1. Bowery Ballroom
City: New York
Address: 6 Delancey St.
Coolest Feature: The killer balcony views
There are many music venues in New York City, but none have more personality than the Bowery Ballroom. The building where it resides was built at the end of the 1920s, just before the stock market plummeted. In the 15 years since its opening, the Bowery Ballroom has made visiting the Lower East Side a necessity for performers who venture into the city. The sound system, which resonates perfectly through each level, is the city's elite. The Bowery Ballroom is a magnet, drawing both the best talentand the most passionate followers who are fortunate enough to score a ticket. How often have you heard about a Bowery show being sold out? How many times has it left you incensed because you were missing out? Exactly.
Since its inception, the Bowery Ballroom has been where careers have been rerouted and born. In November 2010, Kanye delivered one of his best rants, addressing the trajectory of his career and the lamestream media's attempts to crucify him on the night My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy was released. In December 2011, cover girl Lana Del Rey sold out the Bowery out with her first New York City performance; the show—discussed ad nauseam—was the moment Del Rey's phoenix emerged from the ashes of Lizzy Grant.
The Bowery Ballroom has even gone Hollywood in recent years, appearing as one of the many destinations featured during the music-lover's wet dream that is Nick and Norah's Infinite Playlist. There are concert halls, and then there is The Bowery. Bow down to the ultimate venue.