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If you are in the mood for something local and authentic to do in Memphis, go to one of the local cafes or blues bars on Beale Street. Favorites include Rum Boogie Cafe, B.B., King's Blues Club and Blues City Cafe. Depending on time of year and the day of the week, you may find a live band playing in most every bar along Beale St. Some nights bands even set up on the sidewalks, and on alley patios between storefronts; there are occasional concerts in the large amphitheater in Handy Park. The street usually gets busier as the week progresses, reaching its peak on Saturday night. Any time of the year is a great time to come, but the music is especially good during events such as the Blue Foundation's International Blues Challenge (January) and Blues Music Awards (May).
Memphis also has one of the best varieties of music venues- you can check out shows playing at the New Daisy on Beale Street or Minglewood Hall in Midtown Memphis (just east of downtown). Many popular acts play at these venues, so you might find someone you like. As an alternative, check out some of the local venues like the P&H Cafe, Young Avenue Deli or the Hi-Tone Cafe to find local bands and traveling acts alike.
Of course Wild Bill's Blues Club, Raidford's, Ernestine & Hazel's, and the Hollywood Disco are category defying, hole-in-the-wall, must-see venues as well. Be advised that many of these establishments are cash only.
Memphis is definitely a music city, covering every genre and acing them.