Barcelona Guide for Music Enthusiasts: 7 Unmissable Experiences

The city map of Barcelona is a musical staff waiting to be explored, and Barcelona’s musical offerings are practically limitless.

Embark on a Musical Journey Through Barcelona via 40 Album Covers

Rockpapeltijeras, a unique website, has crafted a musical map of Barcelona that invites you to explore the city through the covers of forty albums that depict various locations throughout the city. From 70s psychedelic rock to Nova Cançó, spanning rumba, indie, and hardcore, it offers a different way to discover Barcelona—and perhaps some new music too.

Dive into the City’s Music Festivals

Barcelona hosts a plethora of music festivals, each offering diverse musical experiences every summer. The Sónar, Primavera Sound, and Cruïlla are some of the most well-known. However, we mustn’t overlook equally enjoyable events like the Reggaeton Beach Festival, Festival de la Porta Ferrada, Cap Roig Festival in Calella, or Festival Jardins Terramar in Sitges. The extensive list of festivals and artists transforms Barcelona into an immense and magnificent stage.

Explore (and Shop at) Music Stores

While Barcelona may have fewer music stores than you’d like, it offers a diverse selection to choose from. From record and vinyl stores like Vinil Vintage, Revólver Records, or Vinilarium Record Store, where you can get lost for hours searching for your favorite classics, to acclaimed luthiers like Jean Pierre Sardin or Casa Luthier and Luthier Vidal, who work magic with every instrument they craft. The list of music stores, catering to both enthusiasts and practitioners, is quite comprehensive. Find those that suit you best, and you’re sure to discover what you need.

Visit the Palau de la Música Catalana

If you live in Barcelona or spend a few days in the city, visiting the Palau de la Música Catalana is a must. Designed by architect Lluis Domènech i Muntaner, this UNESCO World Heritage site boasts an awe-inspiring concert hall adorned with trencadís technique and a magnificent stained glass skylight that bathes the space in light.

A guided tour is one of the best experiences music enthusiasts can have in Barcelona. And when you discover that legends like Igor Stravinski and Richard Strauss have graced this palace with their music, there’s no doubt left.

Attend a Concert at an Alternative Bar

Discovering emerging artists in Barcelona is as easy as finding tofu on a vegan menu: straightforward. The Catalan capital is the chosen stage for many indie bands and solo artists to take their first steps in the music world. As spectators, we couldn’t be more grateful. Every concert, no matter how small, needs an audience (that’s us), and of course, it requires a venue.

Fortunately, Barcelona boasts numerous alternative bars that shine a spotlight on these budding talents. Freedonia, where Alicante’s Orchards presented their original tracks for the first time, and JazzSí Club, where jazz, blues, and even Cuban music sessions are a daily delight, are some of our favorites.

Learn at the Museum of Music

Just as art enthusiasts visit MACBA and fashion aficionados explore the Museu del Disseny, music lovers should make their way to the Museu de la Música de Barcelona. Here, you’ll encounter a plethora of historic instruments, ancient pieces, and fascinating insights into music that you probably weren’t aware of. It’s an intriguing journey through the history of national and international music that will leave you as satisfied as your favorite dish.

Enjoy a Classical Music Concert by Candlelight

Every weekend, Candlelight illuminates some of the city’s most iconic spaces with the soft and flickering light of candles, offering classical concerts featuring artists from yesterday and today. From tributes to Ennio Morricone, Hans Zimmer, or Ludovico Einaudi at the Real Círculo Artístico to homages to Ed Sheeran or ABBA at the Modernist Recinto de Sant Pau, or a grand orchestra playing Queen’s classics at the Palau de la Música by candlelight. The extensive lineup demonstrates, once again, that Barcelona is one of the best cities when it comes to musical experiences for music enthusiasts.

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