From Jelly Roll Morton to Luis Armstrong and even Luis Prima, New Orleans has had its fair share of Jazz greats. So many prominent Jazz artists have called New Orleans home that the Big Easy is now widely hailed as the birthplace of Jazz. Even today, this great city is still an international hotbed for great Jazz music, and any trip to New Orleans wouldn’t be complete without the attendance of at least one great impromptu Jazz session.
Fortunately, in the Big Easy, live music is as ubiquitous as good food, and hearing some foot-stomping brass emanating out of a corner bar is as easy as popping in and grabbing a Po-Boy. That being said, there are some favorite spots if you’re in the mood to catch just Jazz.
Frenchmen Street, at the corner of the French Quarter and bordering the now famous Treme is a hotbed of great Jazz music. In this two-block stretch you’ll find handfuls of great bars and live-music joints (D.B.A. and The Spotted Cat, to name two) and admission is often free (or at least cheap), and you’ll find locals bouncing form club to club with a “To-Go” beer in their hands.
Another great dinner and drinks spot is the Bombay Club over on 830 Conti Street in the adjoining French Quarter. This casual fine-dining and drinks spot is a great date spot, offers nightly Jazz, and Zagat referenced as “a civilized class act in the heart of the French Quarter.” Not small praise and a trip here is definitely the start or end to a perfect night on the town.
The House of Blues on 225 Decatur is perhaps New Orleans premiere music venue. Though here you can catch all types of acts, The House of Blues is a staple of New Orleans as much as is Café Du Monde around the corner. Check local listings for Jazz greats frequenting this tucked away iconic venue.