Best Venues to Watch Up and Coming Bands in the Quad-Cities

This ain't no Nashville. Ain't no Los Angeles, either. This is the Quad-Cities. But there still are plenty of places to see bands that are stocked with rising stars, and in venues that are unique as the Quad-City metro area's name itself.

No matter your flavor, the venues listed below offer live bands from a variety of genres. For those who love to see live music, these places are must-visits whether you live in the Quad-Cities or are just passing through.

How big of a deal is Daytrotter? Well, judging from the coverage it gets in the local news media, apparently it is the Quad-Cities version of the Grand Ole Opry, or the Sydney Opera House, or maybe the Kennedy Center in Washington.

Daytrotter started out small enough, the brainchild of a very regular Joe (obviously not so much) named Sean Moeller. I had the pleasure of working with Sean at the local newspaper before he left to create this thing that has become just huge.

Daytrotter started out as a recording studio for local bands that were passing through the Quad-Cities. Being on the nation's largest east-west corridor, Interstate 80, you can't really go from coast to coast without whizzing by us.

Over the course of a decade, Moeller booked bands who recorded a combined 6,000 studio sessions, mostly above a pizza shop in downtown Rock Island. Then last year, Daytrotter moved across the river to 324 Brady St., Davenport, to a much larger venue, and began hosting live concerts and even a music festival.

With local news coverage on a scale rivaling that of how a head-of-state resignation would be covered by the global news media, Moeller stepped down from the company he created just last month. He retains a minority share, according to a story published in the Quad-City Times.
You can check out Daytrotter's concert schedule by clicking here.

Granola? Activism through expression?

One of a kind, that's for sure. Check out the ROZZ TOX manifesto.

ROZZ TOX is a coffee shop that also serves alcohol (not to be confused with the other way around). It has great food, including pizza, breakfast...even ice cream. But it also serves up live music, performance art, and all kinds of culture you won't find anywhere else.

Check out ROZZ TOX, located at 2108 3rd Ave., Rock Island, for yourself. Click here to explore their website.

Redstone Room
The Redstone Room is a remarkably cool venue located inside of a museum called the River Music Experience. It is a non-profit occupying an amazing space at 129 N. Main St. where downtown Davenport's modern-day revitalization all began.

The venue holds almost 300 people and is run by Ellis Kell, a musician himself and one heck of a nice guy who, like Moeller, I had the pleasure of working with back in my newspaper days.

RIBCO (Rock Island Brewing Co.)
Before Daytrotter, before ROZZ TOX, before the Redstone Room, there was the Rock Island Brewing Co., better known as RIBCO. It is an absolutely legendary concert venue as well as an absolutely legendary nightclub.

There even are tunnels beneath it. Rock Island was a Prohibition-era hotbed of organized crime made famous by gangster John Looney. You have to watch this news report by Local 4's Chris Langlois (complete with video from inside the tunnels) and see it for yourself. Otherwise, you never would believe it.

At any rate, RIBCO, 1815 2nd Ave., is known for getting some of the best acts in town. You can check out their live entertainment schedule by clicking here.

David Heitz has been a journalist for three decades and has scoured every inch of the Quad-Cities. He says he knows too much so he mostly writes about health these days, but still enjoys pointing out what's right about the Quad-Cities.