Tuesday, November 30, 2010

The Upcoming Week in Paris Jazz bars and clubs

Some new artists and some heavyweights appearing in the upcoming week or so in Paris jazz bars.  If these don't interest you then check out the complete club listings for more options!

At Sunset/Sunside, right in the heart of the city, on a lovely pedestrian street on the right bank there are some nice acts this week.  On Friday night, at 10pm, Nico Wayne Toussaint, the French blues singer and harmonica player is performing (should be a nice way to end a cold friday with some hot blues)  Here's Nico playing some particularly down and dirty harmonica

And on Saturday night as part of their 'New Sounds' fest, Brice Martin and Claude Bartholomy are shaking up the downstairs at Sunset with some outside vocal and sax sounds

Monday, November 29, 2010

Blue Indigo - Jazz in Paris at the Quai Branly Museum

Jazz in Paris from around the world

Le Quai Branly is a wonderful new museum on the left bank.  One more example of new  cutting edge architecture for the city.  They specialize in exhibiting world cultures and the interior is a treat to wander through - it's a maze of rooms and alleys and interiors that make you feel like you are discovering the different worlds.  And, in Spring the little park in front is a welcome retreat from the bustle of the city.  This season they are presenting a jazz series that is a welcome change from the regular jazz venues and jazz cafes around town.

Over the course of the 2010-2011 season they are presenting a series they call Blue Indigo, a season of concerts that symbolically retraces the original roads through the Deep South (with John Hebert’s Byzantine Monkey, Matana Roberts’ Coin Coin) to the East Coast (Tyshawn Sorey Quartet, Steve Lehman Octet, Craig Taborn, William Parker & Gerald Cleaver Trio), and the Midwest (Mike Reed’s People, Places & Things, Chicago Underground Duo).

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Jazz Radio in Paris

Jazz Radio Stations in Paris

the supreme radio station in Paris for jazz fans is TSF, which used to be a communist station until it was bought in 1999 by Frank Tenot & Jean-Francois Bizot. their playlist tends towards the great standards, but keep an ear open at 8pm Monday to Friday, when programming manager Sebastien Vidal interviews a who's-who of Paris players & visitors.

in the morning, catch excellent historic recordings and stories from former France Musique director Pierre Bouteiller...on TSF every weekday morning at 9am for the rare early-rising jazz enthusiast!

So, while you're getting ready to go out, here are some excellent radio shows to tune into when you're in Paris:

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Paris Jazz celebrates the late lamented Albert Ayler - Dec 2nd

If you want to step out of the regular Paris jazz clubs and jazz bars and see some live jazz in Paris in a wonderful space then check out this event at the contemporary art museum 'Le Fondation Cartier'

Albert Ayler (July 13, 1936 – November 25, 1970) was an American avant-garde jazz saxophonist, singer and composer.

Ayler was among the most primal of the free jazz musicians of the 1960s; critic John Litweiler wrote that "never before or since has there been such naked aggression in jazz" He possessed a deep blistering tone—achieved by using the stiff plastic Fibrecane no. 4 reeds on his tenor saxophone—and used a broad, pathos-filled vibrato.  On Dec 2nd, at 8pm (for the cost of only 7.50 euros) the Fondation Cartier in Paris will be holding an 'hommage' to the memory and music of Albert Ayler.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Our List of the Best Jazz Bars and Clubs in Paris

Our complete list of Jazz Clubs in Paris.  Where to hear the best live jazz musicians in Paris.  From A to Z with all Paris Jazz Clubs

Some of these venues are famous Paris jazz bars, some of these places are down and dirty Paris jazz clubs. The opinions here are entirely ours. PLEASE send us your comments to help us keep things up-to-date. (also, if you have any suggestions how to get the accents for our French words working correctly, we're all ears.)

L'Archipel: 17 blvd de Strasbourg 10th, Metro Chateau d’Eau Does double service as a cinema...which means the chairs are comfy, but there's no room to dance (or drink). Two rooms (the blue and the red), and one cheerful ticket-taker. Entrance 9-15 euros.

Atelier Charonne: 21 rue de Charonne 11th,, Metro Bastille or Ledru Rollin. Focus on jazz Manouche. Free, straight-up shows that start some time after 8:30pm.

Autour de Midi...et Minuit: 11 rue Lepic 18th, Metro Blanche Entrance varies (free to about 10 euros.)

Baiser Sale: 58 rue des Lombards 1st, Metro Chatelet Upstairs from the tiny bar and terrasse, there's a nice-sized room for jams and bands. Almost always worth a visit. (price range usually 10 to 20 euros)

Babilo (alt Bab-ilo): 9 rue du Baigneur, 18th,, Metro Jules Joffrin. Weekend jazz, including Sunday 6:30pm jam sessions (kinda Brazilian, so I hear, though i haven't gotten there yet myself.)

