When I was in school studying music, I went to see a ton of live shows.  When I was in middle school and the first couple of years of high school, the Oregon Liqueur Control Commission had very strict rules about minors being in bars and even some restaurants, so most of the regular venues were unavailable to me.  My parents did a great job of finding other opportunities for me to see music though — we used to go to performances at the Central Library, Borders bookstores, Music Millennium, outdoor concerts during the summers, etc. By high school, the OLCC had relaxed a little and I went to hear music every week. In many ways, it taught me more about playing than any private lessons or classes have.

Now that I’m a teacher myself, I’ve begun to realize how few students get or take the opportunity to hear live music.  It’s such an important part of not only learning to play music, but also of being a part of the arts community in general.

There are quite a few reasons that getting out to see music can be difficult.  Students today are increasingly busy with extra-curricular activities.  It usually costs money to go out and see a show.  And, it can be difficult to know where to go to hear music and if the venue allows minors.  That last point is one that I figured I could try to do something about.

I’ve compiled a list of minor-friendly venues in Portland and a couple sentences explaining what you’re likely to find there.  Hopefully, this list can make it just a little easier for students to go out and find the music that is so important to hear.

Feel free to copy and distribute the list — the more it’s out there, the better.

Download the list in PDF form.

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