The Sound of Birmingham City Centre: A Complete Guide to the City’s Music Scene

Last updated Aug 13, 2023

At the heart of Birmingham city lies a vibrant and diverse music scene. Whether you seek a relaxed gig, a grand performance at Symphony Hall, or the excitement of a music festival, there’s something for everyone in Birmingham's music scene.

Dynamic Live Music Venues

Birmingham boasts an array of live music venues, complementing its diverse music scene.

The Jam House

In the mood for some smooth jazz? Then look no further. Jam House offers night-long entertainment for jazz and blues enthusiasts. As well as outstanding music, the Jam House serves great food and drinks! The balcony restaurant also provides the perfect view to the show so you can rest assured you won’t miss anything!

Address: 3-5 St Pauls Square, B3 1QU

Opening Hours: Thu-Sat 6pm-2am

Phone Number: 0121 200 3030


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O2 Academy Birmingham

Established in 2000, the O2 Academy remains at the heart of the city’s music nightlife. The iconic venue boasts a seating capacity of 16,000, making it one of the premier locations for live music entertainment. The O2 has hosted some of the biggest gigs in the area with previous performances from artists such as Elton John, Iron Maiden and Beyoncé. The venue is unique in that it also supports emerging artists. This blend of well established artists and up and coming performers means there’s always something exciting happening at the O2.

Address: 16-18 Horse Fair, B1 1DB

Phone Number: 0121 622 8250


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Birmingham Symphony Hall

Widely considered one of the finest concert halls in the world, Birmingham Symphony Hall is home to the City of Birmingham Symphony Orchestra. Birmingham Symphony Hall hosts an impressive 270 events per year and offers a magnificent backdrop for classical music performances, orchestral concerts, jazz and much more. Since the redevelopment of the venue’s foyer spaces, there is also a café serving food and drink throughout the day. As well as serving breakfast and lunch, the café also offers pre-concert snacks, a wide selection of soft drinks, hot beverages, curated wine lists, craft beer and delicious cocktails.

Address: Centenary Square, B1 2EA

Opening Hours: Mon-Sat 11am-4pm

Phone Number: 01217803333

Hare and Hounds

Ah, Hare and Hounds, the perfect combination of history, music and great beer! This gem is nestled in the heart of King’s Heath and has been around since 1820. Whether it’s a live music performance you’re looking for or a club night with pals, Hare and Hounds has every music genre under the sun. From Indie, Reggie, Hip hop, soul to techno and beyond, there’s something for every music fan!

Address: High Street, Kings Heath, B14 7JZ

Opening Hours: Mon-Thu 5pm-12am, Fri-Sat 5pm-3am, Sun 2pm-12am

Phone number: 0121 444 2081



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Music Festivals

Birmingham’s music festivals are a highlight of summer in the city and provide diverse experiences for any music enthusiast.


Mostly Jazz Funk & Soul Festival 

Now in its 14th year, the Mostly Jazz Funk & Soul Festival is aging like fine wine! Celebrating a diverse range of UK artists alongside international trail blazers, Mostly Jazz Funk & Soul Festival has lots to offer. With a stunning lake backdrop, the Mostly Jazz Funk & Soul Festival provides a unique experience a world away from city life. The best part is that the festival is actually less than 2 miles from the city centre! With previous artists such as Public Enemy, The Sunshine Band, Chaka Khan, the Jacksons, this festival continues to attract an impressive lineup of artists.

When: July 12-14, 2024

Where: Moseley Park, 93B Alcester Rd, B31 8DD


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Simmer Down Festival

For fans of reggae, the Simmer Down Festival is a celebration of community and culture. Showcasing reggae music in all its forms, from classic roots reggae to contemporary dance hall, music lovers can have the ultimate jam session! It’s worth mentioning that the festival features art workshops, activities, a craft market and food stalls. Not to mention there’s a dedicated area for children featuring face painting, arts and crafts, and fun rides!

When: July 28, 2024

Where: Handsworth Park, B20 2BY


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Solihull Summer Fest 

It’s not summer without Solihull Summer Fest! Featuring a wide range of musical genres across multiple stages, there’s never a dull moment at Solihull Summer Fest. And fear not, hungry festival goers! This festival also has delicious food and drink options for everyone, from burgers, wood fire pizza to middle eastern street food. Plus, with family friendly activities galore such as arts and crafts workshops, petting zoos and puppet shows, it’s the perfect day out for kids also! 

When: July 20-21, 2024

Where: Tudor Grange Park, Solihull, B91 3LU


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Birmingham Mela 

Birmingham Mela is UK’s biggest South Asian music festival showcasing traditional music, dance, food, arts and crafts. Staging some of the biggest names from the U.K and overseas, this festival truly highlights the richness of South Asian heritage by bringing people together from diverse backgrounds. The music genre at the festival ranges from classical ragas to contemporary fusion, capturing the variation of South Asian music. A must-see festival this summer!

When: July 22-23, 2024

Where: Victoria Park, Smethwick High Street, B66 3NJ


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MADE Festival

Have your glow sticks at the ready as the MADE festival is coming back for its 10th year! The MADE festival has uniquely combined 200 of their favourite artists, across 10 stages, along with some of the best local talent and bands. Featuring an array of electronic genres, from house and techno to drum and bass, the MADE festival is bound to have you dancing. MADE festival also has a trendy street food village on offer with Digbeth Dining Club, along with live graffiti, making a truly unique festival experience!

When: Aug 3, 2024

Where: The Digbeth Triangle, B12 0LD


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Birmingham England

staying at birmingham's jewellery quarter

Cadbury World, The Birmingham Museum & Art Gallery and The National Motorcycle Museum