If you like listening to great bands and live music you’re in luck! There are numerous places across Chiang Mai that regularly feature live music, making it easy to sit back, order a drink, and let the tunes wash all over you.
You’ll find places that have songs in English and Thai, as well as a smattering of other languages.
If you dig the live music scene, here are some favourite places to check out around Chiang Mai:
As the name suggests, this is an outdoor bar. The Garden is a lovely and relaxed place to sit under the stars whilst having fun and enjoying one of the many drinks or food dishes available. Every Sunday evening there is a variety of bands and other performers to keep you entertained.
Located on the lively Nimminhemin Road, this is a popular weekend hang out spot for young Thai students – although foreigners are also more than welcome! Indeed, don’t be surprised if you are joined by a few Thais to drink and repeatedly chink glasses with a resounding “cheers”! Live bands play on Friday and Saturday evenings to a largely appreciative and enthusiastic crowd.
One of Chiang Mai’s most well-known drinking establishments, it is also a good place to enjoy a good meal at the same time. Situated next to the river, the cooling breeze is really refreshing and the views are nice. There are different bands that take turns to play throughout the evenings, with a terrific selection of musical genres. Whether you’re into blues, jazz, rock ‘n’ roll, sounds from the 60s and 70s, more modern stuff, or even a bit of hip-hop, their talents and wide repertoire will make sure you have a great night.
Boy Blues Bar
If the rhythmic sound of blues really floats your boat, head to Boy Blues Bar. You’ll find it near to the Night Bazaar and Kalare Night Market. Lively and lots of fun, it is a pretty popular establishment.
Several bands perform throughout the evenings, with smaller acts paving the way for the main band. The main band typically takes to the stage at around 9 o’clock. The atmosphere is good and the excellent music can be rather hypnotic!
A top spot for rock aficionados and lovers of the blues, this is one of the most well-loved music venues around the city. Attracting serious music fans, it’s a good place to hang out around like-minded people and just kick back to the music.
North Gate Jazz
A cosy joint that usually features jazz bands, it boasts a friendly atmosphere and service with a smile. Two bands rotate, keeping the sounds fresh, and there are also regular jamming and open mic sessions – you might just find yourself listening to the next up and coming name in the Thai music scene!
The acts play an eclectic mix of music, from lively tunes that are almost guaranteed to get people dancing, or, at least, tapping their foot along to the beat, through to the soulful and somewhat melancholic ballad-esque songs. The majority of the bands are acoustic groups and a lot of the guests just love to sing along!
Loved by locals, students, and several expats, you’ll find this place close to the university. If you’re there more for the live music try and get a seat or a spec outside as this is where the acoustic bands perform. Chill out to the sounds and relax! Bands do also play inside; the atmosphere is more upbeat and there are often people bopping along on the dance floor. The indoor bands alternate with a DJ who keeps the music pumping and the punters smiling.
Do you know of any other great places for live music in and around Chiang Mai? Where do you go to listen to your favourite sounds? And, do you know any local bands?