Canada is renowned for its lively nightlife and entertainment. From dancing to strolling through bars, or listening to live music, cities in Canada have something for everyone. While the Air Canada Centre, Massey Hall, Rogers Arena and Bell Centre are great concert venues, they don't quite capture the atmosphere of small music venues. That's why we've put together a list of the 50 best small music venues in Canada that don't get as much attention as the big ones.
The Music Gallery in Toronto, Ontario is a great place to start. Founded in 1976 by Peter Anson and Al Mattes, it's a great spot to enjoy live music. Another great spot is Manhattans Pizza Bistro & Music Club in Guelph, Ontario. This venue organizes live music most nights and has a variety of beers imported from Great Britain, Canada and Belgium to choose from.
If you're looking for a rock and roll bar, This Ain't Hollywood in Hamilton, Ontario is the place to go. The Nanaimo Bar (pronounced nuh-nye-mo) is another popular spot for Canadians at weddings and funerals, birthdays, and bar mitzvahs. It's a three-layer, unbaked square that has been a source of comfort for Canadians for over seven decades. The Bovine Sex Club in Toronto, Ontario is another must-see music venue. Not only is it one of the best bars in Toronto, but it's also one of the best small music venues in Canada.
It was so good that novelist Margaret Atwood included it in her book “Canlit Foodbook” which collected writings and recipes by Canadian authors. Canada has an abundance of small music venues that offer an atmosphere unlike any other. From the Music Gallery in Toronto to the Bovine Sex Club in Toronto, there are plenty of places to explore and enjoy live music. Whether you're looking for a rock and roll bar or a place to listen to jazz or folk music, there's something for everyone in Canada.