The Best Chattanooga Bars With Live Music

What’s better than sipping a beer while listening to excellent live music?

You might share our disappointment over the loss of the annual music festivals, Riverbend and Moon River, but don’t think for a moment that Chattanooga’s music scene has lost its mojo. Far from it! The city is still pulsating with a vibrant and happening music scene that’s rocking almost every night.

Chattanooga has its share of venues dedicated to live music, but a number of restaurants and bars around the city offer live music as well. We’ve got plenty of classic spots still kicking each night, but there are a few new players worth visiting.

Keep reading for some of the best Chattanooga bars and restaurants with live-music lineups:

Cherry Street Tavern

Cherry Street Tavern
719 Cherry St
Since opening in 2021, Cherry Street Tavern has quickly become a go-to destination in downtown Chattanooga for enjoying live music on any night of the week. They host open mics, jazz nights, a monthly artist in residence series and regularly book great artists from around the city. There is usually no cover charge on weeknights, but some of the weekend shows are ticketed. See our venue spotlight for Cherry Street Tavern here.

Courtesy of Backstage Bar

Backstage Bar
29 Station St
The Backstage Bar in Chattanooga is a beloved little bar with a relaxed vibe on the grounds of the Chattanooga Choo Choo hotel. It’s known for its great cocktails and an impressive selection of whiskeys and scotch. The large covered porch overlooking Station Street offers a perfect setting for enjoying drinks and people-watching. They host live music every Wednesday through Sunday, featuring many local favorites like Danimal and Friends, Joey Winslett, and Tim Lewis. There is usually no cover charge.

Courtesy of The Woodshop

The Woodshop
5500 St Elmo Ave
The Woodshop Listening Room in the historic St. Elmo neighborhood is a fantastic, intimate venue for live music, with a relaxing barroom and a beautiful outdoor area. Lots of great beer options and an extremely friendly staff, it provides the perfect setting for chill musical vibes. This spot is an excellent choice for enjoying a drink in a cozy atmosphere just a few feet away from live music. From vinyl nights to jazz on Wednesdays and shows featuring touring artists, the diverse music offerings cater to a wide range of tastes. The unique setting, welcoming staff, and community events make it a must-visit spot in Chattanooga. Usually there is no cover charge, but some shows are ticketed. See our venue spotlight for The Woodshop here.

Courtesy of Gate Eleven

Gate 11 Distillery & Bar
1400 Market St
Gate 11 Distillery and Bar in Chattanooga is a charming spot for local spirit enthusiasts, offering a delightful selection of cocktails. Housed in a renovated train station, it offers cozy interiors for a cocktail while enjoying live music. Gate 11 Distillery features live music several nights a week from local musicians like Jimmy G, Ryan Oyer, Josh Wheeler and others. They’ve even been a host venue for the Tennessee Songwriters Competition. They host a Monday Night Blues Jam each week. With award-winning spirits and a welcoming staff, Gate 11 stands out as a must-visit distillery and bar experience. They usually do not have a cover charge.

Tremont Tavern

Tremont Tavern
1203 Hixson Pike
Tremont Tavern, located just about one mile from the Northshore, stands out as Chattanooga’s most welcoming neighborhood bar. Renowned for its seriously world-class burgers and enormous beer selection, this local spot also serves up a laid-back atmosphere and friendly neighborhood bar vibes. The real highlight, however, is its reputation for hosting one of the best open mic nights in the city. Beyond the tasty burgers and endless beer options, Tremont Tavern is a cozy spot to grab a drink and hear the best singer-songwriters in the city at the Tuesday open mic shows. They do not have a cover charge.

Courtesy of Wanderlinger

Wanderlinger Brewing
1208 King St
Wanderlinger Brewing in Chattanooga offers a top-notch brewery experience with consistent live music events as its standout feature. Hosting events like the Tennessee Songwriters Competition, the Wanderlinger Music and Arts Festival, Wanderbeats electronic dance parties, the brewery knows how to put on great shows. With live music several nights a week, including jazz on Thursdays and brunch-time tunes on Sundays, Wanderlinger serves up diverse musical offerings—from electronic to bluegrass. It’s a go-to spot for music and drinks in Chattanooga. And don’t forget to try the Czech Lager! There is usually not a cover charge.

Courtesy of HiFi Clydes

HiFi Clydes
122 W Main St
HiFi Clyde’s, located on Main Street in Chattanooga’s Southside, is a retro-style honkytonk bar known for its energetic live music concerts every weekend. With fantastic bar food, such as the heavenly Brisket Nachos, and quick service, it offers a laid-back atmosphere perfect for enjoying great food and drinks while watching local bands like Tropic Sol, Backwater Still or The Hollerin’ Frogs. Whether you’re lounging, dining, or catching live music, HiFi Clyde’s is a guaranteed good time. There is usually no cover on weeknights, but weekend shows have cover charges ranging $5-10.


505 Cherokee Blvd
Sluggo’s, a vegan cafe and back alley bar on Cherokee Blvd, is primarily known for its delicious vegan nachos, wings, soups and sandwiches, but did you know it’s a regular venue for live music shows? Sluggo’s has been hosting punk shows in its downstairs concert space for over a decade. Located a short distance from the Northshore, the upstairs area offers a cafe and full bar, becoming 21+ after 8 pm. The plant-powered pub hosts local artists and brings in bands from around the region. Shows usually have a $10 cover charge.

