Adelaide live music trail

Last updated 08 Sept, 2021
Suitable for walking or cycling Full day City-wide

Adelaide is a UNESCO City of Music and is recognised globally for our world-class music festivals, our entrepreneurial music industry, the quality and diversity of our musicians, live music venues and leading music institutes.

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Pick up a copy of this self-guided trail and map at the Adelaide Visitor Information Centre, 25 Pirie Street, Adelaide.

Eastern Music Walk

Situated in the heart of the East End on Rundle Street, the iconic Austral Hotel keeps you entertained throughout the year with Quizmeister Quiz Night every Wednesday from 7:00 pm. Local muso legends playing live in the front bar every Friday and Sunday and then in Mid-February to Mid-March. The Balcony Bar and The Bunka transform into performance spaces with comedy acts from across the globe bringing belly-aching laughs every night of The Fringe Festival. 

Pub and live music venue on the east end of Adelaide. Has live music most nights at the pub

There is something on for you at The Exeter every night of the week. A wide range of live bands play most nights, or live DJs play their favourite tracks. For a detailed guide to what's on at the pub this week, head over to ther Facebook page.

In Ebenezer Place on your way towards the Crown & Anchor you’ll find the perfect spot to pick-up your rockabilly swag and Zeppelin tee at Midwest Trader.

Hop over North Terrace and down Austin Street, through the glass doors of the Renaissance Arcade. Straight ahead sits Rerun Records with rows of second-hand vinyl and a collection of vintage Adelaide photographs.

Elder Conservatorium of Music is the oldest tertiary music institution in Australia and has been educating classical musicians in Adelaide since its inception in 1883.

In Vaughan Place, you’ll find Streetlight Adelaide, part bookshop, part record-store chock-full with a collection of musical biographies and documentaries.

Sitting underneath to the right of the Rundle Lantern and Hungry Jacks is Clarity Records. Run by local muso’s it’s a top-notch place to pick up the local sound.

Kick on back down Rundle Street for lively pubs renowned for their music nights and band rooms.

Head out into The Mall, once filled with vintage theatres packing out shows every weekend in places with names like The Regent, Grand Theatre and the Vosz Shop, you can still see the old facades today – if you’re lucky you might pass a resident busker heading east towards Rundle Street.

Western Music Walk

Pilgrim Uniting Church hosts free lunchtime music performances every Monday.

Adelaide Town Hall has an intriguing history of celebrity performances and has long been the location of choice for the Adelaide Symphony Orchestra, Australian Chamber Orchestra, Musica Viva Australia and Australian String Quartet.

If it’s a little earlier in the day wander down Playhouse Lane just off Light Square. Take a look at the facade of the Old Queens Theatre. It’s the oldest intact theatre in mainland Australia and in the 1920s it converted to a dance hall named the “Prado”.

A local dive known for heavy drinking and romping dance moves. In more recent years the theatre has hosted performances during the Adelaide Festival, and been the home of Stone Cutters Festival, showcasing the edgier side of the Australian scene with bands like God God Dammit Dammit, The Bennies, Will Wagner and Bleeding Knees Club.

If it’s after four o’clock, just a short stroll away, you’ll find this celebrated venue The Grace Emily Hotel which hosts Adelaide’s notorious open mic night, Billy Bob’s BBQ Jam. The bar has heard the likes of Tim Rogers, John Darnielle (Mountain Goats) and has seen unexpected cameos from Pink Floyd’s Bass player and Ringo Stars backing band.

The Lion Arts Factory, once a factory for preserving fruits, has recently changed hands and promises to continue being a music institution. In the past, it’s opened the doors for acts such as Paul Dempsey, Whitley, Ben Kweller, and Sonic Youth.

The Adelaide Festival Centre hosts a range of national and international theatre, dance and music acts.

Established in 1973, it is Australia’s first capital city arts venue and hosts more than one million people annually. As well as presenting theatre, dance, music, and exhibitions, Adelaide Festival Centre creates diverse festivals to inspire, challenge, educate, and entertain.

