1. L’Arbuci

    A well-established favourite, in the heart of St-Germain, attracting a good mix of regular locals and curious tourists. Eat in the pleasant brasserie upstairs, then head to the basement for some old-fashioned Dixie-style jazz.

    • 25 rue de Buci, 75006

  2. Au Duc des Lombards

    The Left Bank may be the traditional home of jazz clubs but this sleek, modern club is firmly on the Right Bank, in the Les Halles district. The memorabilia of the “greats” who played here may have disappeared during refurbishment but the club’s policy is still to bring in the best overseas jazz artists to play alongside home-grown talent. Good food is served day and night.

    • 42 rue des Lombards, 75001

  3. Baiser Salé

    Jazz, blues, Latin and African music are the mainstays at this tiny cellar club, which is low on space but high on volume. The Baiser was promoting World Music long before the phrase had been invented, and the eclectic approach has led to a relaxed and friendly atmosphere. It’s cheaper than many clubs, too.

    • 58 rue des Lombards, 75001

  4. Le Bilboquet

    There’s a great sense of history in this revered jazz club. It first opened its doors in 1947, since which time legends including Miles Davis and Billie Holiday have performed here. Today, however, it’s mostly local talent that you will see on stage. As well as music, there’s also a relaxing bar and restaurant.

    • 13 rue St-Benoît, 75006

    Le Bilboquet
  5. Autour de Midi et de Minuit

    Halfway up La Butte, this atmospheric joint has added some welcome buzz to the slopes of Montmartre. It’s jazz all the way, mostly swing but some modern jazz as well, performed in a vaulted cellar below the excellent bistro.

    • 11 rue Lepic, 75018

  6. Jazz Club Lionel Hampton

    The jazz club par excellence actually serves up a wider range of music than its name suggests. Check what’s on as you might get blues, rock or even gospel music. There’s a heavy emphasis on visiting African-American musicians (Oscar Peterson has played here). A sophisticated experience.

    Hôtel Le Méridien-Étoile

    • 81 blvd Gouvion-St-Cyr, 75017

  7. New Morning

    An upstart by Paris standards, having opened in 1981. Its policy of embracing all kinds of music (jazz, blues, Latin, soul and the unclassifiable), not to mention inviting performers up from the floor, has led to a relaxed crowd of regulars.

    • 7–9 rue des Petites-Ecuries, 75010

  8. Le Petit Journal Montparnasse

    The club that barely sleeps – the doors close at 2am, but open up again four hours later. You can just drink, or have a meal while listening to the live music, which is mainly big band jazz but on some nights takes in salsa, blues or rock.

    • 13 rue du Commandant-Mouchotte, 75014

  9. Le Petit Journal St-Michel

    Younger brother of the Montparnasse original, this club opened in 1971 and concentrates more on New Orleans-style swinging jazz. A fun atmosphere in this Latin Quarter cellar, together with a pleasant dining room in which to have a meal, just off the main stage area.

    • 71 blvd St-Michel, 75005

  10. Caveau de la Huchette

    Don’t be fooled by its tourist-trap setting in the heart of the Latin Quarter – this venue is worth every penny of the entrance price. The building was once home to the Knights Templar, and jazz has been played under the medieval vaults since 1947.

    • 5 rue de la Huchette, 75005

Top 10 Musical Artistes in Paris

  1. Edith Piaf

    Discovered as a street singer in Paris, the diminutive Piaf (1915–63) became known as the “Little Sparrow”.

  2. Maurice Chevalier

    The Parisian singer/actor (1888–1972) is, for many, the voice of France. In 1958 he won an Academy Award for his role in Gigi.

  3. Django Reinhardt

    Belgian gypsy guitarist Reinhardt (1910–53) first found fame in Paris in collaboration with Stephane Grappelli.

  4. Lionel Hampton

    US bandleader Hampton (b. 1909) regularly played in the Left Bank jazz clubs.

  5. Sidney Bechet

    US jazz virtuoso Bechet (1897–1959) settled in Paris in the 1940s and wrote his great tune “Les Oignons” in 1949.

  6. Jacques Brel

    Belgian singer/songwriter Brel (1929–78) moved to Paris in 1953, where audiences loved his melancholy songs.

  7. Stephane Grappelli

    Paris-born Grappelli (1908– 97) studied classical violin, but later innovatively adapted the instrument to jazz.

  8. Josephine Baker

    The African-American dancer (1906–75) gained notoriety for dancing semi-nude at the Folies-Bergère.

  9. Miles Davis

    US trumpet-player Davis (1926–91) was a favourite in Paris for his “cool jazz” style.

  10. Coleman Hawkins

    US bebop saxophonist Hawkins (1904–69) played Paris many times in the 1930s.

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