New York is the world's capital of jazz (and hip-hop!). Club names sound like legendary performances and key moments in the evolution of this music. Many of its greatest musicians live in New York and perform there regularly, whether "historical" or avant-garde. The jazz enthusiast has something to make you feel dizzy and make you spend a few sleepless nights after having read the weekly concert program... Amateur or novice, it would be a shame to leave the Big Apple without having spent a night in the clubs'darkness. We have selected exceptional establishments, whether the must-visits or the landmarks of young talents. Enough to make you thrill for some good evenings... We advise you to learn about club programming, prices (variables, but rarely go beyond US$ 50 to US$ 20) and sets schedules (variables too). It is also possible to book with clubs.
As for the classics, the Blue Note and the Village Vanguard in the West Village are the two most famous jazz clubs in the world (they are also expensive and stormed by tourists). The famous jazzmen gave some of their most famous performances and recorded live. Coltrane, Monk, Evans, Rollins... The programming of these rooms, impeccable, always rimes with great class. Other clubs, smaller, are high places of the vanguard: Fat Cat, open very late in the night, offers intensive and fevered jam-sessions where renowned talents and young musicians on the way to make their names are combined.
Iridium is also on the list of clubs you can visit with your eyes closed. The Birdland remains magical, even if it has a slight decrease. The Jazz at Lincoln Center, managed by Wynton Marsalis, also highlights the great era of jazz in a more institutional setting. Other selection: the Smoke, where glorious 40sand 50scome to delight the public every weekend.
For a more innovative journey, head to the Knitting Factory, the major place of counter-culture, which moved to Brooklyn.
© Dominique Auzias & Jean-Paul Labourdette