Courtesy of Whiskey Thief

Whiskey Thief
102 Walnut St
Whiskey Thief, a classy rooftop bar at the Edwin Hotel overlooking the Walnut Street Bridge and Tennessee River in Chattanooga, is recognized for its high quality cocktails and tasty small plates. The venue consistently features live music (including local songsters like Danimal), providing a perfect accompaniment to the breathtaking rooftop scenery. The atmosphere is top-notch, making it a great place to hang out in the evening. While the drinks are on the expensive side, the unique location and ambiance justify the cost. Whiskey Thief is a must-visit destination for individuals in search of outstanding music, captivating views, and an unforgettable experience. There is not a cover charge.

Courtesy of Oddstory Brewing

Oddstory Brewing
1604 Central Ave
Just a couple blocks off Main Street is Oddstory Brewing Company. The brewery boasts a remarkably comfortable family and dog-friendly atmosphere. The brewery shines with a vast outdoor space, a splendid rear patio hosting occasional live music featuring talented local artists. The beer selection is diverse, offering Belgians, sours, lagers, and ales. A variety of seating options, including swings, benches, and tables, make it an ideal spot for gatherings of beer and music lovers. There’s almost never a cover charge to get in for beer and music. Note: parking is sparse, a rideshare will make things more convenient for you.

The Boneyard
26 Station St
The Boneyard on Station Street in Chattanooga is a lively music venue and bar, celebrated for hosting impressive live shows featuring local bands and national touring acts. This unique spot goes beyond conventional bars by offering regular jazz nights, songwriter circles, local showcases, and DJ nights, offering live music entertainment almost every night. The bar has impressive cocktails and cheap beer with an industrial-meets-graffiti ambiance. If you’re uncertain about which genre of live music you’d prefer but still want to experience a variety, visit the Boneyard. You’ll be pleasantly surprised by the diverse styles they frequently host. There is usually not a cover charge on weeknights, but weekend shows may have a cover. See our venue spotlight for The Boneyard here.

Courtesy of Oddstory/Greenhouse

The Greenhouse
336 E M L King Blvd
The Greenhouse is a taproom operated by Oddstory Brewing in the original building where the brewery got its start in Chattanooga. It’s a favorite hangout spot with a unique blend of delightful oddities. This taproom hosts occasional live music shows featuring local bands like Et Cetera and unique “vinyl nights” with Yellow Racket Records spinning records all evening. The atmosphere is a quirky mix of cozy seating surrounded by lush greenery, creating a chill environment. Beyond the fun plant-filled decor, expect a fresh beer selection, lots of people watching and activities like puzzle competitions and board games. There is usually no cover charge.

Courtesy of Puckett’s

2 W Aquarium Way
Puckett’s Restaurant, nestled next to the Tennessee Aquarium in Chattanooga, offers a delightful blend of good southern food, generous portions, and excellent service. A standout feature is the live music on Thursdays, Fridays, and Saturdays, showcasing local and regional artists like Pan-O-Ram, Paul Edelman, Jason Lyles & The Legitimizers. Who wouldn’t love quick service, pulled pork and country rock and roll? The relaxed atmosphere and great music make Puckett’s a reliable spot for delicious dining and lively entertainment. There is no cover charge.

Courtesy of Feed

The Feed Table and Tavern
201 W Main St
Feed Table & Tavern, nestled just off East Main Street in Chattanooga, is a vibrant bar and restaurant renowned for its regular live music on the covered patio every Thursday. Local artists like Gabe Newell, Zech Dallas, and Eric Turner grace the stage, creating an electric atmosphere. Beyond the music, patrons praise the cozy ambiance, friendly staff, and a delectable menu featuring standout dishes like fried calamari, fish, and chips, and a mouthwatering burger. The industrial-style decor and lively music enhance the overall experience, making Feed a must-visit spot for an exceptional dining and entertainment fusion.

Courtesy of Exile

1634 Rossville Ave
Exile, a distinctive dive bar located just off Main Street in Chattanooga, has become a popular spot for live edm shows, local DJs and occasional bands. This (mostly) outdoor beer-only joint offers a cozy backyard with two fireplaces, creating a comfy, casual atmosphere. Despite its small stature, Exile has a decently sized patio area. The beer selection is diverse though not exactly dive bar prices. It’s a little bit weird and can sometimes get wild, but the edm shows and goth DJ nights are worth experiencing! There is usually a cover charge of about $5-10 on weekends.

Courtesy of Whiskey Cowgirl

Whiskey Cowgirl
1819 Broad St
Whiskey Cowgirl in Chattanooga is a rowdy gem, drawing praise for its good food, cool atmosphere, and friendly staff. It’s a vibrant environment featuring a pool and mechanical bull. Live bands provide the heartbeat of this place, turning it into the perfect spot for fans of music and drinks. Whether you’re into country tunes, dancing, or simply soaking up fun and energetic vibe, Whiskey Cowgirl has it all. There is occasionally a cover charge, typically $10.

Courtesy of St. John’s Meeting Place

The Meeting Place
1274 Market St
The Meeting Place in Chattanooga offers a sophisticated dining experience with excellent food and attentive service. The upscale atmosphere caters to various occasions, but the highlight is Thursday nights when a live jazz band creates a captivating ambiance. Perfect for those seeking refined dining and musical enjoyment. There is no cover charge, but the menu is a bit pricey. On jazz nights Sazeracs and French 75s are only $5!

Courtesy of Paloma Bar de Papas

Paloma Bar de Tapas
1352 E 3rd St
Paloma Bar de Tapas, located on the 10th floor of the Westin Hotel in Chattanooga, offers a unique atmosphere with stunning views of the city and mountains. Known for its diverse tapas menu, the bar boasts unique dishes such as bacon-wrapped dates and calamari. What’s better than tapas and the lively ambiance provided by live music performances. They regularly host local singer-songwriters several nights a week. They usually do not charge a cover.

This post was originally written and published in March 2024 by a live music fan in living in downtown Chattanooga, Tennessee.