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Carlitos Gardel Argentine Steakhouse
Photograph: Courtesy Carlitos Gardel Argentine Steakhouse

The best restaurants in L.A. with live music

Dine on a high note with live performances from flamenco guitarists, mariachi bands, jazz trios and more

Written by
Danielle DiMeglio
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L.A.'s clubs and bars don't get to have all the fun. Every night of the week, you can find local bands and musicians providing the musical backdrop for top-notch restaurants around the city, from fine dining establishments to hole-in-the-wall pizza joints. It's just about knowing where to find them—that's where we come in. Whether you're looking for a fun date idea, a place to impress your out-of-town friends or a new weeknight hangout, these restaurants with live music are anything but drab. From flamenco guitarists and mariachi bands to jazz trios and singing waiters, there's plenty of restaurants in L.A. serving up great food with a heaping side of live entertainment. Here's your guide to the best restaurants in the city with live music. 

The 12 best L.A. restaurants with live music

Perch
  • Restaurants
  • French
  • Downtown Historic Core
  • price 3 of 4

This rooftop bistro is one of the prettiest in town with patterned tile floors, potted trees full of twinkly lights and sweeping views of the Downtown skyline. Inside, the eclectic French décor displays a series of tasteful boudoir paintings over the bar and a scattering of plush sofas. Nearly seven days out of the week, a live band takes over the restaurant's open-air patio and seranades diners with jazz-inspired tunes, often followed by a DJ spinning beats into the night. Check out the online calendar to see who's taking the stage. 

El Cid
  • Restaurants
  • Spanish
  • Silver Lake

The glamour of Old Hollywood and Spain combine in L.A.'s historic retaurant-meets-theater, El Cid. Made over into a recreation of a 16th-century Spanish tavern in 1962, El Cid features a vibrant Flamenco dinner theater on Saturday and Sunday nights, alongside Spanish-style fare. Here, you can expect a combination of incredible Flamenco guitar sets, lively dance numbers, savory tapas and damn good sangria. During the week, enjoy everything from local musical acts and performance art to comedy and short film screenings. Head online to reserve a table or check out upcoming events. 

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Vibrato Grill Jazz
  • Restaurants
  • American
  • Bel Air
  • price 3 of 4

What do you get when you let a musician design a jazz club? Impeccable acoustics and a hearty concert calendar, like you'll find at this supper club at the top of Mullholland Drive in Bel Air. Designed by trumpeter Herb Alpert, this classy joint hosts stellar concerts six nights a week, including shows by out-of-towners and local greats alike. The ceilings are high here and the price of dinner is, too. If you're looking for a romantic place with fancy food and thoughtful entertainment, Vibrato is your spot. Reservations are recommended.

  • Restaurants
  • Steakhouse
  • Beverly Hills
  • price 3 of 4

Feeling fancy? Excess is the name of the game here and Mastro's wears it well. Servers wear white dinner jackets as they bring mountainous seafood platters, mammoth steaks and huge slices of cake. The dimly-lit, elegant Beverly Hills location has been packing big spenders for over a decade in its charming, supper club space that spans two floors and an alfresco patio. To top off the swanky setting, a live pianist takes over the keys by the bar each night. You'll be tapping your toes and snapping your fingers to the beat, while sipping on a craft cocktail or wine (pinkies up, of course) and diving your fork into a cut of Mastro's finest.

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  • Restaurants
  • American
  • West Hollywood
  • price 3 of 4

A nod to the Roaring Twenties, West Hollywood's swanky, celebrity-studded restaurant and lounge looks like it fits right into the Great Gatsby era with its cascading chandeliers, plush velvet couches and luxurious Art Deco design. Sure, you'll probably see plenty of celebs here, but you'll be more taken with the live entertainment and surprise acts that take place throughout the week. Catch live jazz on Sunday nights, while indulging in decadent, refined dishes like the filet mignon, lobster or a classic ice cream sundae. 

