Unless otherwise stated all venues are open daily, charge admission, and have DA.

  1. Kingston Mines

    The largest of Chicago’s blues joints, Kingston Mines packs its Lincoln Park locale with students, young professionals, and a broader spectrum of tourists. Two stages provide non-stop musical entertainment from 8pm to near 4am (5am on Saturdays). Acts range from homegrown house bands to national touring headliners. The kitchen serves up beer-sopping barbecue.

    • 2548 N. Halsted St.

    • 1 773 477 4647

    Kingston Mines
  2. Buddy Guy’s Legends

    A legend himself, bluesman Buddy Guy operates perhaps the best blues club in the city. The South Loop destination draws a mix of students, tourists, and local fans, particularly when Guy himself headlines. The place gets so packed that aisles are marked on the flooring and monitored by bouncers who make sure standing-room-only patrons keep them clear .

    • 754 S. Wabash Ave.

    • 312 427 1190

    Buddy Guy’s Legends
  3. B.L.U.E.S.

    Among Chicago’s many blues clubs, B.L.U.E.S feels the most like a Southern juke joint. Chalk it up to the narrow confines, loud sounds, and sweaty dancers. The club is across the street from the popular Kingston Mines, but it’s a better choice for older, more musically versed blues fans. Better yet, why not stop into both!

    • 2519 N. Halsted St.

    • 1 773 528 1012

  4. Green Mill Cocktail Lounge

    A former Prohibition era speakeasy, Uptown’s landmark Green Mill is a vintage treasure with a sweeping curved bar, vinyl booths, fading murals, and an authentic air of Chicago’s gangster past. The city’s premier jazz talents like Kurt Elling and Patricia Barber regularly play gigs here and Uptown Poetry Slam feature every Sunday. It’s out of the way but every cabbie knows how to get there.

    • 4802 N. Broadway

    • 1 773 878 5552

    • Limited DA

    Green Mill Cocktail Lounge
  5. House of Blues

    Folk art and exotic architectural remnants festoon the funky House of Blues. The vast 1500-seat concert hall presents a variety of national touring acts from hard rock to hip hop in addition to blues. The Sunday gospel brunch with seatings from 9:30am to noon is a must.

    • 329 N. Dearborn St.

    • 312 923 2000

  6. The Velvet Lounge

    The new location for Chicago saxophonist Fred Anderson’s Velvet Lounge offers a less worn-down atmosphere than its former home on S. Indiana Ave., where a wide range of jazz greats played since 1982. However, some of the old features have been retained, such as the chandeliers. Now regulars and an increasing array of new fans populate the club. Sunday nights see regular jam sessions .

  7. Rosa’s

    Though off-the-beaten club path, the family-owned Rosa’s is beloved citywide for its support of local artists such as blues harpist Sugar Blue and the genuine welcome by its owners, Tony Mangiullo and his mother Rosa. The latter sometimes cooks for the patrons of this simple tavern.

  8. Green Dolphin St.

    This slick Northside jazz club offers some of the city’s best sightlines. Named for a jazz standard, Green Dolphin encompasses both a separate fine dining restaurant and an equally spacious showroom that also serves casual café fare. On the musical bill expect the sorts of ensembles that can audibly fill the space, such as big bands and Latin groups.

  9. Blue Chicago

    Popular with tourists, Blue Chicago in River North operates two clubs located two blocks apart. Seats at both venues are few and far between, so come early if you need one, or be prepared to dance. The admission charge covers both clubs, which encourages bar hopping.

  10. Andy’s Jazz Club

    With its musical programming that begins at lunchtime and continues into the evening, Andy’s fills a void for those jazz fans who can’t hold out for the late-night headliners. Prime perches are much sought after at the horseshoe-shaped bar in the no-fuss River North club.

    • 11 E. Hubbard St.

    • 312 642 6805

    Andy’s Jazz Club
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