Where to Catch the Best Live Music in Friday Harbor

The San Juan Islands with their inspiring nature and wildlife are home to more working artists than anywhere else in Washington State. There are seven galleries and five museums in walking distance to Friday Harbor’s ferry alone. This quaint former fishing village has a sophisticated community theater, a Shakespeare Festival, writers, poets, culinary art and of course breathtakingly talented musicians of every genre imaginable.

Summer is the best time to catch awesome, often free concerts, if you know where to be and when. Let’s get listening and dancing!


Experience local and regional music, every Friday at 5:00pm and Sunday at 2:00pm, between July 2 to September 3, down on the waterfront by the Totem Poles. Bring a picnic, stroll on by on your way to dinner and tap your foot while watching the sailboats bob in the water.

Insider Tip: Have a cocktail on the outdoor deck of the Restaurant at the Friday Harbor House with your music.


Don’t miss the Music on the Lawn concert series in July and August at the San Juan Island’s Historical Museum grounds, Wednesday evenings at 6:30pm. This free, festive event features funk, hip hop, reggae, folk, swing and more. We promise you won’t be able to sit still.

Insider Tip: Explore all of the grounds of San Juan Island’s Historical Museum while there.


This gem of a theater with two performance venues in the heart of Friday Harbor puts on local, regional as well as national music and theater acts all year-round. Whether it’s chamber and choral music you are looking for, an evening with local singers and songwriters or well-known, off-island bands, you’ll find it here.

Insider Tip: Have a glass of local wine or an ice-cream bar at intermission.


This casual restaurant serves local and organic fare, has 23 beers on tap and over 35 wines to choose from, as well as a full bar. Almost every night after dinner, around 7:00pm they push the tables aside and host a live, free band. It may be Rock or Swing or Gypsy Jazz or the band hands out music so you can sing along. The Rumor Mill is a lovely place to spend a warm Summer night.

Insider Tip: dance like nobody is watching.


There is not just (excellent) food at the Saturday’s Farmer’s Market at the Brickworks Plaza. You will also find local arts and crafts, body care products, chair massages, resplendent flowers, plants and free live music, starting at 11:30am. Shop for island-made gifts or a picnic to take to the beach.

Insider Tip: Have a freshly baked European pastry from Café Demeter’s stand (or two).

There are other restaurant, bars and fun, unique venues offering live music in Friday Harbor. Find who’s playing when you are staying here.