Carlee: How to Survive Overlapping Due Dates During Finals Season

As a student in COM, I don’t always have final exams at the end of the semester.  It’s the final projects that kill me, and they are always due right around the time of our last week of classes

Coming into the last month of the semester, I thought I would be swamped and overwhelmed with all of the things that I need to do and deadlines that I had to meet. However, it is now the last week of classes and I am getting everything that I need to turned in all while getting enough sleep each night. It feels great and it is manageable!

 If you find yourself in a similar situation with so many assignments and overlapping due dates, here are some tips to help get those projects done and stay as stress-free as possible.

  1. Plan plan plan!
    Planning definitely is the first step to staying organized around finals season. Make lists and utilize your planner and calendar. Keep track of what is due on each date, so that when those dates approach, you haven’t forgotten about them and you feel prepared. A planner really is a COM student’s best friend!
  2.  Set goals (and make sure they’re realistic!)

    Set a different day aside each week to work on a certain project or essay. Dedicating the time to work on your assignments helps you stay organized and in control, but I know that it can be challenging.

    I struggle with this the one the most; I set goals easily, but sticking to them always gets me. It’s hard to stick to your goals when a new Netflix show comes out that you’ve been dying to binge or an extracurricular of yours is hosting a big event. You just have to prioritize and be realistic! Set time aside for both your assignment and your Netflix show. You’ll deserve the breaks if you get some work done!

  3.   Try to work on each project a little bit each week leading up to its deadline
    I know it’s easier said than done, but really, having a little bit of your project done before you officially get to working on it will make you feel better about it in the end. You’ll know that you have at least some of it done, and you’ll have an idea of which direction to go from there. You never want to put yourself in a situation where it’s the week your assignment is due, and you still have no idea what you want to do for it. I know it happens to the best of us once in a while, but if you can step in and prevent that from happening, take advantage of it!

  4. Ask for an extension if you know you’ll need it

    If you think that your overlapping due dates really will be a concern for you and your wellbeing, ask your professor for an extension! Professors can be a lot more understanding than you may think, and that includes the scary professors, too.

    I had a ten-page paper due amidst other projects, such as a short film, a Spanish essay and an exam, and another lengthy essay. It was also tech week for a musical that I assistant produced, so I knew I was very limited with time. I asked my professor for an extension of a couple days because I knew that my paper would really benefit from it. Don’t be afraid to reach out to your professors; you’ll feel so relieved to have that extra time if you need it.

    So, it’s the night before you have two big projects due, and neither of them are finished…

    What do you do?!

     You take a deep breath, have some caffeine, and tell yourself that you got this, because you are amazing and capable of taking on any challenge!

     We love challenging ourselves here in COM, and that’s really all that finals season is: a challenge. If you stay organized and practice selfcare, you can take on any challenge. Embrace the hustle of being a college student, and go get things done! I believe in you! 🙂


Geneve: The Best Trader Joe’s Snacks for College Students

Before I moved to Boston for college, I didn’t get the hype about Trader Joe’s. Back home, it was the “expensive grocery store that was overhyped.” This summer, I lived in my first apartment and needed to grocery stop on my own for the first time. Then, I understood the hype about T.J.’s. I haven’t looked back since.

First of all, the stereotype that it’s an expensive grocery store is completely false. In fact, Trader Joe’s is probably the cheapest grocery store in the city. I used to do all my grocery shopping at Target, and I would almost always rack up a bill of $50-$60 a week. Star Market is absolutely unquestionably more expensive than Target. Most of the time, I can walk out of Trader Joe’s spending $25-$40, depending on what I get. That’s a steal.

I’ve compiled below some of my favorite things to get that are on my list almost every week. The next time you’re bored of the snacks you always opt for, give these a try!

Mini Vegetable Samosas + Dipping Sauce

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These vegetable samosas are crispy little triangles filled with a mixture of lentils, peas, potatoes, onions, and Indian spices. They heat up quickly in the microwave and are just the perfect combination of crispy and soft.