Nearby, discover Nexus Arts - multi-cultural in its roots, for over 30-years, Nexus has worked tirelessly to cultivate diversity in the city’s arts scene.

Further west you’ll hit the West Oak. The location, previously the World’s End has always had strong ties to the independent music scene.

Heading west down Hindley over Morphett Street, there’s a 10-foot hat-clad woman painted by local muralist Lisa King. Behind the pink doors below lives Jive. Home to Adelaide’s longest running Indie Pop Night ‘Gosh’ and a stage that’s seen the likes of Courtney Barnett, The Presets, Dead Letter Circus amongst countless other acts.

DJ's and Late Nights

Ancient World is an ever-evolving artist run multifunctional space on Kaurna land.

Bank Street Social is an award-winning underground bar in Adelaide’s West-End with a big focus on local.

The back-bar holds an enviable sipping-list of premium gin and whisky from Australia and around the world.

On the weekend you’ll find one of the best vibes in town with DJ’s spinning up house, disco and party jams till late.

Catch a range of live music and club beats Thursdays through Saturdays at Fat Controller.

Rocket Rooftop is an outdoor bar situated above live music institution, Rocket Bar offering a relaxed environment as well as a fully functioning bar serving premium cocktails, spirits, wine and beer away from it’s CBD location.

Located in the lofts of the picturesque Rundle St, Sugar is an intimate music venue with 5 pool tables, an art gallery, and a fine selection of beverages. 

Records and Gear

Whether you're into hip hop, jazz, funk, soul, R and B, classic rock or anything in between, these stores have you covered.

Twangcentral is a boutique dealer of fine vintage guitars, basses and amps. Other services include repair work and servicing.

All the latest technology in music, computers, headphones, ipods, CD's and games.

Home of acoustic guitars, electric guitars, guitar amps, audio & studio recording gear, DJ, public address, drum kits, percussion, keyboards, pianos and more!!!

A family run music icon selling everything from vinyl to sheet music. Sound equipment, busker amps, guitars and giftware.

Hip Hop cd's and vinyl, dj accessories, apparel and art supplies.

Independent record, film and book store located in the Adelaide CBD. Specialising in vinyl records and arthouse film.

Tucked away in Renaissance Arcade, off Rundle Mall, Rerun has a great range of secondhand records and photographs.

Pick up tunes from local artists with a strong focus on punk and hardcore music. Great selection of merchandise, books, zines, DVDs as well as handmade jewellery and crafts from local artists.

Famous Sites

Here are some of Adelaide's 'not to be missed' music sites.

Adjacent Elder Park is Adelaide Festival Theatre, home of the performing arts in South Australia. The Theatre’s stage regularly welcomes global productions from leading performance casts.

The venue has an intriguing history of celebrity performances and has long been the location of choice for the Adelaide Symphony Orchestra, Australian Chamber Orchestra, Musica Viva Australia and Australian String Quartet.

The Adelaide Town Hall welcomes performing artists looking to produce events as part of festivals throughout the year.

Her Majesty's Theatre is currently undergoing major redevelopment and will be reinvigorated and redesigned as a bigger capacity contemporary theatre space. A stylish fusion of modern architecture whilst still maintaining the integrity of the original heritage design, the theatre will be re-opened in 2020.

Her Majesty’s Theatre opened as the Tivoli in 1913. The theatre seated 2170 patrons and was regarded as the finest theatre in Australia. For many years Her Majesty’s was part of the famous Tivoli circuit. It is now the last surviving Tivoli theatre in the country and is an important part of Australia’s theatrical history.

Music SA is a non-for-profit organisation committed to promoting, supporting and developing contemporary music in South Australia.

The Rhino Room has been an Adelaide institution for over 20 years and the premier destination for live stand-up comedy. We also love and host live music and DJs with regular club nights Transmission, Night Call, Taking Back Saturday, No Scrubs, Disco Is Not A Dirty Word and Safari.