With the state of the world, we can’t exactly go out and see live music right now. But just because we can’t see our favorite artists in person doesn’t mean that we can’t enjoy their music in a live setting at all.
YouTube is a great place to catch live footage of music acts, even if they haven’t been able to tour recently. Want to know how? Hit up these YouTube channels that we’ve rounded up, all of which have tons of live music available.
KEXP is a radio station in Seattle, but thanks to its YouTube channel, its reach goes far beyond the Pacific Northwest. For years, the station has had bands in its studios to give live performances interspersed by interview segments to help you get to know the van.
Currently, KEXP isn’t having bands in the studio, but that doesn’t mean it isn’t doing live music. Instead, the station broadcasts live streams from artists from their own homes. It gives the performances a more intimate feel, but it’s still nice to be able to watch them in the same place.
WDR Rockpalast is a German-language YouTube channel, but don’t worry about that. This channel is the official channel of the Rockpalast television, so this is where you’ll find the best quality footage of those performances.
Rockpalast kicked off in 1974, so there’s plenty of history to mine for performances. You’ll still see new music added to the channel multiple times per week.
While many of the channels we’re looking at feature a bespoke location, PressureDrop.tv is quite a bit different. Instead, this channel focuses on pop-up live performances anywhere and everywhere, meaning it feels like you’ll never see the same location twice.
This channel focuses mainly on underground music, so don’t count on seeing the biggest names here. That said, you may just end up finding a new favorite artist through the channel. And did we mention that these are 360-degree videos?
4. NPR Music
If you’re familiar with NPR Music, you probably know them as “the Tiny Desk channel.” You’re not wrong. That said, the Tiny Desk series isn’t the only thing you’ll find on the NPR Music channel.
One major spinoff recently is Tiny Desk (Home), which is—as the name implies—an at-home take on the familiar format. The channel also has series like Amplify with Lara Downes and virtual events like Louder Than a Riot.
This is one of those cases where the name tells you exactly what to expect. Well, almost. While the artists on this channel are indeed jamming in a van, the van itself is quite a bit larger than you most expect. That said, it has the exact informal vibe you may be looking for.
In addition to being larger than your average van, this van is also a solar-powered mobile recording studio. The people behind the channel haven’t slowed down either, with plenty of new live music hitting every week.
Need More Music Viewing?
Can’t get enough music? I know how you feel, but hey, we can’t subsist on a steady diet of nothing but live music. Why not through in a few hours with some documentaries to expand your musical knowledge while you’re expanding your musical horizons?
Don’t worry, this doesn’t mean subscribing to yet another streaming service or renting documentaries. There are plenty available to watch for free. If you need a starting place, take a look at our list of music documentaries you can stream absolutely free.