Northwest Philadelphia: Five Venues Where You Can Hear Jazz

Looking for a live music performance without traveling into Center City?

Philadelphia is a city steeped in jazz tradition and Germantown Avenue is rich in history and in the arts with numerous places along the avenue to experience amazing concerts and events. Here are just a few.

Club La Rose
5531 Germantown Ave.

Stop by the club every Monday for performances by Germantown’s Tony Williams Band or every first Thursday of the month to hear the Jack Saint Clair Orchestra.

Characterized by a spacious room and large, audience-level stage, La Rose leaves room for dancing and singing by the performers and audience alike.

Speak with Verna Edwards if you’d like to play and she might give you the microphone for a song or two. The audience and bands will make you feel like family.


The Mermaid Inn
7673 Germantown Ave.

The Mermaid Inn is a lively and energetic venue with weekly performances by popular Philadelphia bands including The Sacred Cowboys, Stevie and the Bluescasters, Roger Learnard Band and the Dukes of Destiny. Other musicians come to enjoy each other’s shows, creating a home base for area artists.

The Inn’s second-generation ownership has transformed the Mermaid into an intimate venue with the space to pack in a crowd, and small a dining room for those who want to sit and enjoy food and drinks to the side.

Performances are held most regularly on Saturday nights, but full schedules can be found online.


Rollers at Flying Fish8142 Germantown Ave.

This spot is a popular place for live music. The atmosphere is friendly and inviting. While you dine, you can watch live performances. The menu consists of a variety of American dishes and plenty of seafood options.

The restaurant is currently closed since chef and owner, Paul Roller, had knee surgery, but performances will begin again soon after his recovery.


Paris Bistro and Jazz Cafe
8229 Germantown Ave.

If you’re looking for a snazzy little spot to explore French classics and listen to jazz music, travel to the Paris Bistro and Jazz Cafe, located in Chestnut Hill.

The 1930’s era Bistro is open seven days per week. Once you walk towards the back of the restaurant, descend down the narrow staircase into a low lit jazz cafe with rich red leather furniture, velvet upholstery, an ornate mirrored wall, dark wood trim and an intimate atmosphere. There, you can listen to some of Philadelphia’s hottest jazz musicians.

Grab a cozy table, select from the classic bistro menu or sit at the bar and enjoy this smooth jazz experience.

Live music is offered during dinner hours Thursday through Sunday.


Tavern on the Hill
8636 Germantown Ave.

After walking past boutiques, shops and galleries, step into the Tavern on the Hill.

The old pub has been transformed into a charming tavern, a lovely place to grab some great food and hear  live music. The tavern is open seven days per week.

This hidden gem has a great selection of beers, wines and spirits. Every Friday night during evening dining hours, the Tavern features live jazz music.

Text and images by Drui Caldwell and Margo Reed.

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