Rebekah Cooke from Forage Modern Workshop is back with her second lot of recommendations of where to listen to some of the best music in Minneapolis. If you missed her first part you can catch it here…
Let’s start with the basics. The mainstay. First Avenue. This iconic club is where all of the locals aspire to fill and where all the greats come through, or make themselves at home, like our beloved Prince. Band names in stars surround the exterior of the building, the 90s gutter punk bouncers at the door, the iconic bathroom floors – It always feels the same every time I go, and I hope it never changes.
INSIDER TIP: A lot of shows sell-out at First Avenue, aka I never go without a ticket in advance. Also, DJ Jake Rudh holds killer dance parties, called Transmission here. Don’t miss one if you’re the dancing type.
DRINKS: Cocktails will be rail drinks and poured fast. Nothing fancy.
FOOD: Unless you want cardboard pizza, plan dinner in advance or afterwards (note: my favorite post-show restaurants because they serve food late are Bar La Grassa and Hi-Lo Diner, depending on where you’re staying).
PRICE: Ticket prices vary depending on the act. Anywhere from $25 – $100 per ticket.
Only just a couple of years old, Icehouse has become a staple for hearing live music. They’ve been really cool to the local music scene and if you’re not a gramma like me, you can head there basically any Wed-Sun evening around 10pm and catch a show. Because it is a restaurant and where the stage is located, it usually gets pretty crowded, so be prepared to stand in tight walkways or uncomfortably in front of someone chowing down on their burger slathered with foie gras or have a server constantly sigh as they walk passed you 20 million times.
INSIDER TIP: One of the coolest things about Icehouse’s live music calendar is their Sunday Brunch shows! Usually on Sundays at 11am, the stage hosts music to entertain you while you throw back those Mimosas. And there’s no cover!
DRINKS: They have decent cocktails, an extensive bourbon and whiskey list, but if you’re looking for a good Boulevardier or other craft cocktail, head to Eat Street Social down the street.
FOOD: It’s a restaurant so you can get pretty decent food at Ice House, but beware – if there’s a show you might not be able to easily get a table. My typical MO is to head to the smaller bar in the back (yes! They have 2 bars) and order a hot dog, which comes with a PBR. A really good hot dog.
PRICE: Usually pretty cheap, you can get in for $10.
I’m so excited for The Palace to open! Occupying an old (and HUGE!) theater in downtown St. Paul that’s been vacant since 1984 (so as long as I’ve been alive!), The Palace Theater is slated to open spring of 2017. And it comes with much anticipation. Downtown St. Paul has been needing a place like The Palace. Right now, the only places larger acts (think Kanye and Beyonce and Stevie Nicks) play are The Target Center or Xcel Energy Center, which are stadium-like and lack intimacy. Even though Palace will be 3 times the size of First Avenue, the decor and set-up, giving the option of standing room or balancy seating is going to feel really special. And it’s going to be run by the great folks at First Avenue, so we’re going to get the same awesome service and gigs like we do in Minneapolis. Plus, Forage Modern Workshop is partnering with First Avenue to design and furnish the green room and artist dressing rooms, so if you’re in a band and get the chance to hang out here, you’re welcome!