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Our Favourite Small Live Music Venues in Sydney

Our Favourite Small Live Music Venues in Sydney

Sydney has long been a haven for musical talent from both near and far. It is also a city known for its live music venues, from Sydney Opera House to The Enmore Theatre and Hordern Pavilion. But away from the big crowds and arenas are a plethora of small venues, from underground bars to lowkey pubs and compact inner-city clubs—where revellers convene in a more intimate setting. To get your finger on the pulse of the local music scene, this is our roundup of the best small live music venues Sydney has to offer. 

Mary’s Underground 

Sitting below popular burger joint Mary’s in Circular Quay is Mary’s Underground—an unexpected subterranean restaurant featuring an extravagant French bistro-inspired menu and live music throughout the week. It sits on the site of The Basement, a former live music venue that has been entertaining Sydneysiders for over 40 years. The venue’s legacy lives on in the shape of Mary’s Underground, with weekly entertainment featuring local and international artists and genres ranging from jazz to folk-tinged rock, indie and alternative pop. On the menu, you can expect a lavish array of options from oysters, clams and caviar to a whole dry-aged duck or lobster with duck fat chips. 

Camelot Lounge 

Located in ever-trendy Marrickville, Camelot Lounge is one of Sydney’s best boutique live music venues. The colourful venue is home to the Camelot Lounge, which sits on the top level and Django Bar, the intimate downstairs venue. Both spaces, with walls adorned with posters, artworks and camels, host a variety of artists from Australia and beyond. Think soul and funk parties, Jimi Hendrix tributes, British rock nights, intimate gigs and cabaret shows. Dimly lit with an eclectic atmosphere, Camelot Lounge offers an easy-going menu of pizza and grazing plates to nibble as you party the night away. 

Oxford Art Factory 

Inspired by Andy Warhol’s Factory in New York during the 60s, Oxford Art Factory is an iconic live music venue that has seen the likes of Lady Gaga, Tame Impala, Foals, and Mumford and Sons grace its stage. With a prime location on Oxford Street in Darlinghurst, the intimate venue is broken into three areas, ‘The Gallery’, ‘The Live Art Space’ and ‘The Cube’. While probably best known for its amazing live music acts, the space also showcases visual and performance art by both local and international artists. Despite opening its doors in 2007, Oxford Art Factory remains one of the city’s most-loved live music venues and will continue to host some of the best live music Sydney has to offer. 

Goodgod Small Club

Goodgod Small Club is an underground tropical oasis located in the heart of Sydney on Liverpool Street. The inner-city club first opened its doors in 2010 and is best known for its club nights, live music acts and bao buns. The intimate club and ‘one-stop funhouse’ is made up of the Cuban-inspired Front Bar, where bartenders serve up cocktail jugs, beers and wines and Belly Bao with a menu of bao buns, burgers, noodles and fried chicken wings. The main attraction at Goodgod Small Club is the Danceteria— an intimate taverna-style live music venue with a semi-circular stage and epic dance floor. Although small, the club has seen some impressive acts, including Diplo, 2 Many DJs, Lorde, Flight Facilities, Alt J and Little Dragon, to name but a few.

Whether you are flying into Sydney to catch your favourite band or planning a big night out in the city, Ovolo Woolloomooloo or The Woolstore 1888 by Ovolo in Pyrmont offer the ultimate luxury accommodation with all the perks.