Little Havana Music & Nightlife

Cuban son in Little Havana
Cuban son in Little Havana

Little Havana has many music options — at least ten or more on any given weekend evening. We’re home to everything from nostalgia-inspiring Cuban charanga and son groups to dramatic Spanish flamenco music, high-energy merengue, punta and timba bands to flavorful infusions of Afro-Cuban beats into funk, jazz or hip-hop.

In Little Havana, I’ve listened to — or should I say experienced — some of absolutely thrilling jam sessions imaginable, featuring internationally renowned musicians from the world of Latin and Caribbean music, including talents that deserve such recognition.

As someone who has spent a lot of time around musicians, I know how inspired they are by their audience, and in Little Havana’s venues, our audience members are unafraid to interact with performers and show their appreciation by clapping, dancing or even singing along.

We have so many terrific musicians in this neighborhood, and in this city, that I’m no longer surprised by sudden celebrity guest appearances at events, where musicians in the audience are invited to join in the performance. You’d be surprised at how many our local performers include those who have been nominated, or have even won, a Latin Grammy.

Don’t expect to find just Latin music in our venues, either. Some places feature jazz, rock, classical music or house music — although you may notice a Latin twist to it, especially if the group is local!

Miami’s music reflects the diversity of the city itself. A lot of the original, made-in-Miami music mixes swinging Afro-Latin beats with electronica, and much takes traditional folkloric music and gives it a creative twist.

Our festivals are free, too (like Viernes Culturales and the Calle Ocho Festival), and are a great way to check out a lot of different musical groups and genres on a single day. Read more about our local events.

How to Best Experience Local Venues

In some of our local venues, the staff may speak very limited English. You may or may not be greeted warmly. You may wait awhile for drinks — don’t hesitate to remind the wait person. Please don’t take it personally. It’s a Miami thing.

Local Music Venues

Each of our local nightclubs has its own crowd, which might be predominantly Cuban, Central/South American, or a complete mix. Clubs may be upscale, very casual and informal, or somewhere in between. Some rely on DJs and others have live bands, and many bring outstanding local entertainers or hugely popular artists from countries like the Dominican Republic, Honduras or Mexico — and even Cuba — to perform on their stages.

Cover charges at our local venues are minimal, and plenty of venues (especially restaurants) may not even require a cover. Prefera talented DJ to steer you through the beats and the music? We have plenty of dance clubs and DJs, including some who throw live music into the mix.

 

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