Music capital

20 Reasons Why Atlanta Is America’s Music Capital

Nashville, NYC, LA, Austin—bless your heart

BY Atlanta MagazineMay 11, 2018


Artwork by Alex Fine

Atlanta is the best city for music. It’s a bold claim, we know. But we’re tired of reflexively straying, obscuring our greatness in a show of Southern hospitality. It’s not that we don’t appreciate what New York, Los Angeles, Nashville and Austin have to offer. We hear them when they tell us that their cities are the best, the coolest, the most avant-garde. But, bless their hearts, we know better.

Check out the Billboard 100. You’ll see singers, songwriters, producers, and engineers who were originally from Atlanta or moved here because they know what’s undeniably true: Atlanta is America’s music capital.

We don’t follow trends; we fix them. Why is our city the perfect place to cultivate talent? It’s not just the hot weather or the fact that our homes have garages where garage bands can play. Our studios are home to some of the most innovative tough guys in the business. Our festivals go wild. Our artists are mentors and entrepreneurs. Our colleges are revolutionizing the way music is made. We benefit from a unique intersection of cultures.

We are singers, musicians, writers, creators. We are DIY. We are different. And we are the best. Here are 20 reasons why.

Edited by Christine Van Dusen with contributions from Mustafa Abubaker, Jerry Grillo, Christina Lee, Allison McCallum, Austin L. Ray, Betsy Riley, Mara Shalhoup, Thomas Wheatley and Jewel Wicker