For the dipping sauce, mix equal parts almond butter, soy sauce, and honey. At first, this combination sounds interesting. But believe me, it is one of the greatest things you will ever taste. All of my friends and suite mates would agree. It’s slightly thick, nutty, sweet, and salty, all at once. Of course, if you like one particular ingredient more, you can always adjust portions to taste.

Pumpernickel Pretzel Sticks + Pub Cheese

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This combination was actually first introduced to me by COM advisor Bryan (he trained us orientation leaders this summer and always brought us bags full of snacks from Trader Joe’s every meeting). I always got to take extras of this combo home so obviously, it grew on me. The combination of the tastes of these two are just perfect.

Tatte-inspired Ricotta and Jam Toast

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I actually have to give my friend Sam full credits for this one. She runs an Instagram page, @EZDormCookin. She buys the San Francisco sourdough bread and spreads whole milk ricotta cheese and strawberry preserves on top. I love having this in the morning for breakfast because it’s just the perfect mix of sweet and salty and gives me enough nutrients to last till lunch!

These are just a few of my favorite food finds at Trader Joe’s! I highly recommend a trip down to the T.J.’s at Coolidge Corner and a good stroll through all the aisles. You might find your next favorite snack, or a few!

Shaun: Four T Stops That Will Show You a Different Side of Boston

  1. Maverick
    This stop is in the heart of East Boston, which is the neighborhood that includes Logan Airport and its surrounding area. East Boston is largely residential, but the square around the station is packed with small shops and restaurants. Walk down from the station to Lewis Mall Harbor Park for what is (in my opinion) the best view of the downtown skyline and Charlestown anywhere.
    How to get there: Take the Green Line C/D from Kenmore, inbound to Government Center. Change to the Blue Line, outbound to Maverick.
  2. Kendall/MIT
    This one’s much closer to BU (and on a nice day is actually pretty walkable). Kendall Square is buzzing with stores and restaurants, and the architecture (in true MIT fashion) is interesting. The station has big chimes in between the tracks, and they clang together to play music if you turn a lever on the platform.
    How to get there: Take the Green Line B from anywhere on Comm. Ave. (or the C/D from Kenmore), inbound to Park Street. Change to the Red Line, inbound to Kendall/MIT.
  3. Forest Hills
    It’s a bit of a ride to the southern end of the Orange Line — but Forest Hills is worth the trek for its proximity to the Arnold Arboretum, a massive and beautiful park/nature center owned by Harvard. Spend a couple hours walking the trails, then head up South Street until you hit the commercial core of Jamaica Plain. Restaurants are abundant and the houses are beautiful.
    How to get there: Take the Green Line B from anywhere on Comm. Ave. (or the C/D from Kenmore), inbound to Park Street. Walk through the underground concourse to Downtown Crossing. Change to the Orange Line, outbound to Forest Hills.
  4. Courthouse
    If you haven’t spent time in the Seaport neighborhood, you’re missing out (ever been to the Lawn on D? That’s in the Seaport). The neighborhood quite literally gets larger every day with constant construction, but there’s a ton of stores and restaurants already well open for business. Head over to the waterfront and check out the massive federal courthouse building, as well as a view of the financial district and ferry terminals.
    How to get there: Green Line B from anywhere on Comm. Ave. (or the C/D from Kenmore), inbound to Park Street. Change to the Red Line (toward Ashmont or Braintree), outbound to South Station. Change to the Silver Line (1/2), outbound to Courthouse.

Hali: Things to Look Forward to in Spring Semester

In my opinion, spring semester is approximately 1000 times more fun than fall semester. I’ve never fully known why, I just know that it’s true! 

As you prepare to head home for spring break, take a moment to consider how completely amazing next semester is going to be. There’s so much to look forward to at BU in the springtime!

I’ll be honest and say that I mostly chose to write about this topic to make myself less sad about the fact that my semester abroad is over. But alas, without further adieu, here are the top reasons I’m excited to come back to BU: 

Cold weather! Snow days! 

