Some of the world’s best jazz clubs in New York City. For jazz fans, there are plenty of places in the city that play live music, but just which ones do you choose?
Well, here are the top jazz clubs in the city, from Manhattan to Brooklyn.
Birdland, Hell’s Kitchen
Birdland’s performers range from the greats, including Kurt Elling and Joe Lovano, to excellent new artists like Aaron Neville and John Pizzarelli. Located among Times Square’s neon lights, this venue is at the heart of jazz resurgence in midtown.
Birdland is also noted for its in-residence bands, with Sundays belonging to the wonderful Afro-Latin Jazz Orchestra.
Blue Note, Greenwich Village
Jazz capital of the world. That’s what the Blue Note calls itself, and it certainly makes a point. With hot up-and-comers like Brooklyn’s soul artist Phony PPL performing on the same stage as titans like McCoy Tyner and Chick Corea, this place is where the jazz is at. For the best bargain bets, head there during the late-night weekend sets, or during the Sunday brunches.
Dizzy’s Club Coca-Cola, Upper West Side
Lincoln Center’s jazz arm is located high atop the Time Warner Center, just a few blocks away from its main campus. It has three rooms, with the Rose Theater being a midsize space. The gems, however, are the Allen Room, and the tiny Dizzy’s Club Coca-Cola, with its stages framed by gigantic windows over Columbus Circle.
It has a certain cinematic feel to it – this jazz club could be right out of the scenes of any movie set in the ’20s. And of course, it was home to some of the top talents in the business, including the artistic director of Jazz at Lincoln Center, Wynton Marsalis.
Ibeam Brooklyn, Gowanu
Ibeam’s subtle steel door sets the tone for this cozy little space adorned by gorgeous art. An affordable alternative to some of New York’s pricier jazz joints, it has some of the most progressive players in the NYC scene. For Avant-jazzers, there’s no better option than this.
Nublu Classic, East Village
X marks the spot, X being a solitary blue light. You may wonder if you’re in the right location at first, but there will be no doubt once you’re inside. With avant-garde acts like Wax Poetic by owner Ilhan Ersahin, as well as offbeat jazz, you’re in for an interesting musical night. Wednesdays also showcase incredible live Brazilian music and dancing.
Smalls, West Village
For that authentic jazz experience, head over to Smalls. A small and cozy space, it feels more like a speakeasy that does a club and features some classic hard bop coupled with contemporary and experimental jazz.
Smoke Jazz & Supper Club, Upper West Side
With its plush carpeting, comfortable sofas, and low-lit chandeliers, you’ll feel like you have talent right in your living room. The bookings include hot young local musicians, as well as the greats, including Harold Mabern and Nicholas Payton.
If you’re a jazz enthusiast, you’re spoiled for choice. Take your pick!