THE SODA BAR
This quirky dive bar hosts music seven
nights a week—mostly local bands—and
has arcade games, a pool table, 20 taps and
3615 El Cajon Blvd., Normal Heights
This neighborhood bar and music joint is
a good place to discover a new or cutting-edge band in a novel ambience with striped
wallpaper and black booths, a perfect spot to
sip a local craft beer.
3519 El Cajon Blvd., Normal Heights
San Diego’s iconic hub for rock ’n’ roll,
this dive bar meets concert venue at the
edge of downtown holds around 200 people and showcases everything from name
bands to up-and-comers. Good alternative
and punk acts, too.
2501 Kettner Blvd, Little Italy
Solana Beach’s outstanding venue, sister
to Aspen’s Belly Up, hosts big names in
a small space (600 max). Look for The
Wailers, Bonobo, The English Beat, Rufus
Wainwright, Macy Gray, Jimmy Buffet and
143 S. Cedros Ave., Solana Beach
This three-story jewel can entertain more
than 700 people and serves up a mix of
music from electronica, indie rock and
tribute bands to Latin rhythms, ’80s nights
and name bands.
1337 India St., Little Italy
BY THE BAY
You can’t beat the waterfront views and
open-air setting, featuring A-listers and
legends like David Byrne, Steely Dan, The
Beach Boys, Ben Harper, Jackson Browne,
Bob Dylan and Ringo Starr. Dinner and
hotel packages available as well.
2241 Shelter Island Drive, Shelter Island
THE OBSERVATORY NORTH PARK
This restored 1939 theater is a happening
venue attracting talent the likes of Third
Eye Blind, Dilated Peoples, Silversun Pickups, and rapper DMX. Lots of indie rock,
metal and hip-hop.
2891 University Ave., North Park
SLEEP TRAIN AMPHITHEATRE
This massive outdoor concert space in
Chula Vista holds more than 20,000
people and has diverse upcoming acts like
The Cure, Slightly Stoopid, Phish, Duran
Duran and Brad Paisley.
2050 Entertainment Circle, Chula Vista
The Padres share their ballpark with big
names like Taylor Swift, Paul McCartney,
Jewel, Billy Joel, deadmau5 and more.
100 Park Blvd., downtown
There’s no end to great live music in San Diego, from intimate shows at cozy
Kaaboo Del Mar
bars to A-listers at arenas, as the city offers something for every musical taste.
provide the soundtrack
to the summer at the San
Diego Symphony’s Summer Pops, which takes over
Marina Park South for 10
weeks of entertainment (July
1–September 4). The Vans
Warped Tour stops at San
Diego’s Qualcomm Stadium
with more than 20 bands
(Aug. 5). Kaaboo Del Mar
is a festival at the Del Mar
Fairgrounds that will bring
more than 100 musical and
comedy acts to seven stages: this year’s performances
include Jack Johnson, The
Avett Brothers, The Goo Goo
Dolls and Jeanine Garofalo.