I literally can’t believe I’m saying this! Since I’ve been in London, we’ve been spoiled with 55 degree weather throughout November and December. I packed my cute winter coat and I haven’t even had a chance to wear it! Believe it or not, a part of me actually misses the ice-cold walks to class at BU. I can’t wait to come back and nearly catch frost bite every day! On a less-sarcastic note, snow days are one of the best parts of life so let’s hope we can look forward to those too! 

Open House Season

There is something that is SO exiting about those last few weeks of March. Suddenly, there are banners up and down Comm. Ave and flowers appear in front of every classroom building! Boston University has rejuvenated itself to welcome the potential Class of 2023! I LOVE open house season. If it looks like you are on a tour, I literally will stop you on the street and tell you about how much I love BU and probably also ask for your life story! In COM, I love giving tours to students who have already been admitted to the university. I love meeting prospective students at COM open house days in April. 

COM!!!!!

I MISS COM SO MUCH I COULD CRY!!!!!!! I can’t wait to come back to BU and be greeted by all those smiling faces in the undergraduate affairs office. I can’t wait to fight for a seat in the COM lounge. I can’t wait to see what life is like without computer labs! I can’t wait for it to be April so that I can lay on the COM lawn between classes! Is it time for COMapalooza yet? 

Being a senior/commencement??? What?????????

Hahahahahah what? I’m graduating? Apparently! I usually cry when I think about graduation, but you know what? I’m also embracing it! Graduation is the POINT of college, right? I can’t wait to spend the entirety of next semester living in the COM Career Center and applying to jobs on Handshake! My final semester at BU is bound to be a stressful time, but I must admit, the job hunt is also exciting! Who knows what the future holds?

Jon: Get Involved! BU’s Professional Film Fraternity

Going into the film industry is all about gaining hands-on experience as early as you can and fostering creative and collaborative connections with your peers. If you are a Film and TV major, want to work in the film industry, or join an organization of people interested and passionate about movies, check out DKA – BU’s national, professional, gender-inclusive, cinematic fraternity.
Who we are – DKA is a student organization at universities across the US in which students who aspire to work in the film industry can network and improve their industry skills. We are a professional fraternity, so professional development is at our core.
What we do – We host all kinds of events related to the film industry throughout the year. Every December we host a student film festival designed to showcase scripts and films from BU’s best filmmakers. We also do a production within the chapter each semester, usually a music video or a short film. Lastly, we also have a weekly screenwriters workshop for anyone who wants to get their scripts looked at by their peers. We also do a variety of social events that range from movie screenings to group retreats
How to join – Spring 2019 Rush starts in January so if you’re interested check us out on Facebook or on BU’s website. We will also be hosting rush events throughout the GSU all month so you can meet us there.
My professional skills and my network has grown as a part of DKA in addition to the lifelong friendships that I have fostered through the amazing people involved in this organization. If you’re interested you can also reach out to me via social media or email! We’d love to have you as a part of DKA!

Angeli: Video Interviews Aren’t That Scary

Ah, senior year. While your academic career might be slowing down, your professional career is only beginning. This time can thus be scarily summed up in two words: job search. Depending on your major and dream position, this *super* fun extracurricular might entice you as early as August or as late as May, but I’m sure I speak for all seniors when I say the consequent anxiety can last year-round.
I think what makes this chapter of undergraduate life so nerve-wrecking is all of the novelty it entails. Applying for internships is one thing, but applying for a full-time job is a very different ball game. The interviewing process often takes more rounds and requirements than you’re used to. You’ll likely be asked questions you’ve never prepared for. You’ll have to consider annual salary and benefits, vital necessities you’ve never really thought about before. Then, once you land the position, there’s the possibility of moving to a brand new city and having to find a new home and new friends.
I myself am still at the earlier stages of this course. I’ve started my application series and am now facing my own set of first’s. One of the most recent and most daunting is something we professionals like to call the “video interview.” For those who have never had to do one before (or yet), it’s an interesting concept to say the least. Essentially, instead of the traditional phone interview, a lot of companies are modernizing their first or second round of interviewing by using softwares that allow for online, recorded interviews. Here’s how it works:
 
