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Kick off the new year with some good music, cold drinks, and solid eats.
Dan Electros

15 Houston Restaurants and Bars With Live Entertainment

From showcasing solo pianists to big band live music acts, a meal at these restaurants is never boring

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Kick off the new year with some good music, cold drinks, and solid eats.
| Dan Electros

Whether considering where to celebrate a milestone date night or a birthday dinner with 12 of your closest friends, there are lots of special occasion restaurants in Houston to pick from. For those, looking for something that strays from the norm, the city boasts a number of places that combine dinner and drinks with a riveting show or live music act for a more sensory experience.

While Houston has long been home to restaurants with live music stages where you can kick back with a beer and a burger while singing along to local bands, a crop of new vibe dining restaurants have raised the bar when it comes to dinner and a show, making the city even richer with options.

Jam out at weekend brunch, prove your hips don’t lie while belly-dancing, or simply enjoy a romantic dinner as nostalgic tunes and notes from a baby grand piano fill the room. Here are 15 Houston restaurants serving up live entertainment.

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Every Thursday night, Hamsa reels in the dinner crowds for its lively Tel Aviv night, which features a belly-dancing show that begins at 9:30 p.m. Performers don traditional garb customized with whimsical wings, capes, and scarves illuminated with LED lights, and dazzle guests as they make their way around the dining room. A live DJ provides the beats, and complimentary arak shots flow like water.

RockHouse Southern Kitchen

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The former Billy Blues location has been transformed into Rockhouse, a celebratory fusion of Southern culture and cuisine that offers a major dose of live entertainment. While you wait for a performance on the outdoor stage, unwind on the patio with a cocktail and dishes like oxtail egg rolls, Creole pizza, or fried chicken and catfish with smoked collard greens and mac and cheese. Be sure to check its calendar of events online, which includes a list of concerts and themed nights, like Oxtail Mondays, when happy hour runs from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. and plates of tender and saucy oxtails are $20.

A person pulls apart a piece of fried chicken at RockHouse Southern Kitchen.
Rockhouse fuses Southern cuisine and culture with live music.
Raydon Creative

McGonigel's Mucky Duck

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This iconic Upper Kirby restaurant and bar has been devoted to supporting local live music acts since the ‘90s. McGonigel’s showcases eight shows per week, including some that require no cover charge, and as a bonus, makes them available to stream online. The intimate space peppered with tables lets guests get an up close look at their favorite artists while drinking and noshing on pub-style eats like Shepherd’s pie, fish and chips, and beef Guinness.

One of the year’s hot new openings, Se7en offers a majestic setting in which to dine, as entertainers dressed in glitzy costumes and headdresses, singers, and instrumentalists, take to the stage as guests eat. The menu boasts dishes with Asian and Mediterranean flare, like char-grilled octopus, prime beef kebabs, and bluefin tuna sashimi, and a live DJ keeps the energy up late into the night.

A DJ mixing music.
A live DJ performs nightly at Se7en.
Leah Wilson

CAPS Supper Club & Bar

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The renovated Caps Piano Bar makes a comeback under a new swag and an updated menu, featuring whiskey and wine flights, cocktails, and dishes like tender braised short ribs, grilled seabass, and a filling campanelle bolognese. Best of all, the original performers from the Tighten Up band have also returned and will perform centerstage with jazzy live music for diners.

Loch Bar

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This buzzy River Oaks District seafood restaurant keeps the party going into the wee hours, with live music offered nightly from 9 p.m. to 1 a.m. Local singers like Gabe Montoya, the Madi Duo, and Blake Jackson Music entertain, as guests huddle over beer, wine, cocktails, and seafood plates like the signature Maryland crab cakes and fried lobster tails.

This Italian chophouse, newly opened in the Montrose Collective, is known for its hand-rolled pastas, premium steaks from local, domestic, and international purveyors, and live music. Every day, singers set up shop at the baby grand piano in the restaurant’s bar, and perform nostalgic favorites during happy hour and throughout the evening.

Scarpinocc, squid ink campanelle, and rigatoni alla vodka pastas.
The scarpinocc, squid ink campanelle, and rigatoni alla vodka pastas.
Kirsten Gilliam

Ciel Restaurant & Lounge

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Ciel has raised the bar for vibe dining in Houston with its one-of-a-kind experience, which includes sporadic live performances throughout the night. There isn’t a bad seat in the house, as singers, dancers, and the staff itself, weave in and around tables and take to the stage, creating a high-energy atmosphere for guests. Peruse the sushi menu before trying the Australian wagyu ribeye, and if you really want to live lavishly, splurge on bottle service.

Turner's

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Since it opened, an attractive aspect of dining at Turner’s has been the restaurant’s live pianist who performs nightly. More recently, it has added a new Big Easy-themed jazz lunch, available every Thursday and Friday afternoon, giving diners reason to get a head start on the weekend. Along with musical talent who create a festive atmosphere in the dining room from 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 pm, a menu with Cajun flair by chef Ricardo Cerna is offered, with standouts like seafood gumbo, boudin balls, and whole Branzino.

