By: Ashley DeNardo
Everyone in Morgantown knows about 123 Pleasant Street. It balances keeping the indie music scene alive with also being one of the most popular venues in town. It’s a great place to rock out with the crowd.
However, sometimes people need a calmer live music experience. Did you know there are many venues for local musicians to play for small audiences? The best places in Morgantown for intimate performances, from bluegrass to jazz, are found within the many eateries and bars around the city.
- Black Bear BurritosFrom the locally farmed ingredients to the mountain music, BBB ensures an authentic time within Appalachian culture. Its menu has myriad vegan and vegetarian choices and its own beer on tap. The venue works hard to be conscious of the environment, so you can be sure all waste is recycled.
Almost every night, local musicians line up at 6:30 to play for the guests dining at both the downtown and Evansdale locations. Most of the musicians who play here stay true to the Appalachian atmosphere the restaurant works so hard to maintain.
- The Blue Moose CafeThe Blue Moose Cafe is located in the heart of downtown. As a cafe, it provides gourmet coffee, tea and beer as well as breakfast and lunch. One of its unique features is its obvious commitment to being healthy, organic and environmentally friendly. This is a prime spot for vegetarians.
While you enjoy the smell of dark roast coffee and the free wireless connection, you can also enjoy live music. Local musicians, like Shenendoah Thompson, play acoustic sets of rock and bluegrass in a relaxed, cozy setting.
- Morgantown Brewing Company
Morgantown Brewing Company is known for its extensive list of craft beers, which are brewed in-house. Rather than the Appalachian cultural atmosphere seen in the last two locations, this restaurant and local venue is all about craft beer and good all-American food.
The music here ranges from jazz to bluegrass to country and more. The WVU Jazz Students get exposure here every so often. It also hosts CD-release parties for artists occasionally, such as it did for Apple Pappy last October. Morgantown Brewing Company gives locals the option to compromise between a rowdy night at the bar and a calm evening at dinner.
- Wit’s End Lounge
This lounge is located in the Ramada Inn’s Conference Center. They also boast a menu of craft beers, sandwiches and appetizers. Besides the usual live music, karaoke and comedy nights take place every month.