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Teatro Colon | © Hernán Piñera/Flickr
Teatro Colon | © Hernán Piñera/Flickr
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A Music Lover's Guide to Buenos Aires, Argentina

Picture of Harry Stewart
Updated: 19 September 2018
With its eclectic mix of European and Latin influences, Buenos Aires is a city that lives and breathes music. No matter the day of the week or the desired genre, there is a venue out there somewhere putting on a killer live show. From clubs to concert halls, record stores and festivals, read our guide to discover everything you need be known about Buenos Aires’ awesome music scene.

Venues

Buenos Aires has a number of clubs and concert halls to cater to every taste. Gigs vary depending on the night of the week, so check out our recommendations’ websites to see what’s on before heading out for an unforgettable night.

Tango

There are countless tango shows throughout the city, which means choosing just one can be a little daunting. To quickly summarize the best: Tango Porteño puts on a fun, upbeat show featuring a great orchestra, Rojo Tango Show offers a pricey but timeless Parisian experience, whereas La Ventana is famous for its authentic Argentine folklore inspired performances.

Tango Porteño, Cerrito 570, Buenos Aires, Argentina, +54 11 4124-9400

Rojo Tango Show, Martha Salotti 445, Buenos Aires, Argentina, +54 11 4952-4111

La Ventana Barrio de Tango, Buenos Aires, Argentina, +54 11 4334-1314

Those looking to get in on the action should check out one of the city’s lively milongas (tango dance clubs). Maldita is renowned for its excellent live orchestra and is a great option for beginners and pros alike, while La Catedral’s informal atmosphere and dress code make it very accommodating for the uninitiated. Most clubs offer lessons before their events which should definitely be considered before hitting the dance floor.

Maldita, Perú 571, Buenos Aires, Argentina, +54 11 2189-7747

La Catedral, Sarmiento 4006, C1414 CABA, Argentina, +54 11 5325-1630

Folkloricó

Folklorico in Argentina is kind of like country music, only better. Think gauchos strumming away on charangos while belting out epic love ballads to an enthralled audience. La Peña del Colorado is one of the city’s best, with excellent northern Argentine food and music, regular live shows and post-performance impromptu jam sessions from the general public.

La Peña Del Colorado, Güemes 3657, C1425 CABA, Argentina, +54 11 4822-1038

Classical

Buenos Aires is a sophisticated city with a thriving classical music scene, featuring a number of elegant concert halls which host some of the world’s best orchestras. Of particular note is Teatro Colón, a stunning theater and local landmark with some of the best acoustics in the world, although there are plenty of others to choose from.

Teatro Colon, Cerrito 628, Buenos Aires, Argentina, +54 11 4378-7100

Electronic Dance Music

Buenos Aires is the birthplace of many of the continent’s finest DJs, so its no surprise the city has loads of awesome electro clubs to offer. Palmero institution, Niceto Club, puts on an epic techno night every Thursday called Club 69 which features show ‘girls’, awesome light shows and some bizarre performance art. Terrazas del Este is the city’s most famous super club, boasting four dance floors, 10 bars and space for 3,000 people. Finally, Crobar and Pacha are big name clubs which are definitely worth a look, but there are plenty more to choose from.

Niceto Club, Av Cnel. Niceto Vega, Buenos Aires, Argentina, +54 11 4779-9396

Terrazas Del Este, Av. Costanera Norte Rafael Obligado 2221, Buenos Aires, Argentina, +54 11 5848-8668

Crobar, Av. Cnel. Marcelino E. Freyre, Cdad. Autónoma de Buenos Aires, Argentina, +54 11 4778-1500

Pacha, Avenida Costanera R. Obligado, Buenos Aires, Argentina, +54 11 4788-4288

Percussion

Not really a genre worth mentioning if it weren’t for the amazing La Bomba del Tiempo who put on a spectacular drumming show at the Ciudad Cultural Konex every Monday night. One of the most captivating regular live shows in the city, it’s all too easy to get carried away with their infectious rhythm.

