4 SF blues and jazz clubs you must visit

No matter what modern tunes are turning heads on Billboard charts at the moment, blues and jazz clubs are a reliable go-to when you’re looking for something impressive, romantic and easygoing. Drink in smooth tunes and drinks for a big night out while still retaining some semblance of sophistication.

When words can get in the way, follow the call of a thumping double bass laying it down beneath perked up horn sections, meandering guitar solos and unpredictable drum hits coalescing into a soothing sonic maze. The following SF stages host parades of blues and jazz beats to help take the pressure off and wrap you and your company in the warm blanket of the ultimate language of love and fun. And just like that music on hand, your night may turn out to be an improvisational success.  

Check out more blues and jazz clubs in the East Bay.

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Mr. Tipple’s Recording Studio is SF’s discreet mid-Market gem known for craft cocktails as tasteful as the live jazz seven nights a week. Small in size but big in impact, the speakeasy-style club nestled off Van Ness boasts plenty of style and swing. Don’t be afraid, the menu of chicken and waffles and casual American fare keeps it feeling unpretentious.

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Mr. Tipple’s Recording Studio

Civic Center/UN Plaza (SF)

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The name says it all. Southern feasts alongside live blues bands keep people chomping at the bit for Biscuits and Blues. The classy blues joint bursts with plenty of soul and smooth moves off Union Square; sit in front of an intimate stage and simmer in creole jambalaya, cocktails and, of course, classic blues riffs.     

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Biscuits and Blues

Powell St. (SF)

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Sometimes you want to pretend you’re going out to see Sinatra take the mic. The Tenderloin’s bar with a downstairs-and-dark blues and jazz club, Black Cat keeps the romance of basement blues alive. Grab a two-top or get comfy in a booth; plenty of appetizers and imbibing complement the live soundtrack.   

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Black Cat

Civic Center/UN Plaza (SF)

Photo courtesy of Facebook

A low-key door and narrow entryway directly on Market Street off 3rd Street in downtown San Francisco leads to this downstairs newspaper-themed underworld of cocktails and live music. It’s all about an old-school ambiance set by typewriters and paperboy hats in this dimly lit favorite. While a band plays nearby, the feeling remains expansive with high ceilings and enough space to find your own spot to carve out a nook amongst the crowd. 

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Local Edition

Montgomery St. (SF)

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