The Standard Manchester Music Story tour begins in Albert Square with stories of famous bands and clubs from the 1960s. Next, see legendary music venues, clubs and landmarks as you pass through the decades to when Manchester music dominated the world. The tour begins in the city centre, before travelling out to Salford and finally returning the city centre.

The Standard Music Story Tour ends at the Hard Rock Café.

Standard Manchester Music Story Route

A tour guide will take you through the story of Manchester’s music scene, beginning in the 60s right the way through to the present day. The content has been carefully selected by eminent Manchester historian Jonathan Schofield. The narration is accompanied by a soundtrack featuring Manchester’s iconic bands and artists.

Starting in Albert Square, the Standard Music Story Tour Bus tour takes you on a journey through Manchester’s rich musical history. The route passes the locations of Manchester’s original live music venues that laid the foundations for Manchester’s musical domination in the decades to come. Then, see the former location of the Haçienda, the ultimately ill-fated venture by New Order and Factory Records that was, for a time, the most famous club in the world. Besides these venues, the city centre part of the tour includes the Free Trade Hall, the venue where the trajectory of Manchester music was changed forever; the Ritz Ballroom, where The Smiths played their first gig; and Factory Records’ headquarters, who were the premier Manchester music label.

As you leave the city you will visit Salford Lads Club, which a shrine for Smiths fans. Then, returning to Manchester City centre you will see the former location of the Twisted Wheel, the iconic Northern Soul club and Johnny Roadhouse Music Store, a supplier of instruments to the stars. The tour also includes Band on the Wall, the Manchester Arena, and Chetham’s School of Music.

Hard Rock Cafe

The tour finishes at the Hard Rock Cafe, where You can enjoy a two-course meal from their Gold Menu. The Hard Rock Cafe contains a fascinating mix of musical memorabilia. You could dine next to Liam Gallagher’s guitar, David Bowie’s suit, or even John Lennon’s teapot.

Please note that our Music Story Tours are available to book for private group tours only.

Take a look at the Route map and find your points of interest