Classic New York Jazz Venues
So many of our favorite NYC memories revolve around New York jazz venues, many of which, sadly, are no longer with us. Here are five storied venues you may not have heard of, and some music recorded there that will let you visit any time of day or night!
From 1969-1996, this Greenwich Village institution on University Place was home to some of the most swinging, intimate music on the planet. And with a quiet policy that could get you bounced for talking above a whisper, it’s no wonder you could hear a pin drop between solos! Here’s jazz master Kenny Barron and his trio recorded during the club’s last year in existence.
2. FAT TUESDAY’S
This subterranean East Village club hosted a “Who’s Who” of jazz starting in 1979. It closed its doors in 1995 but not before a slew of ace musicians were able to record there. Check out guitar legend Les Paul with the one and only Tony Bennett there for a taste of what went on below ground nightly.
3. SWEET BASIL
This dearly-departed jazz club closed its doors in 2001, but before doing so it hosted legends and rising stars alike. Check out famed John Coltrane pianist McCoy Tyner from there in 1989.
4. THE BOTTOM LINE
A mecca of jazz, pop, blues and beyond for three decades, this Greenwich Village landmark closed its doors in 2004, but not before hosting everyone from Billy Joel to Bruce Springsteen. Here the colossal saxophonist Sonny Rollins recorded live there in 1993.
5. THE JAZZ STANDARD
For over two decades, this Flatiron staple was a mecca for jazz giants, before closing in 2020. Django favorite the Mingus Big Band won a Grammy Award for their 2011 album recorded there, proof that great music lives and breathes on!