Antica Biblioteca Valle
This restaurant and lounge bar is located in central Rome, near the Pantheon and Piazza Navona, and has been an institution in the city for decades. In the 1960s it was one of the centers of the so-called “Dolce Vita” (literally, “Sweet Life”). It regularly attracted Hollywood personalities in the ilk of Humphrey Bogart and Vittorio De Sica. Despite retaining the historical building and the household name, Antica Biblioteca Valle has now turned into a modern setting with some great live piano music.
Largo del Teatro Valle 9, Rome, Italy, +39 06 6813 6830
Red Jack is a pub located in Fiumicino, an area outside of central Rome. From Thursdays to Sundays, it offers live music that caters to a variety of musical tastes: from punk rock to rockabilly, heavy metal to blues, with all the in-betweens. Enjoy one of their solid whiskeys or indulge in one of their carefully crafted cocktails as the evening unfolds.
This famous bar is located in San Lorenzo, both a historical neighborhood and a university area on the peripheries of central Rome. The atmosphere is laid-back, with live music every night. The musicians and singers are either local or of international calibre and they are all carefully head hunted. Genres range from house to rock. You won’t find any cover bands here, only home-grown tunes coming from the hearts of those who play them. The bar has a diverse selection of cocktails and is in the hands of Carlo, who infamously prepares mixers which function as “points of no return”.
via di Porta Labicana 24, Rome, Italy, +39 06 6401 1757
This bar and restaurant is the perfect choice for a laid-back aperitivo (from 7pm onwards), or even for a relaxing dinner. Tables are set outside and live music generally starts at 10pm every evening. The al fresco terrace is spread over a flight of steps with wooden stools often packed with chatting locals. Alternatively, there are four rooms indoors which have fresh decor and pleasant surrounds for eating and listening to music.
via di Monte Testaccio 65, Rome, Italy, +39 06 5728 9712
The Boogie Club
The Boogie Club is halfway between a pub and a steakhouse. The menu comprises mainly meat dishes, while the bar has a wide selection of internationally renowned brands. There are in-house cocktails, loads of craft beers and plenty of Italian wine. Live music runs regularly until the beginning of June – expect blues and rock in excess.
Founded on the 30th March 1984, Big Mama has been the “home of the blues” in Rome for more than 30 years. As the name suggests, blues bands are regularly hosted, all selected for their quality and reputation. Alongside the blues, Big Mama also occasionally offers its stage up to other genres, such as jazz, rock, world music and local or regional singer-songwriters.
vicolo San Francesco a Ripa 18, Rome, Italy, +39 06 581 2551
This is one of the best-known discos in Rome. It generally hosts reggae, techno and dub music, with many bands of international calibre on stage delivering live performances. The decor is modern and somewhat psychedelic; perfect matching for the techno beats and dub night ethos. On reggae nights, laid-back vibes creep in and everyone gets chatty.
Sinister Noise Club
Tight-knit, intimate and set to the (un)familiar underground aromas of sweaty hipsters and cigarette smoke, this uber-cool joint is on the Via dei Magazzini Generali on the eastern edge of the River Tiber. It touts some of the hottest local indie, rock and alternative bands in the city. Of course, this all comes washed down with potent mixers and local Lazio craft beers.
Via dei Magazzini Generali, 4, Roma, Italy, +39 347 331 0648
This pub is situated in north-east Rome and promises to be the perfect location for a wonderful evening with friends. With 60s and 80s live music delighting the table, Il Cantine will prove to be worth the time. The menu caters to different palates, and patrons have a wide range of food to choose from. Craft beers are the name of the game – and there really are plenty to get through.
via della Batteria Nomentana 66, Rome, Italy, +39 366 121 7547
Black Out Rock Club
This large music club hosts some of Rome’s best events. It is only open for scheduled concerts and private parties, which spread out over Black Out Rock Club‘s two huge rooms, its outdoor garden and four separate bars. The events organized here generally offer good rock as well as tribute bands of the same genre. There are also regular heavy metal nights to let loose at.
via Casilina 713, Rome, Italy, +39 06 241 5047