1) You’re given a question to answer either written in text or delivered in a prerecorded video by your interviewer.
2) You have a controlled amount of time to think of your response (for me, it was 20 seconds.)
3) You have a controlled amount of time to record your response (for me, it was 2 minutes.) 
4) You revert to Step 1 until you’ve answered all of the questions (for me, it was a set of 6.)
When I recently received an email invitation to complete this kind of interview from a company at the top of my list, I was incredibly excited to have advanced to the next round of the application but also SO nervous. I had no idea what to expect, other than a horror story from my older brother about him cracking under the time-crunch pressure the last time he had to complete a video interview. Not wanting fear to get in the way of an immense opportunity, I aggressively surfed the web to prep myself as much as possible. Ultimately, I’m a video interviewer survivor quite happy with how it  turned out. I thought I should share what I learned with my fellow COM kids so you too can tackle this potential challenge.
Tip #1: PRACTICE.
Some video interviewing softwares, such as Wepow (the one I had to use), allow you to gain some experience before your actual interview via a couple of optional practice questions. I HIGHLY recommend taking advantage of this feature if it’s offered so that you don’t go in blind and can calm some of your nerves. If you’re unsure of whether you’ll have practice questions or want to build your confidence earlier, you can also take matters into your own hands by simply practicing with your webcam. Ask yourself some typical interview questions (see Tip #2) and set a timer of two minutes to see how eloquently you can answer under the constraint.
Tip #2: PREPARE.
Just as you would for any other kind of interview, make sure to do your research. Familiarize yourself with the company as much as possible but also see what you can find regarding its usual interviewing procedure from sources like Glassdoor and LinkedIn (hello BU alumni…) If you’re lucky, you’ll find questions asked to past applicants that can give you an idea of what to expect. If not, you can just look up and/or hypothesize typical questions asked in first or second rounds. From there, you can jot down ideas for answers that you can use while practicing. If you’re really lucky, you’ll end up prepping yourself for questions actually posed in the video interview. It happened to me!
Tip #3: POWER POSE.
Ever since I watched this life-changing Ted Talk in high school, I’ve been a huge proponent of power posing. If you’re feeling nervous as your mouse hovers over that interview link, take a moment to breathe and literally lift yourself up. Remind yourself that you’ve got this because the most important thing is to be yourself. Employers aren’t looking for robotic responses. You’ll want your recordings to feel as natural as an in-person conversation. And trust me, you’ll survive.

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Sydney: Time Flies When You’re Having Fun!

Four years ago, I came into BU confused and unsure of where it would take me. Fast forward to now, and I have been lucky enough to not only call Boston a second home, but studied abroad in both Dublin, Madrid, and next semester, Los Angeles.

Although I am sad my time in Boston is coming to an end, I am grateful for the opportunities I’ve had the past few years with some of the most amazing friends. 

I came to BU undecided with my major; I had no idea what I wanted to study and where the major would take me. I considered communications, business, and even nutrition. I joined several clubs such as BUTV, Her Network, and Student Government. Communications became my main interest, so after taking COM 101 freshman spring, I decided to declare my major in Public Relations. Freshman year really taught me to be open to new things, new people, and a new environment.

The summer after freshman year I had the opportunity to intern at NBC New York. This was my first real internship and I had an amazing experience learning about what it takes to work in a newsroom, especially one as highly regarded as NBC. Working out of 30 Rockefeller Plaza was a dream. It also confirmed my confidence in my recently declared major; I realized I did not want to be a journalist and that PR was the right choice.

