Live&Up Close

Monday 02 March 2020

The people of Bay of Plenty have spoken – we like to hear our music loud, live and let loose. From

electronic and dub, to all-out rock, acoustic sounds and new wave indie, everywhere you look

there’s a gig around every corner. Here’s just a few of some cool spots to see live music.


Voodoo Lounge

This Mexican dive bar is the kind of hole in the wall you want to go to. Not only do they put on beer

and tacos, they also feature some of the funkiest new artists and DJs to come out of the region.

Wednesday nights are Voodoo Jams, an open mic night from 9pm for any local talent in any genre.

The kitchen is open late for those all-important tacos and when you’re not jamming out you can

jump on the arcade games and button smash your heart out.


The Jam Factory

Located behind The Incubator arts hub in Historic Village, this venue is off the beaten track and so is

the music you will experience. It was set up to give performers a platform on which they could

express and share their skills and in turn connect more people to performances of all kinds and from

all cultures. As well as gigs, they often host workshops and are moving into theatre as well with

improv group Honest Liars taking to the stage this month.


Totara Street

This multi-entertainment venue has seen some stuff and some things. Originally the area was part of

the Mauao Performing Arts Centre (Mauao PAC), it has since broken away to become its own venue

and hosts some of the best parties in the Bay. Last year saw a real mix – You Should Be Dancing, a

disco night with a DJ playing 1970s hits, was a sell-out success twice in 2019, L.A.B played a rocking

show in April, doof dominated, and tribute bands flocked, not to mention NZ legend’s Hollie Smith

and Head Like a Hole. It’s also been a platform for Toi Ohomai and Mauao PAC students to showcase

their skills, plus it recently hosted the comedy festival. It’s the place to be!


Miss Gee’s

New kids on the block Miss Gee’s is quickly becoming a Tauranga hot spot for DJs and late-night

parties. The gin bar has teamed up with Bass of Plenty and Celebro to bring Monthly DNB at Gees, a

regular doof night hosted by Hooky and Brutus Powers. DJs Sean Murray and Dick Johnson are also

regulars behind the decks. Located next to Masonic Park, it’s the perfect place to dance the night

away in a fun, friendly atmosphere.


Got a live venue you recommend? Hit us up and spread the word at