Live Music in Oceanside
Smooth jazz, sultry blues, classic rock. You name it and chances are you’ll find performances by talented Oceanside artists at one of the many fantastic venues in town. The following chill spots are a few of many that host free live entertainment on a regular basis. What a relaxing way to spend your afternoon or evening in Oceanside!
Discover the brewery in a spacious warehouse in East Oceanside. Black Plague Brewing draws parallels to the Dark Ages via its irreverent name and ominous plague doctor logo. Backed by professional skateboarders, the cool branding fits with edgy skateboard culture. In the dark yet inviting tasting room, a mural of the motto “Beer Makes Friends” over an image of the grim reaper toasting a plague doctor captures it all. Black Plague is passionate about bringing people together to spread good times with exceptional beer.
Try the flagship 1347 West Coast Style IPA named after the year the plague invaded Europe. The spiky brew boasts 7.1% ABV, citrus flavor, creamy mouthfeel and a lingering dry finish. The milder Tropicus Pale Ale blends grapefruit and blood orange into a beer that’s easy to drink year round. If you prefer light bodied, then opt for the Revival Kölsch style Lager enriched by aromatic honey malts. Hungry? Order amazing eats from rotating food trucks: Fatty Matty’s Mobile Pizza, Full Metal Burgers, Carolina Mike’s BBQ and more.
The large, central music stage accommodates live Indie acts on weekends. The enigmatic Wish and the Well band recently played to a packed house. They mesmerized the crowd with their soulful blend of Americana music. Think a fusion of blues, folk, country and rock with a modern twist. For more amusement, play one of the fun games on hand such as Cornhole, Jenga or Shuffleboard.
Steep yourself in Oceanside history by visiting downtown’s two-story brick Bunker House built by Theodore Bunker in 1886. Apotheque Lifestyle Spa purchased the landmark in 2010 and added a cozy café in the rear of the building serving wine, beer, coffee and tea. Acoustic musicians play on the charming back patio Wednesday, Thursday and Sunday evenings. Catch regular performer Olivia Rhode and her engaging mix of covers including John Legend, Johnny Cash and the Indigo Girls.
Plans are in the works to install an organic herb and vegetable garden. Produce will supply a proposed onsite vegetarian restaurant. Food served will have healing properties like the spa’s therapeutic bath & body products. The bar will carry biodynamic wines from around the world and beer from San Diego’s many craft breweries. Finally, an espresso machine is on the way.
You can’t beat the sensational ocean views from the rooftop lounge at Hello Betty Fish House. Even better, the glittering Pacific and Oceanside Pier provide the perfect backdrop to the ongoing “Tidal Tunes” event. The series showcases melodic artists such as Astra Kelly on Sundays and Tuesdays.
The upstairs bar serves San Diego craft beer, wine and appetizers. Head downstairs to the breezy dining room to enjoy the full Baja-inspired menu. Fresh seafood options include ceviche, oyster shooters and hearty West Coast Seafood Boil. Also consider the signature Smoked Fish Tacos topped with jack cheese, cabbage, pico and chipotle aioli. For an interesting specialty cocktail pick, indulge in a Ring of Fire Margarita made with jalapeño infused vodka.
See More: Weekly Entertainment in Oceanside
Larry’s Beach Club
The sprawling Larry’s Beach Club was originally built as two single-family homes in the forties. Once joined, the neighborhood bar operated as The Pump, then Across the Tracks, then McCabes Beach Club before it was sold around eight years ago and became Larry’s Beach Club. The iconic dive bar is fun and casual with kitschy decor and a laid back coastal vibe. Larry’s draws a colorful eclectic crowd making it an entertaining people watching spot. The onsite restaurant serves crowd pleasers such as jalapeño poppers, chicken wings, burgers and pizzas at inexpensive prices. Open from 10am to 2am, Larry’s also serves breakfast and lunch. Sports are shown on flat screen TV’s throughout the bar.
Live bands perform every Friday and Saturday from around 8:30pm to 1:30am (be sure to call 760-439-6646 for exact times as they can vary). In the back room, Larry’s also runs karaoke with an extensive selection of songs Tuesday’s through Sunday’s. A local favorite, retro surf band Hipper with singer/guitarist Tim Flood, performed recently and played classics such as Knee High and Lunch Break.
The family-friendly Sunset Market runs year round on Thursdays from 5pm-9pm and is located at Pier View Way and South Tremont Streets. The weekly gathering features food vendors, merchandise vendors, live entertainment and more. There is a main music stage featuring live music in addition to multiple smaller performances spread throughout the market.
Music changes week-to-week. There’s a diverse lineup of new and returning bands such as Yael & Vlady, Hoodoo Blues and the Flying Mangoes. The type of music played covers all genres from rock to reggae, and everything inbetween. The outdoor Sunset Market offers fun for the whole family and is an Oceanside attraction not to be missed.
As their about page says, Surfside Tap Room loves beer “and if you do, too, you’ve come to the right place!” Surfside offers a craft beer tap room and bottle shop, stocked with award winning craft beers from local San Diego County and regional breweries. If you’re looking for a high quality selection of locally owned and brewed craft beers, you can’t go wrong with Surfside Tap Room.
In addition to their great selection of high quality brews, Surfside Tap Room hosts numerous popular weekly events in Oceanside, including a trivia night, an open mic night, and of course live music weekly from 6-9pm on Thursdays.
Longtime Oceanside residents David and Emily Rassel opened Pour House in 2014 on South Coast Highway 101. The Pour House is one of Oceanside’s most prolific music venues. The Rassel’s dream was to establish a neighborhood bar that provided terrific food, great drinks and promoted North County music. Now the Pour House runs music just about every night of the week. Tuesday’s music is run by DJ Lexicon Devil, Wednesdays are open mic nights, and Thursdays through Sundays feature live music from multiple bands per night. Regular performers include local bands California Rangers, Gone Blond, Nathan James & The Rhythm Scratchers, and Jimmy Ruelas. Customers are welcome to dance the night away on the floor in front of the music stage! To see who is is playing and when be sure to check the Pour House Event Calendar.
The Pour House also serves tasty modern American fare. The menu features salads, sandwiches and specialties including Truffle Fries, Dirty Chips and Seared Ahi Tuna. There’s a full bar with sixteen local and Belgian beers on tap. The Pour House also features rediscovered classic cocktails such as the Manhattan, Old Fashioned and Pisco Sour. Flat screen TV’s and a pool table provide further entertainment.
This list of venues and times for live music is not exhaustive, live entertainment can be found all across Oceanside on any night of the week! Always be sure to check out the Visit Oceanside Event Calendar for a complete listing of events and venues.
About the Author
Jolee Pink is an Oceanside-based writer, designer and artist. She runs the popular Eat Drink SD Facebook group and her Wabisabi Green lifestyle blog focuses on art, design, food and travel. For more information, please visit wabisabigreen.com.