City Hall is a somewhat new music venue to the Nashville music scene. My first trip to this venue was in 2006 and I found it to be unlike ant other venues in Nashville. The venue itself is located in an outer area of downtown Nashville along the downtown perimeter called ‘The Gulch”. City Hall offers valet parking, however there seemed to be ample free parking. The close proximity of the free parking seems to make the cost of valet a waste. There is also a $5 grass lot, which is directly across the street from the free lot, which actually had a lot of spaces available. The Station Inn, also a music venue, is directly across the street and a bar with $2 drafts is right next door to City Hall. City Hall does allow you the ability to leave and come back without hassle. People seem to leave and go into the bar next door for the cheap beers and come back for the show.
City Hall is a fairly large warehouse that has been converted into a 1500-person music venue. There is a stage, a bar, and a few tables with plastic chairs along one wall and the floor is concrete. The back of the room is still a slanted ramp from its previous days as a warehouse, which makes it difficult to stand in the back. This is a smoking-allowed venue, and the low ceiling makes the cloud of smoke rather low. The stage is of a decent enough height to be able to see well from the back of the room, where there are few people standing. Besides the bar, there were also two kiosk-style beer lines on each side for people wanting a can of beer. The bar never appeared too crowded during the entire night I was there, possibly due to the fact that numerous people were getting drinks from the bar next door and bringing them back into City Hall. The choice of liquor at the bar at City Hall is somewhat limited, specifically they do not have any amaretto. Unlike a lot of venues, their bottled water was reasonably priced at $2 a bottle.
I found the bathrooms to be very clean and well lit, which is rare for a club or bar. There is a bathroom attendant in the bathroom, and she controls the soap and paper towels.
When I left City Hall, I noticed that the sound was clearly audible outside and possible just as good outside as it was inside. There is a metal bench positions just outside of the Station Inn and directly across from City Hall where you can perch yourself and apparently hear any show for free. In fact, there were people sitting there doing just that. Wish I had known…
City Hall is poised to become the best music venue in Nashville. It is easily accessible, has plenty of parking, decent prices drinks, quality shows come to City Hall and it is a nice, clean, fun place to hang out.
City Hall is located at 405 12th Ave. South, Nashville, TN.