So many highlights of this neighborhood can be boasted about, praised, read about. And local jazz is one of those. Park 79 Hotel is not only located on a great corner, but it is also at the very heart of a neighborhood populated by jazz corners–dining, cocktails, good draughts, weekend brunch, late night mellowing. The circle leads west from Park 79 Hotel along Broadway, going south to Columbus Circle, north to Morningside Heights. Harlem then takes over, the absolute heart of jazz. Next day, try going north along Amsterdam Avenue, some new “joints” have opened and offer jazz and rock.
And…warm, sunny weekends in Central Park — lots of impromptu groups stir the scene.
presents its music for everyone. Wynton Marsalis has created one of the world’s great jazz music venues, including Dizzy’s Coca Cola Club for late night, very moderate cost performances. Your good-weather visit to Central Park will always find ad hoc jazz and folk groups entertaining everyone—and it’s total happiness. Here are some “joints” you’ll want to include during your Big Apple stay.
A quick ride on the #1, then #2 or #3 subway–from 79th Street to 110th or 125th streets. Jazz overflows in Harlem, with a decent selection as well on The Upper West Side. Brunch, evenings, late nights–here is jazz heaven, with every jazz origin. Full bar service, weekend brunch, Deep South, Latin, Continental dining choices. Gospel services on Sunday.
Yes, this is the National Jazz Museum in Harlem, an affiliate of the Smithsonian National Museums. Terrific events and performances through the year. And some worthwhile souvenirs
UPPER WEST SIDE:
Smoke Jazz Club: Fried chicken and smooth jazz ‘n blues can’t do much better than this UWS club. Small space and expect an entertainment charge ($20-$40), food/drink minimum, especially on a Friday/Saturday night. But Smoke feels like an old-world jazz joint—elegant and mellow. Reserve in advance, sells out fast on popular evenings. #1 subway, 103 St.
Historic brownstone belongs to Ashford & Simpson. Mellow jazz, great food, often sit with celebs. 254 West 72nd St. is a beautiful stroll from Park 79 Hotel.
Never a cover charge, new on the scene or seasoned pros, they all play here; open mic, late night jam sessions–$10 minimum! Park 79 guests can walk along Broadway to 93rd St. or the #1 subway to 96 St.
Columbus Avenue restaurants sometimes feature jazz, but more so rock music. Of course, Midtown and Greenwich Village jazz spots are an easy subway ride downtown. And…the tours! So many choices.