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Local Music Venues

Posted by: | June 19, 2009 | 1 Comment |

By Dylan Hares, Broadside Staff Writer

ipod2One of the best parts about being a Mason student, as you’ll quickly learn, is our proximity to Washington, D.C. and other nearby cities that serve as hotbeds for local music.

The best way to kill a lazy Saturday or a Friday night is to head into town and dip your fingers into the local scene—a surefire way to discover bands that you like. Then, of course when they make it big you have the distinct pleasure of saying “I was a fan of them before they were famous.”

For you metal-heads out there, Jaxx Concert Hall and Nightclub is likely going to be your haven and favorite hang-out spot. Featuring hordes of northern Virginia’s local metal bands, you’re always sure to find something to bang your head to at Jaxx, which has hosted acts such as Veruca Salt, Kill Switch Engage and Buckcherry. 

While it looks like a seedy hole-in-the-wall at first glance, Jaxx can be a great place to hang out. Also, if you have your own band, Jaxx routinely has local music nights with slots which always need to be filled. Word of warning—a lot of the bands are hit-or-miss and the staff can be kind of rude.

Jammin’ Java in Vienna is a more laid-back version of Jaxx, catering to acoustic and alternative-loving concert-goers. Jammin’ Java features live music seven nights a week and has welcomed artists such as Citizen Cope, Paramore and Ingrid Michaelson, according to the venue’s website.

Black Cat, located in Washington, D.C. off the U St./Cardozo stop, is a great arena for local and up-and-coming acts. Black Cat features live music almost every night of the week  in two different concert rooms and if you watch the schedule close enough, you might be able to find some larger acts that occasionally grace the Black Cat stages.

In the City of Fairfax, Firehouse Grill is one of the best places to go to catch local music–plus getting there is free if you ride the CUE Bus. The Firehouse Grill also features open mic nights every Thursday at 9:30 p.m.

You don’t have to go off campus to satisfy your craving for local music, however. On Mason’s Fairfax campus is our own Every Freakin’ Friday (EFF) put on by the activity-organizing, student-run body known as Program Board. When is it? You guessed it: every Friday. 

Normally situated in the Johnson Center Atrium, EFF will bring you local music, comedy and other miscellaneous entertainment for your Friday night enjoyment. Plus, they always have free pizza, just be sure to get there early.

under: Entertainment