While you may know Louisville for being the largest city in Kentucky and home to the Kentucky Derby, the city also boasts a loud and proud concert scene. In fact, Louisville is known for producing some of the country’s earliest jug band music, the name for when a group of jazz, blues, or folk musicians use improvised instruments such as jugs and washboards to produce songs and melodies.
Louisville is also home to the West Point Country Opry. Many famous musicians and bands have come out of Louisville but not all have been country, jazz, or jug band artists. In fact, Bryson Tiller is a rapper from Louisville who had a Billboard Number One album in 2017 called “True to Self.”
Located along the Ohio River with a population comparable to Nashville, Tennessee, Louisville offers an array of concert venues and bars to enjoy musical performances. From the Louisville Palace Theatre and Headliners Music Hall to The Mercury Ballroom and Papa John's Cardinal Stadium, there’s no shortage of spots to get your groove on. Taylor Swift, U2, Bon Iver, Demi Lovato, and many more have all graced stages across Louisville.
Another popular spot among locals and tourists alike is Louisville Champions Park. Complete with over ten multi-use lawns and various concession stands, this is a great spot to enjoy the outdoors while dancing and singing along to some of the best acts around. Waterfront Park is another outdoor area in downtown Louisville where you can attend the city’s annual Forecastle Fest in July.
With a capacity of over 22,000 people, the KFC Yum! Center is one of the country’s best venues. It’s been said that Garth Brooks had the largest attendance of any other performer at the KFC Yum! Center back in 2016. Garth Brooks' concerts drew more than 70,000 fans over a four-day period.
Louisville Concert Venues
With so many excellent venues, it can be hard to decide which one to catch a show at! If you enjoy being outdoors during live performances, Iroquois Amphitheater, Waterfront Park and Champions Park are spots you should definitely check out. If your favorite popular artist is in town, chances are that they’ll play at either the KFC Yum! Center, Papa John's Cardinal Stadium, or Mercury Ballroom. If a more intimate setting is what you crave, then Zanzabar, Louisville Palace, or the Brown Theatre may be worth a visit.
Louisville Concert Ticket Prices
The average cost of concert tickets in Louisville is $126 per ticket. However, this can vary based on who is performing, and when the concert is taking place. Be sure to check ticket availability for your favorite artists to see what is available.
Louisville Music Festivals
Louisville hosts a number of music festivals throughout the year. The Forecastle Festival has been held each July since 2002 at the Louisville Waterfront Park. With a range of genres represented, past performers have included Jack White, Sam Smith, Outkast, The Avett Brothers, Sturgill Simpson, and many more. Another popular festival held each September is the Bourbon and Beyond festival in Champions Park which combines great artists with culinary creations for folks to enjoy. Also held at Champions Park is the annual Louder Than Life festival where concertgoers can camp out and enjoy the best rock legends and breaking talent that the industry has to offer.