Opened in 1971 as a European influenced café and blues venue, Blind Pig was originally named for the slang term for police officers who were bribed to ignore illegal speakeasy joints during the prohibition period in the U.S.
While it was originally opened as a blues club, presently you can find primarily indie rock and local bands on the roster (as of this writing in 2019 they have added hip hop nights as well). Blind Pig is most famously known for being the training ground for numerous national acts such as Jack White and the White Stripes, Kid Rock, Soundgarten, Pearl Jam, and The Smashing Pumpkins. Nirvana, who played a sold-out show in 1989, has been known to site the Blind Pig as their favorite venue to play.
With its close proximity to one of the state’s major universities, Blind Pig attracts students, locals, and tourists alike—all lured by the history that speaks within its walls. The club has been featured in Rolling Stone, which probably contributed to its narrow escape from being erased from existence in 2017 when it was sold to new owners who vowed to keep the club intact and alive. Due to the intimate vibe, Blind Pig is mostly standing-room-only and can get crowded, so plan accordingly.
Under the club, you’ll find the bathrooms for the venue, as well as the 8 Ball Saloon, a self-titled “dive bar” with cheap drinks, pool, darts, video games, and access to surcharge-free tickets for Blind Pig shows. Though there is free popcorn, you’re best off eating before or after your visit as they don’t serve food in any other capacity. Bar hours are 3 pm - 2 am daily. Ticket prices and age restrictions for shows vary, so be sure to check their website and Facebook pages for the latest.