Seeing your favorite band at Spectrum Center or Bojangles Coliseum is wonderful. But there’s something extra special about intimate concerts that big spectacles can’t reproduce.
Sofar Sounds, a music events company founded in London in 2009, organizes small-venue concerts with lesser-known artists in cities around the world. Most are local, but Sofar Sounds spokesperson Kalyn Dobbs says the company “love(s) supporting touring artists who are trying to grow their audiences in new places.” Sofar organizes shows in backyards, museums, rooftops, cafés, bakeries, breweries, boutiques, and tattoo shops, and sells only 50 to 150 tickets per show. The coolest part: You don’t know the venue until you get an email 36 hours in advance, and you don’t know who’ll play until showtime.
Sofar, which brought its concerts to Charlotte in 2017, holds five or six concerts a month in the Queen City. While January’s Charlotte shows hadn’t been announced as of press time in November—adds to the whole air of mystery, no?—you can find them at sofarsounds.com/cities/charlotte.
Ticket cost: $19
Number of performing artists per show: 3
Show duration: Up to 3 hours
Charlotte venues so far: 80+
Charlotte artists who’ve performed: TuKool Tiff, Bianca Jade, Cosmic Collective, Kia Flow, and more
Famous artists who played Sofar Sounds concerts before they made it big: Billie Eilish, Leon Bridges, Andra Day, X Ambassadors, Wolf Alice, Anderson East, Sylvan Esso, Tank and the Bangas, and more
To BYO or not to BYO: Some Sofar concert venues sell alcohol and food, while others permit you to bring your own. Check the website when you book.
Not really the spontaneous type?
Now for the non-Sofar concerts, which announce venue and artist in advance. Squares.
Friday, Jan. 6, 7 p.m. Coyote Joe’s. Tickets start at $20, baileyzimmermanmusic.com
The Terence Young Jazz Experience
Friday, Jan. 6, 7 & 9:15 p.m. Middle C Jazz. Tickets start at $32, middlecjazz.com
Saturday, Jan. 7, 7 & 9:15 p.m. Middle C Jazz. Tickets start at $32, middlecjazz.com
Jan. 13-14. Middle C Jazz. Tickets start at $40, middlecjazz.com
Friday, Jan. 20, 7 p.m. Amos’ Southend. Tickets: $25, badfish.com
Gregory Alan Isakov
Saturday, Jan. 21, 8 p.m. The Fillmore. Tickets start at $30, gregoryalanisakov.com
Wednesday, Jan 25, 8 p.m. The Underground. Tickets: $25, livenation.com
We Came As Romans
Thursday, Jan. 26, 7 p.m. The Underground. Tickets start at $27.50, iamdarkbloom.com
Thursday, Jan. 26, 9 p.m. Blackbox Theater. Tickets start at $47, ifg.site
Jan. 27-28. Middle C Jazz. Tickets start at $56, middlecjazz.com
The Breakfast Club
Saturday, Jan. 28, 8:30 p.m. Amos’ Southend. Tickets start at $13, amossouthend.com
Death Cab For Cutie
Sunday, Jan. 29, 8 p.m. Ovens Auditorium. Tickets start at $45, deathcabforcutie.com