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4 Live Music Spots in Greater New Bedford

By Shonna McGrail

It’s safe to say that we all look forward to the weekends, but sometimes routines can get a bit monotonous.  Going to the same bar with the same crowd every Friday night provides a sense of comfort but it can get old fast.  If you’re looking for something new to do in Greater New Bedford area, consider checking out one of these five locations for live local music.  Each of these venues varies in atmosphere and music style, so you are bound to find something that fits your interests the next time you have a free weekend to plan for. Make sure you check out the New Bedford Guide Event Calendar for music and other events in the New Bedford area.

1. Rose Alley Ale House (SpotlightReview)
94 Front Street
New Bedford, MA

Rose Alley Ale House New BedfordRAAH ranks as one of the most popular place to catch local bands because it has live music almost every day of the week.  That and the fact that it is one of the most popular local bars for its vibrant atmosphere, great pub food and variety of draft beers.  Still, Rose Alley definitely tops the list in terms of providing regularly booked live entertainment, and frequently features some of the most popular local acts such as Rebecca Correia or blues/funk band Shipyard Wreck.

I have definitely seen some good musical performances at Rose Alley over the past few years from both original performers and cover bands.  However, there is one downside to this venue and that is size.  Rose Alley has a pretty cozy set up which makes it ideal for catching up with friends, but it can get a bit cramped when there’s a good band taking the floor for the night.  This isn’t to dissuade you from getting your groove on at RAAH; just be prepared to stand (or get there nice and early.)

A full event schedule can be found at Rose Alley Ale House’s website: http://www.drinkrosealley.com/

2. Bayside Lounge
125 Sconticut Neck Road
Fairhaven, MA

Bayside Lounge FairhavenBayside Lounge is probably a name that is less familiar to most people than Rose Alley, but it is sort of a gem.  Located on Sconticut Neck Road this bar has a very laid back atmosphere to it and as they say on their website, “You can easily find three generations of family members at ‘The Bayside’ at any given time.”  It has a working class, fishermen’s bar sort of appeal complete with pool tables and plenty of space to sit.

Bayside Lounge makes this list because it has live music at least 2-3 nights out of the week, and every time I have gotten to catch a performance there I have had a blast.  The bands I’ve seen play at Bayside are usually classic rock or blues cover bands, and they really get the place rocking.  Since Bayside has a lot more space than your typical bar, there is plenty of room for an impromptu dance floor to be formed.

A calendar of events can be found on their website at: www.baysidelounge.com.

3. The Pour Farm Tavern and Grill
780 Purchase Street
New Bedford, MA

Pour Farm Tavern New BedfordThe Pour Farm needs no introduction to any Downtown New Bedford regular.  Thanks to its impressive list of beers on tap and its trendy atmosphere, The Pour Farm Tavern and Grill is a major attraction to beer connoisseurs from throughout the region.  However, it isn’t just having an appreciation of finely crafted brews that makes the Pour Farm special; they also have a great focus on live music.

At The Pour Farm, local musicians can be seen taking the stage nearly every night of the week, whether it be on Open Mic Mondays or when the Neal McCarthy Problem Band performs on Thursdays.  As with RAAH, The Pour Farm is a small venue, and the band plays in the front corner, so in order to really watch them play the crowd sort of ends up blocking the front door.  It’s a little inconvenient, but not so terrible when you consider that the sound really fills the whole place, so front row is not necessarily a priority.

For more information on live entertainment at The Pour Farm, go to: http://www.pourfarm.com/.

4. The Candleworks Restaurant
72 North Water Street
New Bedford, MA

Candleworks Restaurant New BedfordI have never been to The Candleworks Restaurant, but it has come highly recommended to me for both the food, the atmosphere, and now the live music.  The Candleworks is yet another fixture of downtown New Bedford, however, unlike the previously mentioned downtown bars, The Candleworks is not a tavern but more of a fine dining place.

Located in a 200 year old historic landmark, The Candleworks has a lot of character to its design, and a lot of flavor in its menu.  With the tagline “Indulge in Excellence” it seems to be this restaurants top priority to create a dining experience that will be memorable, and that includes live entertainment every week.  Based on images of the venue, The Candleworks seems like an ideal place to be serenaded by live music on a romantic dinner, not necessarily a place for beers and rock music.

For more information on The Candleworks Restaurant’s entertainment schedule, go to: http://www.thecandleworksrestaurant.com/.

About Michael Silvia

Served 20 years in the United States Air Force. Owner of New Bedford Guide.

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  1. You forgot one of my favorite places to grab a bite, cold beer and watch some of the most talented bands in the area…. Where everyone knows one “Knuckleheads”!

  2. The Celtic Coffee House has been featuring Irish music on Fridays, from 8:30-10:30 PM.

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