Alphabetical Listing of Chicago Jazz Clubs,
ca. 1915-30


This list of jazz clubs was compiled by U of C alumnus Leon H. Lewis (College '28), who passed away on June 12, 2003. Mr. Lewis started work on the map when he was 80; he generously donated it to the Chicago Jazz Archive, which made it available on the CJA website in 1999. We are grateful to Mr. Lewis for allowing us to make this priceless gift available to jazz scholars all over the world. More about Mr. Lewis.

Mr. Lewis acknowledged the use of Dempsey J. Travis' An Autobiography of Black Jazz (Chicago: Urban Research Institute, 1983) as a source for much of the information below, including the names and addresses of clubs as well as names of groups and musicians who played in each club. Without Mr. Travis' work, Mr. Lewis could not have provided such a detailed list. The Curator of the CJA used the "Nightclubs and other venues: Chicago" entry from the New Grove Dictionary of Jazz, Second Edition (London: Macmillan Press Limited, 2002) and the Chicago Defender newspaper to amplify the information provided by Mr. Lewis and Mr. Travis.

(Numbers in brackets refer to the points on the maps)

Alvin Ballroom
51st at Michigan

Alvin Dinsant Hall [16]

Apex Club [20]
330 E. 35th St. ca. 1926-28
Was the Club Alvadere ca. 1920-22; the Nest Club ca. 1922-26

Junie Cobb
Johnny St. Cyr
Dave Nelson
Joe Poston
Johnny Wells
Earl Hines
Jimmy Noone

Bacon's Casino [31]
E. 49th at S. Wabash ca. 1927-45

Jimmie Noone
Joe Williams
Floyd Campbell
"Scoops" Carry

Blue Heaven Ballroom [34]
12 W. Garfield (55th St.)

Century Club [32]
49th at Michigan

Ciro's [40]
317 E. 55th Street (Garfield Blvd.)

Dave's Cafe [6]
51st and Michigan until ca. June/July 1934
343 E. 55th (Garfield Blvd.) ca.1934-36
Becomes the Swingland Cafe ca.1936- c.1940
Becomes the Rhumboogie ca.1940-1947
Becomes the Premier Studio ca.Aug.1949- c.Nov.1950

Ray Nance
Fletcher Henderson
Coleman Hawkins
Carroll Dickerson

Dreamland Ballroom [14]
3518-20 S. State ca.1912-early 20's
Became Dreamland Cafe ca. early 1920's

King Oliver
Johnny & Warren "Baby" Dodds
Louis Armstrong and Hot Five
Alberta Hunter
Sidney Bechet
Lawrence Duhé
Ethel Waters

Dreamland Cafe (aka Dreamland Gardens, Dreamland Ballroom) [13]
3518-20 S. State St. ca. early 1920's to 1928
4700 S. State Street ca. 1933-46
Was Dreamland Ballroom 3518-20 S. State Street ca. 1910-early 1920's

Louis Armstrong
Jack Johnson
Ethel Waters
Alberta Hunter
Cab Calloway
Joe Oliver
Honoré Dutré
Johnny and Warren "Baby" Dodds
Freddie Keppard
Doc Cheatham

Elite Club aka Elite Cafe [3]
Elite #1 was at 3030 S. State St.
Elite #2 was on State between 26th and 31st.
The clubs operated ca. 1910-1928

Jelly Roll Morton
Earl Hines
Alberta Hunter

Club El Rado (at the Garfield Hotel) [37]
231 E. 55th Street ca. 1920's-early 1930's

Jimmy Noone and the Apex Recording Orchestra
Dicky Wells

Entertainer Cafe aka Entertainer Club, Entertainer Hall [18]
Two locations: 207-209 E. 35th St.,
and on E. 35th between S. Indiana and S. Prairie Avenues ca. 1910's-20's

Sammy Stewart and his Knights of Syncopation
Freddy Keppard's Band
Earl Hines
Natty Dominique
Vernie Robinson
Carroll Dickerson

Fiume Cafe [17]
35th (or South Parkway) at State ca. 1919

Freddie Keppard
Buster Bailey

Golden Lily Chinese Restaurant/Tavern [39]
309 E. 55th Street (Garfield Blvd.) ca. 1926-1939
Became White's Emporium ca. 1939

Coleman Hawkins (ca. 1941)
Tiny Parham & Ikey Robinson with the Victor Recording Orch.
Teddy Wilson
Albert Ammons
Punch Miller

Grand Terrace & New Grand Terrace [22]
3955 S. Parkway ca. 1928-37; 315-17 E. 35th 1937-

Earl Hines
Dave Peyton
Tiny Parham
Carroll Dickerson
Fletcher Henderson
Count Basie

Grand Theatre [4]
3110-12 S. State Street ca. 1908-1930

Wilbur Sweatman
Dave Peyton
George Mitchell
Kid Ory
Bob Schoffner
Bud Scott
Jimmy Bertrand
Zue Robertson
Warren "Baby" Dodds
Reuben Reeves
Cab and Blanche Calloway
Bessie Smith
Clara Smith
Charlie Allen
Ethel Waters and her Jazz Masters
Sammy Stewart

Indiana Theatre [30]
219 E. 43rd St.

