Five Places to Play Your Band's First Gig In Metro Phoenix

Treasure MammaL played the Trunk Space earlier this year.
Treasure MammaL played the Trunk Space earlier this year.
Melissa Fossum

So you've written some songs. Recruited your best friend to play bass. Taught your neighbor the drums. Rehearsed a little. Played some house parties. Now you're ready to take the next step and play an actual venue. But where do you go?

First gigs are like losing your virginity. You eagerly anticipate your first time, only to walk away afterward with a heart full of disappointment. Gigs get better the more you do them, but not after you grit your teeth and bare through the first one.

Everyone has a first time. Check out these venues in Metro Phoenix if you're looking for yours.

Firehouse Gallery

The Firehouse Gallery
The Firehouse Gallery

The Firehouse Gallery is bar-none the absolute best place for a band to play their first show. It is conveniently located right off of the light rail in downtown Phoenix (1015 N. 1st St.), so you don't have to ask your friends to walk or drive too far, and pedestrians often wander in wondering what's up. The stage, lighting, and sound are head and shoulders above anything one might find at a house show. But possibly most important of all, it's an art space and not a bar or club, which means no age restrictions, and the owner's number-one goal is not to make money. Now don't get me wrong, they need to pay the rent and keep the lights on like everyone else, but the pressure to have a big draw just doesn't exist in the same way that it does in a bar looking to make money from selling drinks. People do live in the Firehouse, and very often evidence of that fact can be found scattered around the grounds. But the volunteers who run lighting and sound are very knowledgeable and professional, so what you end up with is the best of both worlds. The casual attitude and environment of a house show mixed with the stage, lighting and sound setup of a club. -- Jeff Moses


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