Under the string of lights that crisscross up Grant Ave, rock ‘n roll is alive. Great dance floors, both new and recurring bands, and drink prices that are on the lower side of outrageous are all sure signs of a good time. I spent Saturday night in the North Beach district on the hunt for live music and here is what I found:
1232 Grant Ave.
How can you not feel welcome with these handsome gentlemen ushering you in? The Saloon is the oldest bar in SF and claims to have the best blues in the Bay Area, which I can definitely attest to. If you have a soft spot for the oldies, this joint is go-to for great live acts, some room to swing, and unparalleled good vibes.
1337 Grant Ave.
Not sure if it was the $6 Moscow Mules or the fact that the band rocked both “Satisfaction” by the Rolling Stones and “Hey Ya” by Outkast, but Tupelo definitely gets the gold medal. With an entire wall decked out in framed photographs of music legends and a killer jukebox for in between sets, Tupelo makes way for a great atmosphere. Oh, and did I mention they do weekend brunch? Game-over.
1353 Grant Ave.
Marked by Irish flags over the doorway, Maggie McGarry’s is perfect for day-to-night entertainment. With the best stage in the area for live cover bands and karaoke, this venue has plenty of elbow room without losing that authentic pub feel. The crowd was wild, and the drinks were flowing. If that’s your scene, I’ll see you there next week.
561 Columbus Ave.
Great for food, conversation, and live background music, this spot might be the perfect first stop on your adventurous night out. I ordered a Stella at the long, modern-style bar and was serenaded by the sweet sounds of the acoustic guitar. No complaints here.
North Beach is historic for its street performers. I am a firm believer that some of the best, most innovative beats come from these pavement personas. If you like what you hear, don’t forget to pay it forward.
Za Za Za
No night out in North Beach is complete without 1:00 am pizza. Available by the slice at nearly every corner, this veggie delight was the perfect way to end my eventful evening.