The 5 Best Gypsy Jazz Bars in Paris
If you want to hear Gypsy Jazz in Paris, you’re in luck: it’s alive and well there today. The swinging sound is not going anywhere and we’ve put together a list of 5 venues in the French capital where you can listen to the music made famous by Django Reinhardt and Stéphane Grappelli.
This bar, as unassuming as it is from the outside with chintzy neon and a narrow facing, makes a bold claim: it is the temple of manouche jazz. But as bold as that claim may sound, it is also true.
The bar hosted Django Reinhardt concerts for decades, and continues the tradition in its small venue. Over the years, their dedication to the music has expanded. They now host a jazz school, a recording studio, and a guitar workshop in the floors above the storied bar.
Sitting between quaint shops on the Rue de Rosiers, it makes for a great place to centre an entire afternoon around. Then, linger long into the night to the sounds of gypsy jazz as you take in the city and the music that it gave birth to.
This gem of the Mouzaïa district makes for a cozy little den of Latin and gypsy jazz. The low ceilings and proximity to the performers creates the exact atmosphere one imagines Parisians experienced in the 30’s when musicians first started sprinkling gypsy scales into their swing.
The bistro sits in the Campagne à Paris, a working class neighbourhood no more than a couple train stops off the classic Paris tour. While a bit of a trip to get there, the complete lack of tourists and the energy of the neighbourhood feed into an authentic experience. The cramped interior and reputation as a favourite venue for musicians means intimacy and focus on the music.
Aux Petit Joueurs is the place to go if you are looking for charm, wine, and great music on the genuine side of Parisian life.
If you are looking for a great jazz club inside of a labyrinthine, centuries-old building rumoured to have been used by occultists and that boasts an incredible musical legacy, then you have very specific tastes. And they are all satisfied by Caveau de la Huchette.
When first stepping inside, you will see why the venue leaves such an impression on its visitors, leading to a copycat club being built in England. The eerie tunnels and medieval stone walls are worth seeing alone. The building was constructed in the 1500’s and converted to a club after World War II.
Graced by the likes of Art Blakey and Count Basie, among countless other jazz notables, it is a classic venue worth seeing. Set in the Latin Quarter, with its many universities, expect a younger crowd to share the night with.
Just off of a train stop, this cafe has a cute outcropping with street seating and, of course, frequent jazz performances. Many visitors come for the coffee, sitting to watch traffic slip by, spending time in the city to the relaxing music that drifts out from the inside.
This is a convenient choice with a Paris-from-the-posters aesthetic. Make sure to swing by Friday nights for jazz programming.
This annual festival is a must visit for swing and gypsy jazz fans, only a short bus ride away from Paris in Samois-sur-Seine. Held every summer in June and July, Festival Django Reinhardt is a multi-day arts and culture mecca.
What began as a one-off event in 1968 became a yearly pilgrimage in the eighties. When swing revived in the nineties, organisers expanded it to five days. With the expansion of the festival came an easing on genre constrictions. Now, you can expect funk, fusion, and flamenco to share the stage as well.
Your 5 gypsy jazz concert options
We hope this helps you figure out where you can hear the best gypsy jazz in Paris! If you want to learn more about this style of music – sometimes also also called Jazz Manouche, Sinti Jazz or Jazz Gitane, why not head over to our profiles of some of the gypsy jazz greats.