for about $1,500 a month.

The top 25 cities for live music

Did your city fail to crack the top 10? Before you start smashing your guitar in frustration, check out these areas that made the top 25 list.


To determine the best cities for live music, we looked at every city in the U.S. with a population of over 100,000 and at least five concert or music venues.

We then ranked each city by the following factors:

  • Live music venues per capita – 50%
  • Business density of live music venues – 50%

We then added up the scores for each city based on the rankings for these factors. The city with the lowest overall score was determined to be the best city for live music.

Live music venues per capita

To determine live music venues per capita, we divided the total number of live music establishments by the total population and multiplied that number by 10,000 to determine the number of establishments per 10,000 people.

Business density of live music venues

To determine business density, we divided the number of live music establishments by the total land area in square miles of each individual city to determine the business density. We multiplied this number by 10 to find the number of live music establishments per 10 square miles.


  • Population is based on 2018 estimates from the U.S. Census Bureau
  • Land area is based on demographic information from the U.S. Census Bureau
  • Total live music establishment counts are from a database of 8 million commercially available business listings. These listings may not reflect recent openings or closings.
  • Rent prices are based on a weighted average from Apartment Guide and’s multifamily rental property inventory from March 2020 to March 2019. We use a weighted average formula to more accurately represent price availability for each individual unit type and reduce the influence of seasonality on rent prices.

The rent information included in this article is used for illustrative purposes only. The data contained herein do not constitute financial advice or a pricing guarantee for any apartment.



Published at Fri, 13 Mar 2020 15:40:56 +0000

10 Tips on How to Decorate Your Apartment Like a Professional

You may think that apartments aren’t customizable — and for the most part, that’s true. But while you can’t rip out the countertops, you can inject touches of your personal style in several ways.

From temporary wallpaper to window treatments, it’s definitely possible. Take a look at these 10 tips so you can design the perfect home.

1. Include art

art on wall

Art is a terrific solution to a space that lacks personality. Include paintings, tapestries or smaller trinkets to make the apartment livelier. You can use temporary hooks or strips to adhere these pieces to the walls so you can easily remove them later. This choice adds character and makes a rental feel more like home.

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2. Work with mirrors

Apartments with limited square footage are popular, especially in large cities, because of their affordability. But not everyone likes to live in a space that resembles a closet.

Mirrors are a manageable fix. They create an illusion of depth, which in turn makes the area appear more open. Use sticky tape to hang them on surfaces or lean floor-length mirrors up against walls as a design tactic.

3. Hang curtains


Cover those run-of-the-mill blinds with some tasteful drapes. Window treatments allow you to customize your rental without making massive alterations. They also create a space that looks lived in and comfortable. Most curtains are inexpensive, as well.

4. Use temporary wallpaper

Maybe you can’t paint the walls, but need to update the area. Peel-and-stick wallpaper is the perfect solution. Unlike traditional wallpaper, this version is detachable, so you don’t have to commit to a style. These days, there are tons of designs available. Jazz up the bathroom with a bright color or create an accent wall in your bedroom.

5. Add flowers and plants


Did you know that plants can make you feel happier? Many cause us to feel calm and relaxed, while some remove toxins from the air. Bring in potted flowers and succulents to add a bit of greenery to your rental. You can use artificial plants if you don’t have the time to take care of the real deal.

6. Maximize storage

In rentals strapped for space, try to maximize storage as best you can. Pick up a bed frame with drawers and install shelves on the walls for added appeal and utility. Whenever you can, introduce options that are both attractive and functional. This way, you can make the most of your apartment.

7. Place rugs throughout


A simple solution to that ugly carpet is to use rugs throughout. Look for colorful patterns to brighten up each room. They look fantastic over both wood and tile. Many designers love to play with different textures in a single area, so keep that in mind. As a bonus, thicker carpets act as sound-proof barriers, so they can help drown out those noisy neighbors below.

8. Update hardware

For a cheap and practical fix, switch up the hardware throughout your rental. The handles and pulls on the cabinets in your kitchen and bathroom are incredibly simple to update. Unscrew them and then install the new ones — just remember to keep the originals around for when you move out. The result is an elegantly updated space.

9. Hide unattractive features


Is there a large water stain on the wall or a crack in the foundation? Instead of staring at those unsightly features, cover them. Arrange furniture and art strategically so only the best parts of the rental are shown.

10. Change the light fixtures

Light fixtures that are either too harsh or too dim can negatively affect the feel and functionality of a space. To remedy this, bring in floor and table lamps with a softer glow. LED bulbs can help you do this and save you money, too.

Change out shades for those that match your style. Add white string lights for a cozier feel. No matter what you choose, this is an easy and effective way to transform your rental. Just make sure you get permission from your property manager first!

Make your rental feel like home

Though apartments aren’t usually permanent, you can still decorate them with taste and style. This way, your personality can shine through. With these tips and tricks, your rental will feel like home in no time.



Published at Fri, 13 Mar 2020 12:00:55 +0000