Stetson Saloons

Do you know what time it is? Cowboy-boot-scootin’ time.

Tucked into Scottsdale’s chichi surroundings is a handful of western watering holes that play live music every night of the week.

Packed to the rafters with Stetsons and steer horns, Handlebar J is a landmark honky-tonk. Both the saloon and its musical owners, the Herndon Brothers, have been inducted into the Arizona Music and Entertainment Hall of Fame. Listen to live country music six nights a week. On Tuesdays, kick up your heels for line-dancing lessons, and on Wednesdays, learn to two-step to twangy heartbreakers.

If the swinging doors are open at Rusty Spur Saloon, there’s probably live music. Seven days a week, often starting before high noon and going all day, cowboy crooners the likes of Russ Reiter or the Psychobilly Rodeo Band entertain locals and tourists alike. Smack in the center of Old Town, this friendly spot festooned with kitsch and snark is the place to laze away an afternoon nursing a longneck.

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Dierks Bentley’s Whiskey Row kicks Western bars into the 21st century.

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This raucous barn-sized space rocks with wraparound flat-screen TVs, beer and liquor taps on the booth tables, and a trendy – though still plaid-clad – crowd. Bands play a couple nights a week in a space suspended above the bar. On Wednesdays, make like the namesake country singer (a local boy gone platinum) during live-band karaoke.


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