In search of a new favorite spot to hear live jazz and blues? Hoodline crunched the numbers to find the top venues for jazz and blues around Chicago, using both Yelp data and their own secret sauce to produce a ranked list.
1. Bandera Restaurant
First up is Bandera Restaurant, situated at 535 N. Michigan Ave. (between Ohio Street and Grand Avenue). With four stars out of 1,630 reviews on Yelp, the jazz, blues and New American spot on the Mag Mile has proven to be a local favorite.
Live jazz music can be heard nightly, and a dress code applies in the dining room. On the menu, offerings include house-smoked salmon, grilled artichoke, barbecue chicken and beef combos and prime rib steak. Check out the full menu here.
“The jazz trio played some cool music and the volume was perfect for enjoyment of the music and conversing with friends. The food and service were superb!” wrote Yelper Jeb B., who reviewed Bandera on July 24.
Lincoln Park’s B.L.U.E.S., located at 2519 N. Halsted St., is another top choice, with Yelpers giving the bar, music venue and jazz and blues spot 4.5 stars out of 247 reviews.
This adults-only bar boasts a friendly and intimate atmosphere where every seat is a good one. B.L.U.E.S. is open seven days a week and starts serving drinks at 7 p.m. Music starts promptly at 9:30 p.m. Visit the website for a complete list of upcoming artists.
3. Green Mill
Green Mill, a lounge and jazz and blues spot in Uptown, is another go-to, with four stars out of 823 Yelp reviews. Head over to 4802 N. Broadway (at West Lawrence Avenue) to see for yourself.
This spot combines live music with a number of libations. Grab a table and order a craft or international draught beer, glass of wine or cocktail. Upcoming shows include the Dee Alexander Quartet on Aug. 10 at 9 p.m. and the Patricia Barber Trio on Aug. 13 at 9 p.m. Check out the full line of performances here.
4. Kingston Mines
Over in Lincoln Park, check out Kingston Mines, which has earned four stars out of 508 reviews on Yelp. You can find the jazz and blues spot at 2548 N. Halsted St. Founded in 1968, the establishment says it is “the largest and oldest continuously operating blues club in Chicago,” per its website.
Kingston Mines pairs snackables like sweet potato fries, mozzarella sticks and chicken strips with a variety of beer, wine and signature cocktails. Stop by on Aug. 11 at 7 p.m. to see Shawn Holt and the Teardrops or Aug. 14 at 7:30 p.m. for Joanna Connor.
5. Jazz Showcase
Last but not least, there’s Jazz Showcase, a South Loop favorite with 4.5 stars out of 150 reviews. Stop by 806 S. Plymouth Court at the historic Dearborn Station building to hit up the jazz and blues spot next time you’re looking for a night out. This 170-seat venue has been open since 1947.
Upcoming performances include the Gary Bartz Quartet on Aug. 9 at 8 p.m. and the Sharel Cassity Quartet on Aug. 17 at 8 p.m. Live shows occur every night and family-friendly matinee music starts at 4 p.m. Check out the website for more information and a full line of performances.
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