Coming back to school sophomore year was so exciting; I was eager to be back on campus and reunite with my friends who I hadn’t seen all summer. I joined PRSSA, learning so much about the field of Public Relations. I spent the year as a Victoria’s Secret PINK Brand Ambassador, when we came so close to winning a free concert on BU’s campus out of over 100 schools. I planned a free yoga class and other events for PINK, as well as was flown to New York to visit the Victoria’s Secret headquarters. I became a COM Ambassador and joined my sorority, Sigma Kappa, meeting so many new, amazing people!

The summer after sophomore year I decided to study abroad in Dublin. I had never spent more than a week in another country before this, so I was extremely excited to immerse myself in a new city, learn about their culture, travel, as well as intern at Ali Coffey Casting. Spending the summer in Dublin was a dream; I made so many new friends from the program, and traveled around Ireland and Europe. I became so much more independent, and I miss my time in Dublin every day.

The fall of my junior year I was a Communications Intern in the Department of Biomedical Informatics at Harvard Medical School. I found this internship on Handshake, and although it did not align with my career goals of working in the entertainment industry, I learned more than I ever thought I would about the medical field, as well as discovered a new area of Boston- the Longwood area. This was my first semester being assigned a COM Ambassador group, and I really enjoyed helping mentor freshman and serve as a resource with their transition into college. My second semester junior year I studied abroad in Madrid, which was an amazing experience. The Madrid program was so different from my Dublin program because for one, I lived with a host family (who I miss so much!), there was a different language, and I met even more new friends. I traveled so much around Europe during those four months, and fell in love with the city of Madrid. I interned at a magazine called HELLO!, learning more about the journalism side of the entertainment industry. Although they were different, both of my study abroad opportunities were amazing experiences.

This past summer, I found an internship in LA at William Morris Endeavor, where I interned with students from all over the country, and further developed my passion for working in the entertainment industry.

This semester, I have been enjoying my last few months in Boston as much as I could. I am interning at Boston Casting, where I have been able to be an extra for a TV show, as well as learn about casting for feature films. I am spending a lot of time with my friends, who I will not see for a while since I will not be in Boston with them next semester. I’ve also been trying to explore different parts of Boston one last time.

Reflecting on these past few years have made me extremely grateful and feel so lucky for all the opportunities I have experienced, and the friendships I have made. Every experience has helped me grow immensely as an individual, and I know I will always keep growing. Next semester I am heading back to LA, this time on the BU Study Abroad Program. I am eager to be back in La La Land, and am so excited for the experiences coming my way. Although I will miss Boston, I know the LA program will bring even more opportunities and friendships to my life.

 I will see you at graduation, Boston.

Laura: So Much to Miss in Boston

Next semester, I will be traveling abroad to Sydney, Australia for Boston University’s internship program! I will be flying for approximately 21 hours to the land of beaches, kangaroos, and vegemite and saying goodbye to some American, and specifically Boston, staples. In memoriam of being away from those things for four months, I have composed a list of the things I will miss most while I am down under: 

  1. Trader Joe’s
    This is number one for a reason. I will miss the convenience of shopping at the Coolidge Corner store every week and the cauliflower rice!
  2. Marathon Monday
  3. T. Anthony’s Pizzeria 
  4. Picco pizza (I really like pizza, can you tell?)
  5. Studying on the 3rd or 6th floor of Mugar
  6. Going to the Boston Public Library to pick up books to read 
  7. The view from the 26th floor of Stuvi2
  8. American-specific content on Netflix (aka The Office)
  9. Lemonade
    Apparently ordering lemonade isn’t really a thing in Australia, the closest thing is Sprite.
  10. Flywheel classes in the Prudential
  11. Ketchup
    If there is one thing to know about me, I put ketchup on everything. Apparently, if I want ketchup in Australia I will have to ask for “tomato sauce,” but then what am I supposed to do if I actually want tomato sauce!? 
  12. Matcha lattes from the Pavement coffeehouse on Commonwealth Ave 
  13. Walking from my dorm in West campus to class in East campus each day 
  14.  FitRec
  15. Running the COM open house in April with my fellow COM Ambassadors
  16. The leaves changing on Bay State Road

Short list of things I will not miss: Snow and hearing everyone talk about Tom Brady. 

