Turn it up: Chapel Hill's top 5 music venues to visit now

Memorial Hall. | Photo: Tod K./Yelp

Looking to check out the best music venues near you?

Hoodline crunched the numbers to find the top places to hear live music in Chapel Hill, using both Yelp data and our own secret sauce to produce a ranked list of where to venture next time you're in the mood for a musical experience.

1. Caffe Driade

Photo: rachael p./Yelp

Topping the list is Caffe Driade. Located at 1215 E. Franklin St., Suite A, the cafe is the highest-rated music venue in Chapel Hill, boasting four stars out of 297 reviews on Yelp. Music lovers should visit the spot at night on Wednesday, Friday or Saturday (May through October), when the front patio hosts a variety of live artists, lit by candlelight.

According to its website, menu choices range from handcrafted espresso drinks and coffee to whole leaf tea, baked goods and a selection of wine, beer and cigars. Specialties include the Driade Shake, which blends espresso and ice cream.

2. Local 506

Photo: blake m./Yelp

Next up is Local 506, situated at 506 W. Franklin St. Opened in 1992, Local 506 is an all-ages rock club in downtown Chapel Hill. Visitors can expect a showroom and a full bar, as well as a lineup of up-and-coming touring musicians and local bands. Memberships, which cost $2, are required to enjoy the shows. With four stars out of 58 reviews on Yelp, the music venue has proven to be a local favorite.

3. The Cave

Photo: Messer K./Yelp

The Cave, located at 452 1/2 W. Franklin South, is another top choice, with Yelpers giving the dive bar and music venue four stars out of 40 reviews. The upcoming lineup includes artists like folk Americana group The Bennys, dark rock singer Claire Morales and more. Check its website for updates.

4. Memorial Hall

Photo: William J./Yelp

Memorial Hall, a music venue and performing arts spot, is another much-loved go-to, with 4.5 stars out of 13 Yelp reviews. The building is part of the Carolina Performing Arts and has upcoming performances from Neko Case, Brooklyn Rider and Magos Herrera and blues rocker Buddy Guy. Check out its website for a more detailed lineup. You can find the historic theater at 114 E. Cameron Ave.

5. Nightlight Bar & Club

Photo: william j./Yelp

Then there's Nightlight Bar & Club, which has earned 4.5 stars out of 11 reviews on Yelp. The cozy space will soon play host to techno from Alt + Sponge Bath, traditional folk from Alice Gerrard, Kay Justice and Gail Gillespie and more. Find the full list of upcoming performances here. The music venue and bar is located at 405 1/2 W. Rosemary St.
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