Thursday, November 18, 2010

A 'just outside Paris' jazz club event - Tuesday Nov 23

And this is a ‘just outside of Paris’ jazz club in a totally cool space.  As Paris becomes ever more expensive artists and musicians and whole festivals are moving just past the borders of the city - like Williamsburg in NYC (..perhaps not quite as 'cool' as Williamsburg, but you get the idea...) So the north-east suburbs of Montreuil and Pantin are becoming slowly filled with artists and artisans and new theatre and music spaces - the artists are, (as one of my favourite pieces of graffiti once said) 'the shock troops of gentrification'.

The aptly named Banlieu Blues fest presents in November a festival of jazz and blues just outisde Paris - Dynamo (La Dynamo de Banlieu Bleus – which wonderfully translates as something like THE DYNAMO OF SUBURBAN BLUES!).  There will be wine and maybe food if you get there early....

Monday, November 15, 2010

This week in Paris Jazz Clubs - a rainy November in Live Jazz in Paris

Well, I'm going with this concert as the one to see this week.  An all out marathon of jazz and jazzy players at the  historic (well, 10 years old historic...) Le Triton  this Saturday, Nov 20th, from 4pm to 2am the next morning.  It's a nice, intimate space (not so much a Paris Jazz Bar, but a real Jazz Club) where you'll feel part of the action and where the crowd will be regulars of the venue and supporters of the little record label they have.  

It is just outside of the walls of Paris.  But if you plan it right then you can also take advantage of the trip to visit historic Belleville.  Get off the Metro at 'Belleville' or 'Goncourt' and then walk uphill for a few blocks before getting back on at 'Jordain' to head out to 'Mairie des Lilas'.  If the weather is nice then make a side trip over to see the view over Paris from the lovely 'Parc de Belleville' and have a glass of wine on the terrace of the Mer a Boire.  I can't imagine a nicer way to spend a Saturday afternoon.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

The Best Bar in ...

A quick non-Paris amazing jazz club note -

I have been on the road on the other side of the water for the last three weeks.  From New York City to New Orleans and back via Memphis, Nashville and Detroit.  Making music and also just some touring around.  Got stuck in Detroit (sadly broke an axle on my 1964 Skylark

just outside Toledo.... so I got a tow truck to take me up to Detroit).

I toughed it out by booking myself into the fabulous newly renovated Book Cadillac hotel

and and spent 3 days wandering around the surreal dying city

checking out the amazing music scene.  And I stumbled into the best Jazz bar in Detroit.  Cliff Bell's. 

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Must See! Saturday Night Cool - Lee Konitz headlines in one of my favourite Paris Jazz Clubs

If you're looking for a great experience watching live jazz in Paris or visiting one of the many live jazz clubs and bars in Paris then I would advice you check out a concert this Saturday night (November 13th at 8pm, 25 euros) at Sunset/Sunside  - one of my favourite jazz bars in the city.  

Lee Konitz and Dan Tepfer

Lee is generally considered one of the driving forces of Cool Jazz, and one of the few altoists to retain a distinctive sound in the 40s, when Charlie Parker exercised a tremendous influence on other players.

Konitz began his professional career in 1945 with the Teddy Powell band as a replacement for Charlie Ventura. The engagement apparently did not start out smoothly, as Ventura is said to have banged his head against a wall when Konitz played.

In 1949 he teamed up with the Miles Davis group for one or two weeks and again in 1950 to record Birth of the Cool. Konitz has stated that he considered the group to belong to Gerry Mulligan, and credits Lennie Tristano as the true forebearer of "the cool".

In the early 1950s, Konitz recorded and toured with Stan Kenton's orchestra. In 1961, he recorded Motion with Elvin Jones on drums and Sonny Dallas on bass. This spontaneous session, widely regarded as a classic, consisted entirely of standards. The loose trio format aptly featured Konitz's unorthodox phrasing and chromaticism.

Konitz has been quite prolific, recording dozens of albums as a band leader. He has also recorded or performed with Dave Brubeck, Ornette Coleman, Charles Mingus, Gerry Mulligan, Elvin Jones and others.

Monday, November 08, 2010


OK, it's not Paris Jazz Clubs and it's not about live Jazz in Paris - but it's amazing.  This video kills me everytime I watch it..... so I'm posting it again so everyone can see it...again and again....  You understand after this how Louis Armstrong was not only an amazing innovator in jazz instrumental styles, but an extraordinary innovator in vocal stylings.