I will miss my friends, family, and Boston University as a whole more than anything (even more than Trader Joe’s). Boston University has prepared me to take a leap of faith and travel across the world and I know that I am prepared for this journey of a lifetime. I will be back soon Boston, don’t you forget about me! 

Lauren: Your Career in a Nutshell: A Guide to Making the Perfect Portfolio

Internship application season is well underway for journos, with most internship deadlines already passing on the first of November. However, plenty of publications are still looking for interns for the summer. You might have seen that a lot of applications call for portfolio websites, even for non-multimedia journalists. Don’t fret, making a portfolio is much easier than you might think! I’m here to take you through it step-by-step, and the end result will hopefully be a portfolio that showcases all of your skills and accomplishments as an aspiring journalist.

Step 1: Create it!

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As you can see above, welcome to my portfolio, laurenfrias.wordpress.com! For starters, pick a content management software (in layman’s terms: a website creator) to begin building your website. My personal preference was WordPress, as I had used it before to create blogs, but other popular websites include Wix and Squarespace. Once you find the best CMS for you, it’s time to name it! This is the easiest part. It’s just your name! You’ll find yourself at a disadvantage if the domain is already in use, but if that’s the case, consider using your middle initial or middle name as a whole to differentiate. You can go the extra mile and buy your domain name (for a small monthly fee depending on the website creator that you choose), and you’ll become the new sole owner of yourname.com. Congrats, now you have a website!

Step 2: Customize it!

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This is probably the most difficult step of them all. What’s good about website creators is that they come with a lot of preloaded designs that you can choose from. Make sure to choose the website layout that is the least complex to navigate, as most internship recruiters will rarely spend a lot of time trying to figure out the layout of your website than reading the content that you upload. Even if you’re drawn in by the pretty designs and pictures of a certain preset website designs, just remember that you can take a simpler website format and create the same aesthetic with a little bit of work on the Customizer toolbar.
Step 3: Personalize it!

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No, this is not a reiteration of the last step. Once you get the website to an aesthetic that you approve of, it’s time to really make it your own. That is, it’s time to showcase yourself as a journalist and make this portfolio a summation of what you’ve accomplished in your career thus far! That being said, make sure to write a concise About Me page with a short bio about yourself, kind of like how you would write in the introductory paragraph of a cover letter. Your portfolio is also a good place to keep an updated copy of your resumé for recruiters to find it to either screenshot or download for themselves, say in the instance that the file that you supplied was corrupted or it was not the most recent version. You should also include a Contact Me page, listing an email that you can be best reached at and a phone number. Be careful how you format it, however; there are lots of internet bots that can skim your phone number and email off your website and flood your inbox and voicemail with spam. One way that I’ve avoided it is through differentiating the typical email format (i.e. youremail (at) gmail (dot) com) or simply omitting the information as a whole.

Step 4: Upload it!

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As you might have seen in the title of this blog, this is your career in a nutshell; I only emphasize this point because it’s important not to make your portfolio a complete timeline of your experiences. Instead, it highlights the best parts of your past experiences and shows your potential employer in five minutes or less what you may have accomplished in five years, or whatever the case may be. In my opinion, I would upload your top five to seven clips of your best work from each of your past internships, and maybe even less so depending on how much experience you have. On my portfolio, I provided links to my work on the original publication’s website, unless the article was blocked by a paywall, in which case I would create a downloadable file that had a PDF of the headline, text, publication, and date of publication. Make sure to create parent pages and child pages to easily organize your clips into a navigable structure.

Step 5: Update it!