  • Restaurants
  • Argentinian
  • Melrose

For more than 20 years, this family-run steakhouse has brought the authentic flavors and recipes of Argentina to Los Angeles, using sustainably sourced ingredients and grass-fed beef. The intimate setting juxtaposes fine dining with the comfort of home, thanks to its white linen-dressed tables, vintage photographs on the walls, warm wood detailing, and hearty, feel-good dishes. Pair a fine Argentine wine with bone-in ribeye, chimichurri, and a side of the restaurant's signature papas fritas provenzal, hot french-fried potatoes topped with fresh garlic and parsely. Tip: make a reservation on Friday or Saturday night to hear a live musician play tango music on the keys. 

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  • Restaurants
  • American
  • Brentwood

Nestled in the heart of Brentwood, this trendy Hillstone restaurant serves up Southwest-inspired fare and fancy cocktails in an equally luxurious atmosphere. Take a seat in one of the restaurant's sumptuous leather booths, anchored by a buzzy cocktail bar and open-concept kitchen. Each night, a live jazz ensemble sets the musical backdrop with body-swaying tunes fit for a romantic date night or dinner out with friends. 

La Fonda De Los Camperos
  • Restaurants
  • Mexican
  • Westlake

There's something about live mariachi bands that just make your margaritas taste better. Home to the Grammy Award-winning mariachi band, Los Camperos de Nati Cano, the historic restaurant opened in 1969 as the first mariachi dinner theater restaurant in the world. After closing for nine years in 2007, the beloved venue reopened in 2016. Now, you can catch the lively mariachi show four times a week from Thursday to Sunday, alongside a heaping plate of authentic Mexican cuisine. 

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  • Restaurants
  • Mexican
  • Downtown
  • price 2 of 4

Located along Downtown L.A.'s historic Olvera Street, Casa La Golondrina has been an L.A. staple since the Mexican marketplace first opened in 1930, making it the first-ever Mexican restaurant in all of Los Angeles. With that kind of impressive history, you know it's serving up some of the best authentic grub in town. Head to the always-buzzing restaurant for delicious traditional delicacies, pitchers of margaritas, and live performances from local mariachi bands. If you're looking for the perfect place to take an out-of-towner, this is your new go-to. 

PIPS On La Brea
  • Restaurants
  • American
  • Mid City

A soulful blend of music and food, this jazz club has been serving classic Italian fare and live tunes since it opened in the summer of 2010. Jazz acts like Jeff Robinson and songstress Barbara Morrison set up on the outdoor patio as diners enjoy signature pizza, pasta and salads. Be sure to drop by on "Wine Down Wednesday" for half off on all bottles of wine. Plus, if you're in the mood for a boozy brunch, head to PIPS' Champagne Sunday brunch, featuring saxophone player Cal Bennett.

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The Dresden Restaurant
  • Restaurants
  • Steakhouse
  • Los Feliz
  • price 2 of 4

When you walk into this 1950s-era steakhouse, you'll feel transported back in time: giant white oversized leather booths, a "Continental" menu of steaks, seafood and pasta, and resident lounge lizard duo Marty and Elayne (the pair were featured alongside Vince Vaughan in 1996's Swingers, and have been performing regularly at the restaurant since 1982.) Here, you can expect great service, a hearty prime rib dinner, and live jazz music every night from 9pm to 1:15am in the Dresden Room lounge. If you're feeling brave, you can also drop by on Tuesdays for open mic night hosted by Marty and Elayne.

Miceli's
  • Restaurants
  • Italian
  • Studio City
  • price 2 of 4

Dubbed Hollywood's oldest Italian restaurant, L.A.'s beloved pizza joint makes you feel like you're a part of the Miceli family. Sicilian recipes passed down from generations find a home on the extensive menu, which features all the dishes you'd crave from mom's kitchen like chicken parmesan and spaghetti with meatballs. But more charming than the restaurant's story (which dates all the way back to 1949) and old-school interiors are the singing waiters and waitresses. That's right—as you dive into your meal, the staff will belt out Italian classics and show tunes in pretty epic fashion. It's no wonder the landmark venue has drawn everyone from JFK and the Beatles to Julia Roberts and Jim Carrey. 

Thirsty for a night cap?

  • Bars

Keep the entertainment going with a drink at one of the city's best bars. Whether you want a PBR at an Eastside dive bar, seek an expertly-made old-fashioned at a swanky cocktail bar or crave drinks with a view, we've tippled and quaffed at the city's watering holes to give you the best bars in Los Angeles. Now for the hard part: picking one. Good luck!

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