Whole branzino with the head on.
Whole branzino at Turner’s Big Easy jazz lunch.
Kirsten Gilliam

Emilia’s Havana

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This speakeasy-style bar, hidden inside the kitchen at the Annie Cafe & Bar, offers two seatings a night during which guests can enjoy live Cuban music from the cover band and a menu of tapas and cocktails. Try the king crab croquetas with an Old Cuban cocktail, crafted with rum and champagne, and get your fill of rum from the bar’s working rum fountain.

The interior of Emilia’s Havana with banquettes, a fountain, a live music stage, and a neon sign that reads “Emilia’s”.
Emilia’s Havana is a live music venue, hidden inside the Annie Cafe & Bar.
Jenn Duncan

Lightnin's Good Times

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Housed in the old digs of the now-shuttered Miss Carousel, this new East Downtown bar offers its menu of cold beer, “damn fine cocktails” like its caramelized pineapple mule, and its signature green tea and Mexican candy shots — all of which can be enjoyed to its soundtrack of live music and DJ sets. Lightnin’s offers slices of Vinny’s pizza for bargoers who work up an appetite.

The red-lit bar area at Lightnin’s Good Times, which features a neon man in a headdress and stage for live music.
The red-lit bar Lightnin’s Good Times is the perfect place to enjoy some live music.
Mikah Danae

The Rustic

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This restaurant and live music venue that hails from Dallas has two locations in Houston, in downtown and in Uptown Park. Visitors are welcome to enjoy free live music on most evenings and during weekend brunch from an ever-changing roster of local and national talent. Along with a comprehensive food menu featuring soups and salads, steaks, sandwiches, seafood plates and more, find 40 beers on tap and specialty cocktails like espresso martinis and mojitos.

Rainbow Lodge

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The scenic beauty and rustic charm of this restaurant, which is housed in a century-old log cabin along the banks of White Oak Bayou, are reason enough to visit. But, visit on a Friday evening, and enjoy live music with the views. Every week, from 6 to 9 p.m., Rainbow Lodge features music from live performers in the Tied Fly Bar, or on the picturesque patio when the weather permits.

Dan Electro's

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The recently renovated live music venue Dan Electro’s rocks out several nights of the week, with live bands and multiple spaces, including a 5,000-square-foot fenced-in patio with a projector. January’s calendar of events also brings free pool on Monday nights, Shawn Allen’s Blues Jam and Mixer on Tuesdays from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m., and a host of pop-up food vendors, including a weekly steak night by Willow’s BBQ.

An indoor stage with colorful lights and tables and chairs.
Dan Electro’s is experiencing a renaissance.
Dan Electros

This Waterway Square newbie, known to push the boundaries of traditional Indian cuisine, is a lively destination to eat, drink, and lounge in the Woodlands. Live entertainment is offered every weekend, beginning with a Latin-themed night on Thursdays from 8 p.m. to midnight, and a live band on Friday and Saturday evenings from 9 p.m. to 1 a.m.

Hamsa

Every Thursday night, Hamsa reels in the dinner crowds for its lively Tel Aviv night, which features a belly-dancing show that begins at 9:30 p.m. Performers don traditional garb customized with whimsical wings, capes, and scarves illuminated with LED lights, and dazzle guests as they make their way around the dining room. A live DJ provides the beats, and complimentary arak shots flow like water.

RockHouse Southern Kitchen

The former Billy Blues location has been transformed into Rockhouse, a celebratory fusion of Southern culture and cuisine that offers a major dose of live entertainment. While you wait for a performance on the outdoor stage, unwind on the patio with a cocktail and dishes like oxtail egg rolls, Creole pizza, or fried chicken and catfish with smoked collard greens and mac and cheese. Be sure to check its calendar of events online, which includes a list of concerts and themed nights, like Oxtail Mondays, when happy hour runs from 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. and plates of tender and saucy oxtails are $20.

A person pulls apart a piece of fried chicken at RockHouse Southern Kitchen.
Rockhouse fuses Southern cuisine and culture with live music.
Raydon Creative

McGonigel's Mucky Duck

This iconic Upper Kirby restaurant and bar has been devoted to supporting local live music acts since the ‘90s. McGonigel’s showcases eight shows per week, including some that require no cover charge, and as a bonus, makes them available to stream online. The intimate space peppered with tables lets guests get an up close look at their favorite artists while drinking and noshing on pub-style eats like Shepherd’s pie, fish and chips, and beef Guinness.

Se7en

One of the year’s hot new openings, Se7en offers a majestic setting in which to dine, as entertainers dressed in glitzy costumes and headdresses, singers, and instrumentalists, take to the stage as guests eat. The menu boasts dishes with Asian and Mediterranean flare, like char-grilled octopus, prime beef kebabs, and bluefin tuna sashimi, and a live DJ keeps the energy up late into the night.

