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5 Best Live Music Venues of Chicago

Chicago is known as one of the best music cities in the country and across the world. The ‘Chicago Blues’ that developed in the early decades of the twentieth century built on traditions from the South, but created a unique sound that was distinct from the Mississippi or Delta blues. To do justice to this rich history, we’ll explore five of Chicago’s best music venues.

  1. The Hideout

What is in essence just a frame house with a bar in the front and a stage in the “living room” in the back, this house set in an industrial part of the city hosts a wide range of events from live music to comedy and bingo.

2. Green Mill Cocktail Lounge

Carrying on the traditions set forth by the legends that once took the stage, this former speakeasy in Uptown dates back to 1907 and is the longest continuously running jazz club in the country.

3. Andy’s Jazz Club

With a prime location just two blocks from The Magnificent Mile and the Chicago Loop, this jazz mainstay draws a great crowd. Make a reservation for dinner or come early to secure seats, the intimate space has good views from all around the stage.

4. Chicago Cultural Center

A stunning showcase for the arts, this massive landmark building in the heart of downtown Chicago houses exhibits year round, while its halls come alive with the sound of music each week. Incredible performances — often classical, jazz, and blues — are free and open to the public in the casual first floor Randolph Café, on the stage of Claudia Cassidy Theater, and beneath the world’s largest Tiffany dome in Preston Bradley Hall.

5. Buddy Guy’s Legends

Owned by the iconic guitarist himself, this nightclub keeps the blues tradition alive on Chicago’s South Side. Local, national, and international acts play nightly, with Buddy playing sold out shows each January.

We hope you enjoyed learning a little bit more about Chicago’s rich music history with us. We’ll see you next week for another MusicLift blog post. Until then, have a good week and enjoy the fall leaves!

-The MusicLift Team

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