Small, independent venues ranging from lofts to churches to clubs sprouted in all areas to support the thriving backdrop of this soulful, avant-garde movement. For Boston, jazz was—and still is—more than tuneful melodies that roused the need to dance to it, as it is a tradition of songs that tell the complicated urban existence. Much of the power of the Freedom Movement in the United States has come from this type of music, which is why jazz strengthened people and its rhythms uplifted courage when it began to fail. Boston simply saw jazz as part of its life, and this is seen through some of its most thriving jazz scenes. Scroll down for the best jazz bars in Boston, Massachusetts.
1. The Beehive
Editor's Note: There's no photo available at the time of writing
Situated in The Boston Center for the Arts complex in Boston’s South’s End, The Beehive was hailed as a must-see Boston venue by several prestigious publications including The New York Times. A madly popular Bohemian eatery and bar, this place is an eclectic, funky, yet elegant art space. Here, guests can enjoy delicious food, sumptuous cocktails, and world-class live music every day of the week. Previously rated as one of the “Top 100 Jazz Clubs in the World,” The Beehive boasts a mix of jazz, blues, R&B, Latin, country, cabaret, and burlesque genres. All music is played without gimmicks, thus, offering what is only suited to traditional tastes.
Address: 541 Tremont St, Boston, MA 02116, USA
Website: The Beehive
Opening hours: Mon - Wed: 5pm - 12am; Thu: 5pm - 1am; Fri - 5pm - 2am; Sat: 9:30am - 2am; Sun: 9:30pm - 12am
2. Scullers Jazz Club
Started in 1987, the legendary Scullers Jazz Club has introduced to the public some of the greatest names in straight-ahead, Latin, and contemporary jazz, as well as blues, soul, R&B, and world music. It is known for implementing a new set of standards for jazz clubs in Boston and throughout the United States with a world-class selection of renowned jazz artists. It features great acoustics and sound system in a setting that will remind you of jazz clubs of yesteryears.
Scullers Jazz Club
Address: 400 Soldiers Field Rd, Boston, MA 02134, USA
Website: Scullers Jazz Club
Opening hours: 12pm - 12am (daily)
3. Lucky's Lounge
An obscure pub with no signage upfront, Lucky’s Lounge was established in 2000. It is a great spot and an overall tribute to Sinatra. Moreover, over the years, it has become one of the best venues for live music, great food and drink, and corporate and personal events in the famed Fort Point neighborhood of Boston. Lucky’s Lounge features a variety of both modern and traditional jazz performers, such as DJ Stenzel Washington, The Ron Poster Rio (a group whose music revolves around Frank Sinatra), The Blue Light Bandits, Pat Dowling, Kali Stoddard-Imari, among others.
Address: 355 Congress St, Boston, MA 02210, USA
Website: Lucky’s Lounge
Opening hours: 11:30pm - 2am (daily)
4. Juice And Jazz Cafe
Dorchester’s Juice and Jazz Cafe does so many things well. It has a lot of spaces for guests to relax and lounge in and it provides nurturing meals and culture. Juice and Jazz Cafe sets a balance to its neighborhood that is scattered with unhealthy food options. Aside from its inviting soulful music that constantly plays inside, the sandwiches are named after famous jazz musicians. The Louis Armstrong panini will show guests how wonderful the world is, and the Nina Simone sandwich will definitely leave one feeling good.
Juice And Jazz Cafe
Address: 501B Washington St, Boston, MA 02124, USA
Website: Juice And Jazz Cafe
Opening hours: Mon - Fri: 8am - 4pm; Sat: 8am - 3pm (closed on Sun)
5. Top of the Hub
Top of the Hub is an award-winning restaurant that is 52 floors up, offering amazing skyline views of Boston. It is a sophisticated and elegant restaurant that promises guests the dining experience of a lifetime. Here, one can relax and enjoy a cocktail while listening to live music in the lounge or host an intimate gathering in the main dining room.
Top of the Hub
Address: 800 Boylston St, Boston, MA 02199, USA
Website: Top of the Hub
Opening hours: Mon - Sat: 11:30am - 1am; Sun: 11am - 1am
6. The Bebop
The Bebop was created by the owners of The Burren, one of Boston’s best spots for live music. The Bebop was intended to be a go-to for music lovers. It features an open mic every Monday, where each performer is expected to serenade the audience with a 15-minute song. The Bebop also has a classical open mic during Saturdays, which is hosted by Neave Trio.
Address: 1116 Boylston St, Boston, MA 02215, USA
Website: The Bebop
Opening hours: Mon - Fri: 11am - 1am; Sat - Sun: 9am - 1am
7. Wally's Cafe
Established in 1947, Wally’s Cafe is one of the oldest family-run jazz clubs in existence today. Aside from providing a venue for live music, it is also a great place to get some music education. There are usually performances by up-and-coming musicians who are some of the best in the region. It is dedicated to being a platform for musicians and a place for the music-loving community to come together.
Address: 427 Massachusetts Ave, Boston, MA 02118, USA
Website: Wally’s Cafe
Opening hours: 5pm - 1:30am (daily)
8. Slades Bar & Grill
Slades Bar & Grill has a rich history of bringing the Greater Boston communities together under one roof since 1935. It takes pride in a familiar and familial feel with a funky, soulful vibe. Known for its support of black history and soul, Slades Bar & Grill sports a variety of nightly entertainment, including Calloway’’s 30+ Saturdays series, Wednesday night comedy shows hosted by Jonathan Gates, and Monday night football viewing. During Tuesdays, old school tunes are anchored by pianist Frank Wilkins and his WeJazzUp band.
Slades Bar & Grill
Address: 958 Tremont St, Boston, MA 02120, USA
Website: Slades Bar & Grill
Opening hours: Tue - Sat: 11:30am - 2am; Sun: 12pm - 9pm (closed on Mon)
9. Les Zygomates
Les Zygomates is a well-known bistro that is treasured for its friendly atmosphere, amazing cuisine, and great music. It has been in existence since 1994 and has since offered French and Italian wines and more than 50 other varieties of wine from around the world. It has a big dining area that can accommodate up to 150 people, and another 50 in its private area dining room. Aside from its famed wine collection, Les Zygomates boasts a lively music culture, offering jazz and blues performances to come with every dining experience during Monday through Saturday evenings.
Address: 129 South St, Boston, MA 02111, USA
Website: Les Zygomates
Opening hours: Mon: 11:30am - 9pm; Tue - Thu: 11:30am - 10pm; Fri: 11:30am - 11pm; Sat: 5:30pm - 11pm (closed on Sun)
10. Darryl's Corner Bar and Kitchen
Darryl’s Corner Bar and Kitchen is all about jazz, jazz, and jazz. This place has all the music when it comes to delivering live tunes on the weekdays, especially on Tuesdays when the atmosphere at Darryl’s does its best impression of the old school New Orleans soul. Speaking of soul, this joint is known for its comfort food classics that fit perfectly with its Tuesday night jazz beat, providing just as much culinary satisfaction as it does that be-bop jazz backbeat.
Darryl's Corner Bar and Kitchen
Address: 604 Columbus Ave, Boston, MA 02118, USA
Website: Darryl’s Corner Bar and Kitchen
Opening hours: Fri: 4pm - 2am; Sat: 10am - 10pm; Tue - Thu: 5pm - 12am (closed on Mon)
Boston jazz in all its forms
There is no shortage of live music here. Bars, cafes, restaurants, pubs, and lounges all feature some form of live music on their busy and packed weekend business nights. Truly, Boston offers you jazz in all its forms!
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