A DJ mixing music.
A live DJ performs nightly at Se7en.
Leah Wilson

CAPS Supper Club & Bar

The renovated Caps Piano Bar makes a comeback under a new swag and an updated menu, featuring whiskey and wine flights, cocktails, and dishes like tender braised short ribs, grilled seabass, and a filling campanelle bolognese. Best of all, the original performers from the Tighten Up band have also returned and will perform centerstage with jazzy live music for diners.

Loch Bar

This buzzy River Oaks District seafood restaurant keeps the party going into the wee hours, with live music offered nightly from 9 p.m. to 1 a.m. Local singers like Gabe Montoya, the Madi Duo, and Blake Jackson Music entertain, as guests huddle over beer, wine, cocktails, and seafood plates like the signature Maryland crab cakes and fried lobster tails.

Marmo

This Italian chophouse, newly opened in the Montrose Collective, is known for its hand-rolled pastas, premium steaks from local, domestic, and international purveyors, and live music. Every day, singers set up shop at the baby grand piano in the restaurant’s bar, and perform nostalgic favorites during happy hour and throughout the evening.

Scarpinocc, squid ink campanelle, and rigatoni alla vodka pastas.
The scarpinocc, squid ink campanelle, and rigatoni alla vodka pastas.
Kirsten Gilliam

Ciel Restaurant & Lounge

Ciel has raised the bar for vibe dining in Houston with its one-of-a-kind experience, which includes sporadic live performances throughout the night. There isn’t a bad seat in the house, as singers, dancers, and the staff itself, weave in and around tables and take to the stage, creating a high-energy atmosphere for guests. Peruse the sushi menu before trying the Australian wagyu ribeye, and if you really want to live lavishly, splurge on bottle service.

Turner's

Since it opened, an attractive aspect of dining at Turner’s has been the restaurant’s live pianist who performs nightly. More recently, it has added a new Big Easy-themed jazz lunch, available every Thursday and Friday afternoon, giving diners reason to get a head start on the weekend. Along with musical talent who create a festive atmosphere in the dining room from 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 pm, a menu with Cajun flair by chef Ricardo Cerna is offered, with standouts like seafood gumbo, boudin balls, and whole Branzino.

Whole branzino with the head on.
Whole branzino at Turner’s Big Easy jazz lunch.
Kirsten Gilliam

Emilia’s Havana

This speakeasy-style bar, hidden inside the kitchen at the Annie Cafe & Bar, offers two seatings a night during which guests can enjoy live Cuban music from the cover band and a menu of tapas and cocktails. Try the king crab croquetas with an Old Cuban cocktail, crafted with rum and champagne, and get your fill of rum from the bar’s working rum fountain.

The interior of Emilia’s Havana with banquettes, a fountain, a live music stage, and a neon sign that reads “Emilia’s”.
Emilia’s Havana is a live music venue, hidden inside the Annie Cafe & Bar.
Jenn Duncan

Lightnin's Good Times

Housed in the old digs of the now-shuttered Miss Carousel, this new East Downtown bar offers its menu of cold beer, “damn fine cocktails” like its caramelized pineapple mule, and its signature green tea and Mexican candy shots — all of which can be enjoyed to its soundtrack of live music and DJ sets. Lightnin’s offers slices of Vinny’s pizza for bargoers who work up an appetite.

The red-lit bar area at Lightnin’s Good Times, which features a neon man in a headdress and stage for live music.
The red-lit bar Lightnin’s Good Times is the perfect place to enjoy some live music.
Mikah Danae

The Rustic

This restaurant and live music venue that hails from Dallas has two locations in Houston, in downtown and in Uptown Park. Visitors are welcome to enjoy free live music on most evenings and during weekend brunch from an ever-changing roster of local and national talent. Along with a comprehensive food menu featuring soups and salads, steaks, sandwiches, seafood plates and more, find 40 beers on tap and specialty cocktails like espresso martinis and mojitos.

Rainbow Lodge

The scenic beauty and rustic charm of this restaurant, which is housed in a century-old log cabin along the banks of White Oak Bayou, are reason enough to visit. But, visit on a Friday evening, and enjoy live music with the views. Every week, from 6 to 9 p.m., Rainbow Lodge features music from live performers in the Tied Fly Bar, or on the picturesque patio when the weather permits.

Dan Electro's

The recently renovated live music venue Dan Electro’s rocks out several nights of the week, with live bands and multiple spaces, including a 5,000-square-foot fenced-in patio with a projector. January’s calendar of events also brings free pool on Monday nights, Shawn Allen’s Blues Jam and Mixer on Tuesdays from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m., and a host of pop-up food vendors, including a weekly steak night by Willow’s BBQ.

An indoor stage with colorful lights and tables and chairs.
Dan Electro’s is experiencing a renaissance.
Dan Electros

Amrina

This Waterway Square newbie, known to push the boundaries of traditional Indian cuisine, is a lively destination to eat, drink, and lounge in the Woodlands. Live entertainment is offered every weekend, beginning with a Latin-themed night on Thursdays from 8 p.m. to midnight, and a live band on Friday and Saturday evenings from 9 p.m. to 1 a.m.

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