In rural southwestern Ohio, good concerts may be hard to find.
With the closest large urban center at least 45 minutes away, music-loving Miami students have turned to Uptown Oxford’s Brick Street Bar & Grille, 36 E. High St., to satisfy their concert cravings.
Brick Street has been hosting concerts since the early 2000s, and this fall welcomed students back to Oxford with three consecutive nights of live music, featuring artists Gentleman Hall, Zach Lockwood, 3LAU, DJ ETrayn and DJ Dante. Since then, the bar has hosted 15 other acts and is scheduled to present two more before the end of the school year.
E.J. Blair, a promoter for Brick Street, explained in an email ticket prices depend on how much the artist costs to bring in, but there have never been tickets sold for more than $27. Generally, ticket prices range between $5 to $25 if they are bought in advance, and cost up to an additional $5 if they are purchased at the door the day of the show.
“The country concerts consistently do well,” Blair said. “Brick Street hasn’t booked many big EDM acts, and rap concerts are hit or miss. Usually if there’s a big radio song, the artists tend to generate more pre-sale tickets at Brick Street.”
Half of this year’s concerts have featured country music artists including Dustin Lynch, Kip Moore and Cole Swindell. They are presented on Wednesday’s “Country Night.” Other concerts are usually scheduled on weekend or Thursday nights.
First-year Ali Royer said she saw Kip Moore for the second time when he came to Brick Street in December, and at that time was able to meet him after the concert. Royer saw Moore by his tour bus after the show, and after waiting in a short line was able to meet and take a picture with him.
“My favorite part was meeting him because I wouldn’t get to do that at a bigger venue,” Royer said.
Sophomore Jillian White, who has been to three concerts at Brick Street, also said she thinks it is much easier to meet artists playing the bar because the atmosphere is more intimate and relaxed.
Two weeks ago, White attended the sold-out Cherub concert and said the bar was as crowded as it normally is on a weeknight.
“It’s usually really fun just because it’s a different crowd than you would actually see out because it’s a lot of people that are just going for the concert strictly,” White said. “It’s fun listening to live music.”
Beyond Cherub, Blair also said Chance the Rapper, Barstool Blackout and Pusha T were some of the most popular concerts this year. Some big-name artists have performed in the past, including ASAP Rocky, Gavin DeGraw, Timeflies and Hoodie Allen.
Royer and White both said Brick Street brings the varied types of artists Miami students like.
“I think they do a pretty good job of mixing it up for the most part, but sometimes there’s a lot of artists I haven’t heard of,” Royer said.
The Brick Street concert scene is well known for its annual hosting of Barstool Blackout, which is a concert featuring several DJs along with a light and fog show to create a rave-like atmosphere.
First-year Connor McDermott went to the second night of Barstool Blackout this year, which was completely sold out within hours.
“The atmosphere with the lights and fog machines made it really fun,” McDermott said. “The crowd was pretty similar to a normal Brick Street crowd but everyone was definitely more crazy and dressed in rave clothes.”
With the last few months of school winding down, Miami students still have two more opportunities to catch a show at Brick Street.
On Thursday, March 20 the DJ duo Chainsmokers will perform for $10 and Brett Eldredge will come for his second show on Wednesday, April 16 to finish out the Brick Street concert season. Tickets for Brett Eldredge start at $12.