The Appalachian Highlands is well-known for having deep musical traditions. And in Kingsport, one of the three cities that makes up the urban center of this fantastic area, music is an important part of that heritage.
Kingsport is a place where bluegrass, rock, mountain, indie, country and other musical traditions thrive. Residents of Kingsport, on any given night, can experience any of these musical styles and more.
We wish we could list all the places in town to experience live music, but since we can’t, we’ll get the party started with seven great places for live music in Kingsport.
1. The Woodstone Deli, 3500 Fort Henry Dr, 37664, (423) 245-9663
Besides serving American cuisine, deli sandwiches and burgers, The Woodstone Deli and Sports Bar features classic live classic and Southern rock, and bluegrass. Every other Thursday you can catch the soulful southern rock of duo Rusty Steel and Jason Lloyd. Alternate weeks, you’ll hear local favorite Willy play 80s rock on his electric guitar. Every Wednesday is open mic night where bands and solo acts who’d like to play or sing before a friendly audience can perform. All styles of music are welcome. Make sure you check in with Michael at the front door to participate. Visit Woodstone Deli’s Facebook page for more information.
2. Gypsy Circus Cider Company, 2645 Fort Henry Dr, 37664
If you’re a bluegrass, blues, country or indie rock fan, you’ll want to head out to the Gypsy Circus Cider Company. Acts performing live in September include The Billy Crawford Band, Jackdaws 7, Morgans Mill, and Beth Bombara.
The Gypsy Circus Cider Company serves hard cider made from local, organic, fresh-pressed apples. This award-winning cidery was the first craft cidery and the first cider bar in the state. Lots of firsts for these folks! Their Insider Taproom features craft cider, mead, cyser (apple cider mead) and beer so there is a lot to choose from to whet your whistle. An art wall in the Taproom features local artists — and you can play retro video games and board games when you visit.
This venue has lots of interesting event nights like Football Trivia, Teacher Wednesdays ($1 off cider pints for people working in education), Pride nights, and others. For information about events and bands playing at Gypsy Circus, check out their website event page or their Facebook page.
3. Model City Tap House, 151 E. Main St, Ste 1, 37660, (423) 765-0875
Located in downtown Kingsport’s historic train station, Model City Tap House serves craft beer and steamed deli sandwiches. Every other Thursday (and on some Saturdays), you can find a variety of live music – everything from oldies to Southern rock. The Model City Tap House also hosts jam sessions where the musicians improvise that night’s set. On the first and third week of the month, their house band, Donnie and the Dry Heavers, plays classic rock and original rock tunes. Follow the Model City Tap House on Facebook or Instagram for more information.
4. Macado’s Restaurant, 210 Broad St, 37660, (423) 390-1408
If you want to hear live music and, you like variety, head out to Macado’s Restaurant in downtown Kingsport. Macado’s offers live music every Friday night from 9 p.m. to 12 a.m. The live acts are as varied as the restaurant’s menu. Macado’s serves everything from Mexican dishes to deli sandwiches to classic and gourmet burgers. Likewise, the acts that perform on Fridays might be playing classic rock, blues, country or something in between. One thing is for certain: There will be great food and great music. Visit Macado’s Facebook page for the scheduled artist.
5. High Voltage, 101 Cherokee St, Ste 300, 37660, (423)288-1616
Located at the corner of Main Street and Cherokee in downtown Kingsport, High Voltage is an outdoor venue that offers seasonal rental from April to November for special events. From Thursday through Saturday every week it’s open to the public. It’s on these days that you can catch live acts (weather permitting). The music acts are varied – from new age rock to blues rock – so check their Facebook page for information. Some of the bands performing in September are Broken Daze (new age rock), Well Dogs (classic rock), and Donnie and the Dry Heavers (alt rock/blues rock). You can also catch Flatline, an alt-rock band composed of five doctors and an accountant. High Voltage offers craft and domestic beers and hors d’oeuvres and has various food trucks onsite.
6. Evenings at the Market
On the second Thursday of each month, from June through September, the Kingsport Farmers Market features live music. In September, the ETSU Bluegrass Pride Band is playing. The Kingsport Farmers Market is located at 300 Clinchfield St. For more information check out The Kingsport Farmers Market web page.
7. Sip and Stroll
If you like to walk, you’ll love this! On the first Thursday of every month, Downtown Kingsport hosts the Sip and Stroll. Enjoy a leisurely evening walk through downtown, plenty of refreshments and live music from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m. Shops stay open late for this event so there’s plenty to explore. Strollers meet at 5 p.m. at 200 Broad Street.
There you have it. Seven of our top picks for live music in Kingsport. Whatever your taste in music, we’re sure you’ll find a venue offering it in our city. We’d love to hear what your top picks are so we can feature them in a later blog post.
Until then, rock on!