The 4 Best Jazz Clubs NYC – The Greats, Ranked!

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Jazz music is integral to New York City. Jazz fans have flocked to a range of jazz clubs in the city for decades and they continue to do so.

New York has a thriving jazz scene, and, hey, thank goodness for that.

In this blog, we want to pay homage to these famous jazz clubs that make up the backbone of the thriving jazz history in NYC. To do so, we are going to give you our Best Jazz Clubs NYC for incredible live jazz in the city.

Make it a bucket list or to-do list if you wish. Ready? Let's dive in.

1. Blue Note Jazz Club

The Blue Note Jazz Club is a jazz venue in Greenwich, New York City. It was founded in the 80s and continues to be a popular jazz room until this day.

This venue is probably the most famous jazz club in New York and so, of course, it had to make the number one position in our list. It is also known to be one of the most expensive clubs in the city so if you are planning a visit, make sure your budget is in order.

You can catch international and local artists playing in this jazz corner every night of the week, with brunch performances on Sunday.

There is a restaurant, a full bar, and a calendar filled with top-class artists and jazz musicians ready to perform for you.

The best jazz room in NYC? We think so.

Blue Note Jazz Club

Image credit: Instagram

2. Best Jazz Clubs NYC: Mezzrow Jazz Club 

Mezzrow is another Greenwich addition to the jazz community. Sister to Smalls Jazz Club, this live music venue is small and intimate, with a huge following in the jazz capital of the States.

The most intimate jazz club we have on our list, this spot is perfect if you like to be close and cuddly with the other people around you. The experience here is a real authentic taste of New York's vintage jazz scene and the jazz performances you can witness here are second to none.

Famous for its cocktails and modern jazz, this club should be top of any New York jazz recommendation list. As long as you don't mind bumping some elbows with the fellow jazz fanatics around.

If you are in the city and you want to witness a classic, authentic jazz experience, this is the spot for you. You won't forget it, that's for sure.

Mezzrow Jazz Club

Image credit: Facebook

3. Smalls Jazz Club

For another New York jazz club in the same family, we have Smalls Jazz Club up next. This club was established in the 1990s and since then has developed an incredible reputation in the world of modern jazz. It is a spot where typically non-famous but brilliantly talented jazz musicians play and it has become one of the most famous jazz clubs in the city.

Smalls is an underground piano bar with a small capacity. Compared to other jazz clubs in the area, this addition to our list certainly appears understated from the outside. You might even walk past it without realising the notoriety it has in the jazz world.

But to truly immerse yourself in New York's jazz culture, you might never find a better place to do it than Smalls.

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Smalls Jazz Club

Image credit: Flickr/Zhang Yu

4. Rockwood Music Hall

Rockwood Music Hall is the most modern club on our list. It has only been on the scene since 2005 and so is a newcomer amongst jazz greats.

However. in that short time the jazz gallery has made an incredible name for itself even in a scene of pre-existing great jazz clubs.

This venue has 3 separate stages, all of which host incredible jazz shows every day of the week, with both sitting and standing options. Moving up a little from the tiny, intimate stages we have seen so far, this jazz club allows a little more wiggle room than the rest.

Rockwood is known for finding and launching new artists. If you see a live show here, chances are you have just witnessed the start of an amazing career.

Is anything better than watching music history take place right in front of your eyes? We don't think so. And with that, our little list is finished!

We hope you enjoyed this list of our favourite jazz clubs in NYC! If you ever get the chance to go to any of these spots and listen to the jazz musicians for yourself, you will send us some photos, right?

Rockwood Music Hall
Hermillis H.
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