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Live Sounds

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For an area so Borrowers in size, it's amazing how big the Santa Cruz live music scene can be. There are plenty of spots where DJs and live acts can do their stuff, whether it's spinning dance tunes or rocking folks into a sweaty stupor.


Aptos Club--Live bands on Thu.-Sat. nights, heavy on punk, pop-punk and industrial bands. Full bar. No cover.
7941 Soquel Dr, Aptos (831/688-9888)

Bittersweet Bistro--Piano jazz complements meals on Friday evenings. Full bar. No cover.
783 Rio Del Mar Blvd., Rio Del Mar (831/662-9799)

Blue Lagoon--One of the only places to dance in Santa Cruz, the Lagoon plays host to DJs spinning house, disco and '80s classics. Full bar. Cover varies.
923 Pacific Ave, Santa Cruz (831/423-7117)

Britannia Arms--Live music weekends, usually rock and blues. Full bar. No cover.
8017 Soquel Dr., Aptos (831/688-1233)

Brookdale Lodge--Live music Wed.-Sat. nights. Features national acts as well as locals, heavy on psychedelic rock and acid jazz bands. Full bar. Cover varies.
11570 Hwy. 9, Brookdale (831/338-7633)

Café Rio--Soul, R&B and jazz acts provide musical accompaniment for restaurant and bar patrons on weekend nights. Full bar. No cover.
131 Esplanade, Rio Del Mar (831/688-8917)

Callahan's Pub--Live rock & roll, blues and R&B Thu.-Sat. nights. Full bar. Cover varies.
507 Water St., Santa Cruz (831/427-3119)

The Catalyst--A favorite for music fans, Santa Cruz's live music staple features some of the biggest in national acts, smaller bands and local musicians. Full bar and food service. Cover varies.
1133 Pacific Ave., Santa Cruz (831/423-1336)

Club Dakota--The newest bar on the Santa Cruz block features DJ dancing nightly, showcasing all styles from house to disco to R&B. Full bar. No cover.
1209 Pacific Ave., Santa Cruz (831/454-9030)

Cocoanut Grove--The beautiful '40s-style ballroom plays host to touring acts, as well as monthly dance nights for those 16 and over. Full bar. Cover varies.
400 Beach St., at the Boardwalk, Santa Cruz (831/423-2053)

Costa Brava--Upscale bar and restaurant plays host to local R&B, jazz and world-beat bands on weekend nights. Full bar. No cover.
1222 Pacific Ave., Santa Cruz (831/425-7871)

Crepe Place--Live music Tue.-Fri. evenings--acts vary weekly but usually stick to the jazz and pop vein. Full bar. No cover.
1134 Soquel Ave., Santa Cruz (831/429-6994)

Crow's Nest--Live music at least four nights a week, running the gamut from rock & roll and funk to world beat and salsa. Full bar. Cover varies.
2218 E. Cliff Dr., at the SC Yacht Harbor, Santa Cruz (831/476-4560)

Don Quixote--Full bar. Cover varies. Live rock & roll Fri.-Sat., country & western on Sundays.
6275 Hwy. 9, Felton (831/335-2800)

Fogbank--Live rock & roll and blues on weekend nights. Full bar. No cover.
211 Esplanade Ave., Capitola (831/462-1881)

Front St. Pub--Live music from locals on Thursday nights. Beer & wine. No cover.
516 Front St., Santa Cruz (831/429-8838)

Harbor Cafe--Live folk on Friday evenings; bluegrass on Saturdays. No cover.
535 Seventh Ave., Santa Cruz (831/475-4948)

Henfling's--Music nightly, from local rock and blues musicians to nationally touring Celtic, folk and classic rockers. Full bar. Cover varies.
9450 Highway 9, Ben Lomond (831/336-8811)

Ideal Bar and Grill--Smooth jazz, rock and pop seven nights a week. Full bar. No cover.
106 Beach St., Santa Cruz (831/423-5271)

Kuumbwa--This intimate venue attracts the best in national jazz acts (big-name acts every Monday), as well as local and out-of-town Celtic, folk and world-beat. Beer and wine. No smoking. Cover varies.
320-2 Cedar St., Santa Cruz (831/427-2227)

Mediterranean--Neighborhood haunt features local rock & roll bands Saturday nights. No cover. Full bar.
265 Center St., Aptos (831/688-7004)

Mobo Sushi--Local jazz, vocal, Klezmer and ethnic-music bands on Thu.-Sat. nights. Full bar. No cover.
105 S. River St., Santa Cruz (831/425-1700)

Moe's Alley--The premier spot in Santa Cruz to see national and local blues musicians. Full bar. Cover varies.
1535 Commercial Way, Santa Cruz (831/479-0600)

Palookaville--Club plays host to local underground bands, renowned hip-hop, soul and funk acts, and established pop/rock groups. Beer and wine. Cover varies.
1133 Pacific Ave., Santa Cruz (831/454-0600)

Paradise Beach Grille--Live jazz and tropical musical stylings Thu.-Fri. and Sun. nights. Full bar. No cover.
215 Esplanade, Capitola (831/476-4900)

Positively Front Street--Thu.-Sun. till midnight.
44 Front St., Santa Cruz (831/426-1944)

Red Room--Periodically, edgy music groups perform. Full bar. No cover.
Santa Cruz Hotel, 1003 Cedar St., Santa Cruz (831/426-2994)

Rosie McCann's--Live music Fri.-Saturday nights, highlighting funk, soul and acid jazz. Full bar. Cover varies.
1220 Pacific Ave., Santa Cruz (831/426-9930)

Seabright Brewery--Live music Friday evenings with bands that play everything from soul to Zydeco. Beer and wine. No cover.
519 Seabright Ave., Santa Cruz (831/426-2739)

Severino's--Live jazz and pop standards on the weekends. Full bar. No cover.
7500 Old Dominion Ct., Aptos (831/688-8987)

Skinny McDoogle's--Full bar. No cover.
3910 Portola Dr., Live Oak (831/476-4442)

White Magnolia--The Bayview Hotel's restaurant hosts light jazz Fri.-Sun. afternoons. Full bar. No cover.
8041 Soquel Dr., Aptos (831/662-1890)

Windjammer--Live rock & roll acts on weekends. Full bar. No cover.
1 Rancho Del Mar Shopping Center Aptos (831/688-4433)

Zelda's--Rockers, popsters and crooners take the stage nightly. Full bar. No cover.
203 Esplanade, Capitola (831/475-4900)

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From the September 24-30, 1998 issue of Metro Santa Cruz.

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