We asked, you answered: 7 music venues in Arizona for a more intimate show

Crescent Ballroom in downtown Phoenix (Shutterstock Photo)

By Robert Gundran

April 25, 2024

The biggest artists in the world come to Arizona to perform at places like Footprint Center, State Farm Stadium, and Desert Diamond Arena. But what about those less-popular artists and local musicians looking for a place to get started?

Arizona has plenty of smaller music venues. We asked what some of your favorites were, and here’s what you had to say:


The Gaslight Music Hall

13005 N. Oracle Road, Tucson

This venue hosts concerts, comedy shows, dance parties, and more.

The Gaslight Music Hall is an old-timey venue just outside Tucson in Oro Valley with wood-paneled walls.

It has plenty of seating during many shows and a full menu with pizza, salads, sandwiches, wings, and deserts.

Check out The Gaslight Music Hall’s upcoming shows here.


The Van Buren

401 W. Van Buren St., Phoenix

The Van Buren in downtown Phoenix is one of the best medium-sized venues in the Valley. It has plenty of space for jumping around or dancing during concerts.

There’s a bar on the second floor that overlooks the stage if you just want to relax and enjoy the music away from the crowd.

It’s right next to Ziggy’s Magic Pizza Shop, one of the best spots for pizza in Phoenix.

Check out the Van Buren’s upcoming shows here.


Crescent Ballroom

308 N. Second Ave., Phoenix

Crescent Ballroom is a half music venue and half lounge in downtown Phoenix. You can see the lounge and Cocina 10, the ballroom’s in-house Mexican restaurant, from the street.

Step a bit deeper inside Crescent Ballroom and you’ll be greeted by its small and intimate music venue.

The venue hosts happy hours, live music, comedy shows, and local artist showcases. Some of the events are even free!

Check out Crescent Ballroom’s upcoming shows here.


Valley Bar

130 N. Central Ave., Phoenix

Valley Bar isn’t really a secret, but its alleyway entrance makes it feel like you’ve stumbled across a lowkey speakeasy. If you haven’t found the doorway before, it’s on the southwest corner of Central Avenue and Monroe Street.

The bar and music venue is underground in a basement, a rarity in Arizona. The Rose Room, Valley Bar’s bar, is named after Arizona’s first female governor, Rose Mofford.

The drink menu has dozens of signature cocktails named after local politicians. It’s unashamedly Arizona.

Valley Bar’s concert space is off to the side and hosts DJ sets, concerts, comedy shows, and even political debates.

Check out Valley Bar’s upcoming shows here.


191 Toole

191 E. Toole Ave., Tucson

Tucson’s 191 Toole might be the smallest venue here.

It’s in downtown Tucson right next to Borderlands Brewing Company, a tattoo shop, and a skateboard shop.

The venue has a small bar and small stage for local and touring acts.

Check out 191 Toole’s upcoming shows here.


The Rebel Lounge

2303 E. Indian School Road, Phoenix

The Rebel Lounge has been in Phoenix for almost a decade. It started in 1979 as The Mason Jar.

Many of the most famous acts in rock like Fall Out Boy, Jimmy Eat World, and Green Day played early shows at The Mason Jar.

The Rebel Lounge still hosts small and local acts. Check out the venue’s bimonthy EmoNightPhx events, where DJs play emo music from the past to tap into your nostalgia.

Check out The Rebel Lounge’s upcoming shows here.


Yucca Tap Room

29 W. Southern Ave., Tempe

Yucca Tap Room has been hosting live music for over 50 years.

The venue also has a full bar with dozens of beers on tap.

Yucca also hosts open mic nights and viewing parties for Arsenal matches, if you’re a fan of soccer.

Check out Yucca Tap Room’s upcoming shows here.


READ MORE: We asked, you answered: Here are 8 of Arizona’s best lesser-known museums


  • Robert Gundran

    Robert Gundran grew up in the Southwest, spending equal time in the Valley and Southern California throughout his life. He graduated from Arizona State University's Walter Cronkite School of Journalism in 2018 and wrote for The Arizona Republic and The Orange County Register.



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