You love your city and all of its talents, and you can bet these places love ‘em too!
By Patrick Jude
You ever seen Purple Rain? I hope so. It tells of a time when people hopped club-to-club just to hear the local bands, and they dug it too! Some of that magic was once lost, but over the past few years, in a refreshing resurgence, live music has truly become a quintessential part of any town’s budding night-life. These are your neighbors, your coworkers, and members of your community.
One of the biggest concerns of tune seekers though is the value of the artist; are they getting a cut? Some beers?
Or did they drag a grand in equipment just to bring the bar a crowd, and then hit the road around last call?
As a musician with eight years of experience playing in Central Florida I’ve seen a good bit.
I’ll be the first, without hesitation, to admit there are some venues that are a real drag to play…but no point in focusing on the negative. You love your city and all of its talents, and you can bet these places love ‘em too!
The Falcon – Orlando
Just a few blocks from the main streets of Downtown Orlando, on the corner of Washington and Jefferson, sits The Falcon. Immediately recognizable by the stunning swan mural on its east-facing wall, The Falcon is the archetype of a low light artist’s den. Shows are held every weekend and entrance is always free. This local show spot is also particularly intimate, partially due to the closeness, more so however because the venue frequently employs one band for a whole night’s worth of music. Their beverage prices are more than fair, and they frequently offer free sake to customers. Along with this, the fancy couches and the adorning of local painters art on their walls makes The Falcon a true gem of Orlando.
819 E Washington St.
Ella’s Folk Art Café – Tampa
There’s nothing better than hearing a band in a room with raised roofs, and Ella’s has just that. Coming in at two stories, Ella’s lush acoustics create a soundscape as the sound travels to you…and your PiZzaa!! Ella’s will tantalize all of your senses with their live music, string lit patio, their professional kitchen, and at the end of the night you can let those senses go at the bar. Tucked away just outside of the City of Tampa, Ella’s Folk Art Café serves an emporium of quality for performers and customers alike.
5119 N Nebraska Ave.
The Social / 64 North – Orlando
The Social has always been a well-respected corner stone of Orlando, but over the past couple years it’s had some new talent in the booking and sound departments that have made it that much better. While still booking national acts, and even convincing some legends to do one off Florida dates, The Social and its connecting building, 64 North, have successfully began showcasing more and more of the local talent within Central Florida. Perhaps the most endearing quality of the joint effort is to make Monday’s a night to go out, something downtown Orlando desperately needs. Every Monday you can treat yourself to a trio of bands, with free entrance and FREE popcorn! Make. Mondays. Lit. Again.
64 N Orange Ave
Tir na nOg Irish Pub – Daytona
This is actually the only venue on the list that I haven’t personally performed at, but I’ve heard only good things from bands based out of its native Daytona, all the way to Tampa. If your reputation precedes you over 100 miles away, you must be doing something right. Among the stories of late nights turned early mornings, a resoundingly unanimous “Randy’ll take care a ya” envelopes Daytona’s favorite music joint by those who have played the stage.
612 E International Speedway Blvd
Café Da Vinci – DeLand
Just a little past Cassadaga lays a small college town that holds a piece of my heart, DeLand. It’s almost become ritualistic at this point, a couple times each year I pull up to DeLand, grab a coffee, go to Cliff’s Book store and play Café Da Vinci shortly after night rolls round. Hosting two outdoor stages in its magnanimous and well-lit patio, complete with outdoor bar, Da Vinci has the aesthetics down; and you can’t beat the sound of an outdoor stage!
112 W Georgia Ave
Born and raised in Orlando, Patrick Jude is a recent graduate of The University Of Central Florida. He holds a B.A. in English Literature as well as an A.A. in Jazz Performance. Jude enjoys performing and is an active musician in Central Florida. As a member of The Getbye he fills the most glorified position of any band…Bass.