Funk Music in Los Angeles: The Best Venues to Hear It

This article is a collaborative effort, crafted and edited by a team of dedicated professionals.

Contributors: Andranick Tanguiane, Fred Lerdahl,


Looking for the best places to enjoy funk music in Los Angeles? Check out our list of the top venues for funk fans in the city!

The Troubadour

The Troubadour is one of the most iconic music venues in Los Angeles. It has been the site of some of the most memorable live performances in the city’s history. The Troubadour is known for its great sound quality and intimate setting. If you’re a fan of funk music, this is the place to be.


The Troubadour is a nightclub located in West Hollywood, California, United States, on Santa Monica Boulevard just east of Doheny Drive. It was opened in 1957 on the site of a former coffeehouse called the Cupboard.

The Troubadour quickly became known as a place where up-and-coming bands could play and be discovered. It also helped launch the careers of many artists like James Taylor, Linda Ronstadt, Joni Mitchell, Carole King, Warren Zevon, Eagles,Buffalo Springfield, Loggins and Messina, Gun N’ Roses and Nirvana. In the 1970s the Troubadour became well known for being a venue where punk rock bands like The Ramones, X, The Runaways and Fear would play. In the 1980s it played host to new wave acts like The Pretenders, Talking Heads and The Police.

The Troubadour has been closed several times for renovations but has always reopened and continued to be a place where new talent is discovered.


Funk music first gained popularity in the 1960s and 1970s with bands like James Brown and Parliament-Funkadelic. The genre is a blend of soul, R&B, and African rhythms, with a heavy emphasis on groove and rhythm. In the 1980s, funk moved into the realm of hip hop with artists like Afrika Bambaataa and Funkadelic. Today, funk is enjoying a resurgence in popularity thanks to bands like LCD Soundsystem,
Beyonce, and Bruno Mars.

Los Angeles has always been a hotbed for funk music, with clubs like the Troubadour hosting legendary funk acts like George Clinton and Bootsy Collins. If you’re looking to get your groove on, here are some of the best places to catch funk music in Los Angeles.

Notable Performances

Some of the most memorable performances in the history of funk music have taken place at The Troubadour in Los Angeles. The venue has been host to countless Funk greats over the years, including James Brown, Parliament-Funkadelic, Bootsy Collins, and George Clinton.

The Troubadour has also been home to many up-and-coming Funk groups, providing a platform for them to showcase their talents to the world. In recent years, groups such as Dâm-Funk, Free Moral Agents, and Sweat Lodge have all graced the stage at The Troubadour.

If you’re a fan of Funk music, then a visit to The Troubadour is a must. Whether you’re seeing a world-renowned artist or an up-and-coming talent, you’re sure to have a Funktastic time!

The Roxy


The Roxy is located on the Sunset Strip in West Hollywood, California. The venue has a capacity of 1,100 people and features a variety of musical genres, including funk, soul, R&B, hip-hop, and rock. The Roxy has been open since 1973 and is one of the most iconic music venues in Los Angeles.


The Roxy Theatre is a legendary nightclub on the Sunset Strip in Los Angeles, California. The Roxy opened on September 23, 1973, and became a focal point for the L.A. punk rock scene in the late 1970s. It was also one of the first venues to embrace funk music in the early 1980s. The Roxy has hosted some of the biggest names in music over the years, and it remains one of the best places to hear funk music in Los Angeles.

Notable Performances

The Roxy has been the site of many memorable performances over the years. Here are some of the most notable:

-In 1977, The Runaways, fronted by a young Joan Jett, played their first show at The Roxy.
-In 1978, Van Halen made their debut at The Roxy.
-In 1982, Prince recorded a live album at The Roxy.
– In 1991, Nirvana played their last show with original drummer Chad Channing at The Roxy.
– In 1994, Pearl Jam recorded a live album at The Roxy.

The Whisky a Go Go

The Whisky a Go Go is one of the best places to hear funk music in Los Angeles. The venue has a long history of hosting some of the biggest names in the genre, and they continue to bring in some of the best talent from around the world. If you’re a fan of funk music, this is one venue you definitely don’t want to miss.


Funk music originated in the mid-1960s as a way to bring the energy of soul and R&B to a wider audience. The style quickly spread across the country, with some of the best funk bands emerging from Los Angeles. If you’re looking to get your groove on, here are the best places in L.A. to hear funk music.

The Whisky a Go Go
This famous Sunset Strip club is known for being the first venue to host Led Zeppelin’s U.S. debut in 1969. But The Whisky is also a popular spot for funk bands, both up-and-coming and established. In recent years, artists like Maceo Parker, Parliament Funkadelic, and George Clinton have all graced the stage.

The Roxy Theatre
Located just down the street from The Whisky, The Roxy is another legendary Sunset Strip club that has hosted its fair share of iconic funk bands. Prince played his first L.A. show here in 1980, and Parliament Funkadelic was known to drop in for surprise performances back in their heyday. If you’re lucky, you might catch one of these reunion shows today.

The Mint
This historic jazz club in Downtown Los Angeles has been hosting nightly shows since 1937. These days, The Mint features a mix of jazz, blues, and soul performers, with funk bands occasionally taking the stage as well. Catch a show here and you’ll see why this place has been a staple of the L.A. music scene for generations


Whisky a Go Go is a nightclub in West Hollywood, California. The club is considered the prototype for the modern rock venue. It was opened on January 11, 1964 by Elmer Valentine and Douglass Thompson, then renovated and re-opened on April 16, 1966 as a music club with an emphasis on experimental jazz and beat music.

The Whisky played an important role in the development of punk rock and new wave music in Southern California in the 1970s. It was one of the main venues of the mid-to-late 1960s Sunset Strip music scene and continued to showcase emerging bands into the 1980s. Among the long list of musical acts that have played at the Whisky are The Doors, Led Zeppelin, The Byrds, Love, Janis Joplin, Jimi Hendrix, Vanilla Fudge, Steppenwolf, Buffalo Springfield, Neil Young, machine gun-toting poet Jim Morrison performed there with his band The Doors for six months in 1966–67.

In addition to being one of the most iconic music venues in Los Angeles history, the Whisky a Go Go is also famous for being one of the pioneers of go-go dancing. A new dance craze started at the club in 1965 which spread quickly throughout the country and internationally. The craze began when dancer / choreographer Charles Garth brought two Unique timing women dancers from his frequent live performances at take three nightclub on Santa Monica Blvd to perform between sets on Mondays which were typically very slow nights.

Notable Performances

The Whisky a Go Go has been one of the most iconic music venues in Los Angeles since it opened in 1964. The club has been the launching pad for many famous bands, including The Doors, Janis Joplin, and Jimi Hendrix.

The Whisky is also known for being one of the first clubs to book funk bands like Parliament-Funkadelic and The Meters. In the 1970s, the club became a mecca for the emerging disco scene. DJs like Steve Dahl and Vicki Sue Robinson played records at the club that would later become classics.

Today, the Whisky a Go Go is still one of the best places to hear funk music in Los Angeles. The club books both local and national acts, and it’s not uncommon to see legends like George Clinton or Bootsy Collins take the stage.

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