The Beat of Fort Collins

Sarah Ross

photo credit: madison brandt
photo credit: madison brandt

Nestled in the Northern Rockies, hidden away just passed the bustle of Denver and the rural sheik of Greeley, is the cultural epicenter that is Fort Collins. It’s a city known as a hub for local products, ranging from local brews to local produce to local art. The thing Fort Collins may be the proudest of, though, is its local music scene.

Music is everywhere in this mid-sized town. With just over 150,000 residents, Fort Collins ranks as the fourth largest city in the state, yet there are three different music festivals hosted here annually. FoCoMx, Taste of Fort Collins, and Bohemian Nights are held here each year in April, June, and August, respectively.


The headlines of these festivals are often Colorado talents, ranging from small bands that are popular in the local venues to bands that have hit the big break and are touring nationally. Last August, the Bohemian Nights headlined the Flobots and Nathaniel Rateliff and the Night Sweats, both talented groups that had garnered national attention playing on a small local stages in the state they call home.

This year’s headliners have been announced for the Taste of Fort Collins, with Andy Grammar closing the night out. The headliners for FoCoMx are still in talks, while the Bohemian Nights headliners will not be announced until this summer.

If open air festivals are not your scene, Fort Collins also sports many indoor locations for live music. Many of these venues are actually cafes, restaurants, and other businesses that house concert areas or halls within them, so that you can listen to the live music made by our home grown musicians as you go about almost any activity.

photo credit: madison brandt
An indoor venue photo credit: madison brandt

One of the most popular local music venues is Avogadro’s Number. A little coffee shop by day, nestled close to the Colorado State University campus, it hosts everything from poets to musicians to open mic nights. At night, this bar and eatery turns into a central hub of sound, hosting events of all types of music and art. Whether you want a coffee to start your day or a beer to unwind in the evening, Avogadro’s is the place to soothe your munchie musical cravings.

If you are a music purest and want a location dedicated to the music you are consuming, the best indoor venue for local talent is the Aggie Theater. It is considered a second home to many local musicians, and they also have themed nights, like the Celebration for Bob Marley that will be held on the 4th of February. They host musicians from every genre and of every size and fan base, and it is a prime location to blow off some steam after a long day of work and school.

For an average town, Fort Collins knows how to turn up the tunes. There is music on every street corner, musicians from all walks of life, and music lovers from all over the world. With this blog, I hope to share with you some of the amazing music happening within the city limits, shed light on tunes rocking the airwaves and shaking up the town, or uncovering hidden gems that may touch the souls of our civilians. Enjoy the musical journey.  


Collegian Blogger Sarah Ross can be reached online at or on Twitter at @HowSarahTweets. Read more of her content on or at under Music. Leave a comment!