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Now that you have a complete portfolio, the job isn’t over. As you grow and develop as a professional journalist, you need to make sure that your portfolio reflects that as well. That means updating it with your most recent clips, uploading an updated version of your resume, and making sure that the information included is the most relevant to who you are now (class year, current internship, etc.). It may seem like tedious work, but once you land the internship — or even job — of your dreams, it will all be worth in the long run.
With all of this information your disposal, I hope I was able to lessen the intimidation of creating a portfolio. It’s not as much of a beast as it seems, and with this step-by-step guide, you’ll see your byline in your dream publication in no time.

Zach: 5 Best Music Venues to See Shows at in the Boston Area

For decades, Boston has been known as one of the nation’s best music city’s. From its thriving DIY scene, to the talent which flows out of Berklee College of Music, and to some of the most historically great venues around Beantown has all you can want musically. As a musician, this was obviously a huge factor in selecting Boston as my new home for four years. Living in Allston, about a mile away from BU’s Central Campus, has allowed me to become ingrained with its thriving music culture in its local bars and sweaty basements. For many, the Allston DIY lifestyle is not for them, in fact, many BU students simply want to see a concert or two every semester from some of their favorite artists. Luckily, Boston has some of the coolest spots to see live music which go above and beyond the DIY ethos of Allston Rat City.

5. House of Blues
Located right across the street from Fenway Park, the House of Blues Boston provides your standard General Admission experience. The venue is perfectly situated for those East Campus folk who don’t feel like dropping gobs of money on transportation. The House of Blues hosts some bigger names then the rest of the venues on this list—the types of artists that are right between playing TD Garden and the Royale. I have seen some excellent shows here as the sound and ambience is consistently on point.

4. Brighton Music Hall
Brighton Music Hall is a smaller, unimposing venue right down Brighton Ave. in Allston. With this being said, it’s probably the largest venue in Rat City you can go to outside of Paradise Rock Club (not a fan). Although I have only seen one show here, BMH holds a tremendous amount of real estate in my heart because it was where I saw my first concert as a BU student, in fact, it was the first show I attended in Boston, period. My memory is a little fuzzy on what the space looks like, but the sound was fantastic and plenty of local talent rolls through. This is the perfect place to go if you are looking to see an act that you have never seen before.

3. The Middle East
Amid some sexual assault allegations on one the Middle East’s promoters, I have not been to this venue in a very long time. If it weren’t for said allegations, the Cambridge restaurant and nightclub would probably occupy the #1 spot on this list. Fortunately, I believe the assailant has been removed from the venue and I have seen more and more artists that I have liked reappearing on bills there. The Middle East may be known for its great Middle Eastern fair, but it also serves as a fantastic venue by night. Three rooms designated for shows occupy the building: the Upstairs, the Downstairs, and Sonia, a newer space which is really what makes this venue so great. The Middle East Upstairs is a much tighter knit venue, but holds some pretty solid smaller acts, while Downstairs holds larger shows equivalent to that of the Sinclair. Sonia is a middle ground between the two and has the best sound and layout for some really killer shows!

2. Royale
Most know the Royale as a nightclub, but the space actually holds some of the best shows that I have been to in Boston. I have seen a number of acts at this downtown location and it never ceases to amaze me how well the venue runs its shows. The sound and lights have been perfect at every show I’ve seen at the Royale. The venue always hosts great acts, too. I’m always finding myself clicking the “Interested” button on Facebook events held at the Royale. If there is any venue that hosts mid-sized to bordering on the larger side acts, the Royale is above and beyond the best. My only gripe is that the middle of the GA section is raised due the fact that its main room is often used as a clubbing space.

  1. The Sinclair
    Finally, we have reached #1, and yes it is The Sinclair. The Sinclair is a mid-size to smaller size venue which hosts acts of all kinds. It is located right in Harvard Square, which makes it a little difficult to get to, but the venue itself is incredibly ideal. I have only seen great shows here with fantastic crowds. The lighting and sound are on par with the Royale, but the smaller size is much comfier without feeling too small. Similarly to Brighton Music Hall, plenty of local acts play here. It’s another space perfect for seeing artists that you may have never seen before, while also hosting plenty of household names.