Surrounded by the historic city wall, and filled with religious landmarks, one might think that York is just for sightseeing tourists, but in fact York has an exciting nightlife with great live music venues to keep it going. Whether you’re a student trying to be in the know of the best places to go out, or trying to spice up your weekend away with a night of good music, have a look at our guide for some of the best places in York to see live music!

The Basement

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Hidden beneath York’s City Screen cinema, this venue is right in the heart of York. Offering everything from comedy to cabaret to music, this small can-touch-the-ceiling venue makes for one of those amazing, intimate gigs where you’re never more than a few metres from the musician on stage.

If you’re not after those run of the mill acts – you know, the one’s that you’ve already seen a hundred times before just with different names – then make sure you visit the Basement and watch something a bit better. The unbelievably cheap prices mean a spur of the moment night out isn’t going to damage your wallet at all, so sit back and enjoy a guilt free evening!

How to get there: City Screen Picturehouse, 13-17 Coney Street, York YO1 9QL

The Fulford Arms

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The Fulford Arms is more than just your average pub. Their friendly atmosphere and dedication to good music has transformed the pub into everyone’s local. The public house itself has been there since 1822, but the building has had many different names over the years, until 1976 when it settled as the Fulford Arms, and underwent some huge renovations in 2014 to make the venue the perfect place to accommodate great entertainment.

Expect to see everything from local up-and-coming bands on the rise, to music legends playing an intimate gig, all for really affordable prices so you don’t have to worry about spending too much. Save your money instead for one of their 6 cask ales on tap!

How to get there: 121 Fulford Rd, York YO10 4EX
Capacity: 150


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Twenty-four years and thousands of bands later, Fibbers has become the place to be out in York. Now one of the longest running music venues in the country, Fibbers lies in the centre of York and has played host to some of the biggest acts in its time, from the Killers to Biffy Clyro and to the 1975.  At least three club nights each week, and a whole host of touring musicians local, national and international alike.

Now the most well-known alternative stage in York, Fibbers is what pulls the exciting acts through York’s city walls. Having moved locations to Toft Green in 2014, Fibbers now has better facilities, comfier seating, bigger bars and great viewing balconies. You can be up close in the thick of it as the artists play onstage, rather than at the back of a field or arena barely making anything out.

How to get there: 3-5 Toft Green, York YO1 6JT

The Crescent

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Previously a ”˜Working men’s club’, The Crescent has been redesigned as a community venue, turning into a family business. Two brothers wanted to save the venue and try give York a more inclusive, alternative venue to listen to music and other activities, ensuring that anyone and everyone is welcome through their doors.

Inside the venue has two rooms each with a bar, one able to accommodate for 100 and the other 250, allowing for The Crescent to hold two separate events simultaneously and try to cater for everyone.

How to get there: 8 The Crescent, York YO24 1AW

York Barbican

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Although the Barbican hosts everything from comedy to musicals, you can’t deny that they get some truly fantastic musicians on stage as well. This lovely space has been around since 1989, and reopened in 2011, getting back into the swing of things immediately with an array of extra activities like rock climbing and swimming, as well as on-site bars and cafes for you to enjoy.

In the past, The Barbican has welcomed to the stage huge acts from Morrissey to Paolo Nutini and Paloma Faith, and continues to bring in big names.

How to get there: Paragon St, York YO10 4AH
Capacity: 1900

Curious to see who’s playing next in York? Check out TickX’s guide to gigs in York.