Ciudad Cultural Konex, Sarmiento 3131, Buenos Aires, Argentina, +54 11 4864-3200

Rock

As one of the biggest rock cities in South America, there are plenty of pumping venues to see a rock show in Buenos Aires. Trastienda has been putting on live shows for over two decades with genres ranging from indy to SKA, Salon Pueyrredón is the city’s best punk venue and sells cheap, strong booze to get the crowd in the mood, while those into heavy metal should check out this site to see what’s happening.

Trastienda, Balcarce 460, Buenos Aires, Argentina, +54 11 4342-5162

Salón Pueyrredón, Avenida Santa Fe, Buenos Aires, Buenos Aires, Argentina, +54 9 11 6174-2963

Jazz

A sizable jazz scene has evolved in the city over the years, becoming exponentially larger since the early 2000s. Thelonious is the city’s most famous jazz club, with a small and intimate space that is the epitome of cool. Notorious is another well known spot, a bit more upmarket but worth the extra pesos.

Thelonious Club, Jerónimo Salguero, Buenos Aires, Argentina, +54 11 4829-1562

Notorious, Av. Callao 966, 1023 Buenos Aires, Argentina, +54 11 4813-6888

Thelonious | © Thelonious
Thelonious | © Thelonious

Big Concerts

With a relatively strong economy and a huge number of extremely enthusiastic music lovers, no big band would dream of touring South America without stopping in Buenos Aires. Famous international artists perform at the high capacity venues of Luna Park, El Monumental or Teatro Gran Rex to insanely large crowds. Tickets are pretty much always sold online, so check out ticketek to see what’s on.

Luna Park, Madero, Buenos Aires, Argentina, +54 11 5279-5279

El Monumental, Av. Pres. Figueroa Alcorta 7597, 1424 Buenos Aires, Argentina, +54 11 4789-1200

Teatro Gan Rex, Av. Corrientes 857, C1049AAQ CABA, Argentina, +54 11 4322-8000

Record Stores

MP3s and Spotify have made life tough for the local record store, but there are a few places in Buenos Aires that have managed to keep afloat against the odds. One of the best is Eureka Records in San Telmo which is the biggest in the city, boasting a huge variety of vinyls and CDs as well as plenty of collectible magazines, tees and posters.

Eureka Records, Defensa, Buenos Aires, Ciudad Autónoma de Buenos Aires, Argentina, +54 11 4307-9035

Eureka Records | © Heidi De Vries/Flickr
Eureka Records | © Heidi De Vries/Flickr

Music Festivals

Argentines love a good music festival, so much so that many international artists have praised them as being the most enthusiastic audiences in the world.

Lollapalooza

Starting out in the United States before making its way to South America and around the world, Lollapalooza is the continent’s biggest and most sought after festival. Usually held in March at the Hipódromo de San Isidro, it showcases a little bit of everything including indie, rock, punk and electro.

Hipódromo de San Isidro, Av. Márquez 504, 1642 San Isidro, Buenos Aires, Argentina, +54 11 4743-4011

Lollapolooza 2015 | © leonardo samrani/Flickr
Lollapolooza 2015 | © leonardo samrani/Flickr

Creamfields

Originating in the UK, this massive electronic music festival first came to Buenos Aires back in 2001. The annual one day event never fails to attract big-name international and Argentine DJs.

Ultra

The other enormous annual electronic music festival, Ultra has found a huge following since landing in Argentina in 2012. The two day show is usually held in February and pulls in an equal if not better lineup than Creamfields.

Buenos Aires Tango Festival

An estimated 400,000 people attend this 18 day annual festival which is billed as being the biggest tango event in the world. The festival includes all things tango such as live performances, classes, milongas, speeches, film screenings and competitions.

Buenos Aires Jazz Festival

The five day Buenos Aires Jazz Festival is held in November at various local jazz bars and concert halls throughout the city. The country’s best musicians plus some international superstars get together in what is truly an unmissable event for the jazz aficionado.