It may be cold outside, but the live music scene in Topeka is hot. With venues from bars and restaurants to concert halls and coffee shops, local and regional musicians are sharing their talents across town.
Conquer the dreary winter months by enjoying local fare, drinks and good company while enjoying some tunes and supporting Topeka-area musical artists.
Address: 510 S.W. 49th St.
Enjoy Happy Basset Brewing Co. craft beers alongside a wide selection of live music weekly. Food trucks provide fare on Fridays and Saturdays, and guests can listen to music indoors or while sitting outside under the stars on the large outdoor deck and patio seasonally.
Happy Basset Barrel House will host Villains Dance, a 1980s tribute band out of Kansas City on Saturday, Jan. 22. Featuring the music of Bon Jovi, AC/DC, Def Leppard, KISS, Van Halen and more, stock up on Aqua Net and join them.
Address: 118 S.W. 8th Ave.
The Celtic Fox is an Irish pub located in downtown Topeka that serves traditional pub fare, as well as Irish favorites like bangers & mash and Shepherd’s pie. Looking out at the Kansas Statehouse, guests can enjoy the outdoor patio during warmer weather or head inside the newly remodeled dining room to hear a full Irish jam session from 2-4 p.m. every Saturday.
Address: 1417 S.W. 6th Ave.
Bringing live, original music to Topeka since 1993, The Boobie Trap Bar provides local musicians the opportunity to perform with state-of-the-art sound and light systems. The 100-seat venue hosts local bands on the weekends, along with open mic nights on Tuesdays. If karaoke is more your scene, head over on Sundays, Mondays, Wednesdays and Thursdays.
Address: 2848 S.E. 29th St.
A historic dancehall dating back more than a century, The Vinewood hosts live music and dancing every Saturday night from 7-10 p.m. The Steve Kile Band will perform next Saturday, Jan. 22, and The Vinewood will welcome The Coots, a classic rock/alternative band on Saturday, Jan. 29. A full-service cash bar and snack bar are available.
Address: 5331 S.W. 22nd Place
Located on the west end of Fairlawn Plaza mall, The Lazy Toad offers live entertainment some weekends, as well as jam nights for local musicians on Thursdays and karaoke on Wednesdays. With an indoor seating capacity of 300, a lounge and patio, there’s room to meet all your friends.
On Feb. 18, The Lazy Toad will host a 1980s night with live music. See its Facebook page for more details.
Address: 2125 S.W. Fairlawn Plaza Drive
With its laidback coffee shop vibe, The Class Bean is the perfect stop to take in some live blues, jazz, acoustic rock, bluegrass, folk or Celtic music. Featuring music by local singers and songwriters, catch them from 7:30-10:30 p.m. on Friday and Saturday nights.
The Simple Pieces, a 1940s, 1950s and 1960s acoustic group will play Friday, Jan. 21 at The Classic Bean, and Saturday night, Jan. 22 will feature folk, rock and country singer George Scheckel.
Brass Rail Tavern
Address: 401 N.E. Emmett St.
Located in Topeka’s Oakland neighborhood, the Brass Rail Tavern is a local dive bar that opened in 1933 at the end of Prohibition. Believed to be the oldest bar in the Capital City, live music is offered as scheduled. Catch the acoustic stylings of Mike Mc next Friday night, Jan. 21. Patio seating available.
Address: 600 N.W. Paramore St.
A neighborhood bar in North Topeka, Gayle’s offers live music most Friday and Saturday nights, as well as karaoke Sunday and Monday evenings beginning at 7 p.m. Play a game of pool or hit up the jukebox between performances.
White Concert Hall
Address: 1700 S.W. Jewell Ave.
On the campus of Topeka’s own Washburn University, White Concert Hall is the performance space for Washburn’s award-winning music department. Host to Sunflower Music Festival in June, the Topeka Symphony Orchestra, and the Topeka Festival Singers, as well as other community concerts, White Concert Hall offers a variety of live music options to the city.
Instrumental performances scheduled for February include L’Histoire de la Clarinette on Feb. 3 and the Thalea String Quartet on Feb. 10.
Address: 800 N. Kansas Ave.
Established by the owners of Dirty Girl Adventures, the venue at Compass Point is located in the heart of the NOTO Arts & Entertainment district. Featuring live, local music just blocks from the Kansas River, they host performers every first and third Friday of the month, in addition to other weekend evenings as scheduled.
Summer performances are staged in the outdoor courtyard, while cold-weather performances move indoors to the Backroom Bar and focus on solo and small group artists. Just One More Band will play classics from blues, crossover blues, and rock n’ roll with a little country styling thrown in on Friday, Jan. 21 from 6:30-9:30 p.m.