Songbyrd Music House and Record Cafe
2477 18th St NW
Washington, DC 20009
In a city like Washington, DC, much of daily life revolves around staying awake and alert. We drink more coffee than our bodies need in order to meet deadlines, deliver reports, and break news. As experts in the study of caffeine, many people in DC tend to recognize coffee by the way it smells and the way it tastes. But it’s not everyday you get to experience the sound of coffee-unless you’ve paid a visit to Songbyrd Music House and Record Cafe, that is.
Located in the heart of Adams Morgan, The Songbyrd Cafe serves good coffee with a side of great music. I began to appreciate the witty play on words once I realized that the alternate spelling of “Songbyrd” must be a reference to the classic American rock band.* I entered the cafe with an open mind and open ears. The music on tap was of the Motown genre and played exclusively on a vinyl record, which had me feeling good even before I consumed my first coffee of the day.
When I walked through the door, I was greeted by old records in the form of stools and hanging lights. To my left sat what must be thousands of different records for sale that were separated by genre, and four listening stations. Posters and advertisements for artists including Wilco and Car Seat Headrest clothed the walls. The theme here was not difficult to decipher.
When I finally made it to the counter, I ordered a small Cappuccino. “Will that be for here or to go?” The barista asked me. “For here, please.” As she rang up my order, she asked me how my day was going. “Not bad,” I replied, and I appreciated her warm hospitality. The barista quickly crafted my Cappuccino and added a Hershey’s kiss on the side for decoration. My drink was strong and delicious.
And while coffee is certainly Songbyrd’s main attraction, the food seemed to be popular too. If you like brunching, and if you live in DC you probably do, Songbyrd has a restaurant area with a fancier ambiance. The record cafe also hosts events, including music trivia and benefit comedy shows.
Songbyrd Music House and Record Cafe offers customers a 2-in-1 experience, combining life’s finest treasures: music and coffee. It’s one of DC’s greatest gems, and one I plan to visit over and over again.
*The Byrds is an American rock band that gained popularity in the mid 1960s with hits including “Turn! Turn! Turn!” and “Eight Miles High.”