'It' Club [35]
5450 S. Michigan Boulevard ca. 1930's

John Kirby
Albert Ammons
Tommy Powell and his Hi-De-Ho Boys
Maxine Sullivan

Lincoln Gardens [10]
459 E. 31st St. ca. 1921
Became New Charleston Cafe, then Cafe de Paris

King Oliver's Jazz Syncopators
Johnny and Warren "Baby" Dodds
Louis Armstrong
Buster Bailey

Lincoln Theatre [2]
3132 S. State St.

Metropolitan Theatre aka Ascher's Metropolitan Theater [26]
4644 S. Parkway ca. 1917-30

Erskine Tate
Fats Waller
Bob Schoffner
Omer Simeon
Quinn Wilson
Wallace Bishop
Sammy Stewart
Louis Armstrong
Clarence Jones and his Syncopators

Michigan Theatre [36]
East 55th Street and Michigan Avenue ca. late 1920's to early 30's

Sammy Stewart
Chu Berry
Boyd Atkins
Sid Catlett
Erskine Tate
Fess Williams and his Jazz Boys

Midway Garden Ballroom aka Midway Gardens [42]
60th at Evans/ Cottage Grove

Elmer Schoebel
Art Kassel
Muggsy Spanier
Jess Stacy
Benny Goodman
Boyce Brown
Frank Teschemacher

Monogram Theatre [12]
3435-40 S. State St. ca. 1910's-

Sidney Bechet
Ethel Waters
Erskine Tate
Ma Rainey

New Deluxe Cafe [11]
3502 S. State St.

Jelly Roll Morton

The Owl Theatre [25]
4653 S. State St.

Clarence Jones

Panama Club [15]
3501 S. State St. ca. 1910's-1920
Became the Oriental Cafe (3532 S. State) ca. 1920's

Ada "Bricktop" Smith
Florence Mills
Cora Green
Alberta Hunter

J. Glover Compton & the Syncopators
Reuben Reeves

The Peerless [19]
3956 Grand Boulevard ca.1917-28

Pekin Theatre aka Pekin Inn, Pekin Cafe, Pekin Cabaret [1]
2700 S. State St. ca. 1910's-20's

Shelton Brooks
Manuel Perez
Tony Jackson
Joe "King" Oliver
Sidney Bechet

Pershing Ballroom and El Grotto Supper Club (at the Pershing Hotel) [44]
E. 64th at Cottage Grove

Plantation Cafe [21]
338 E. 35th St. 1924-30's; 5060 S. Michigan 1934-

Joe "King" Oliver with the Dixie Syncopators
Jabbo Smith
Dave Peyton

Platinum Lounge at the Vincennes Hotel [24]
601 E. 36th St. ca. 1930's

Jimmy Noone
Earl Hines
Franz Jackson
Joe Williams

Radio Inn at Vincennes Ave. and 39th St. [X]

Tommy Ladnier

Regal Theatre [28]
4719 S. Parkway Blvd. 1928-1960's

Earl Hines
Dave Peyton
Cab Calloway
Duke Ellington
Count Basie
Fess Williams
Louis Armstrong
Eubie Blake
Jimmy Lunceford
Lionel Hampton
Woody Herman
Noble Sissle

Royal Gardens [9]
459 E. 31st St.
Became Lincoln Gardens ca. 1921.

Jimmy Noone
Joe Oliver
Bill Johnson
Clarence Williams

Savoy Ballroom [27]
S. Parkway Blvd. and E. 47th, 1927-48

Louis Armstrong
Zutty Singleton
Carroll Dickerson's Band
Clarence Black
Charlie Elgar
Fletcher Henderson

Schiller Cafe [8]
318 East 31st Street 1916 - ?

Managed by promoter Harry James, offered some of the earliest known performances in Chicago.

March-May 1916:
Johnny Stein
Alcide "Yellow" Nunez
Eddie Edwards
Henry Ragas
Nick LaRocca

Booker Ashford's '65' Club [41]
5507 S. Michigan Ave.

Sunset Cafe [23]
315-17 E. 35th St. 1921-1937

Erskine Tate
Carroll Dickerson's Band
Earl Hines
Cab Calloway
Sammy Stewart Band
Buster Bailey
Louis Armstrong Sunset Stompers
Charlie Elgar's Band
Boyd Atkins Band
Tiny Parham

Vendome Theatre [5]
3145 S. State St. ca.1910's-49

Louis Armstrong
Erskine Tate and the Vendome Theater Symphony Orchestra
Earl Hines
Fats Waller
Clarence Jones

Venetian Room at the Southmoor Hotel [45]
66th at Stony Island Ave. ca. 1926-

Benny Goodman
Ben Pollack and his Sunkist Serenaders (later named Californians)

Warwick Hall [29]
543 E. 47th St.

Nat "King" Cole
"Pee Wee" Jackson
Cavel Chilton

White City Amusement Park Ballroom [43]
6300 S. Parkway Boulevard ca. 1920's-1930's

Husk O'Hare's Wolverines
Bud Freeman
Dick and Jimmy McPartland
Frank Teschemacher
Dave Tough
Muggsy Spanier
Mezz Mezzrow

Willard Theatre [33]
340 E. 51st St.

Sammy Stewart

Zeppelin Inn [7]
31st and S. Indiana Ave. ca. 1930

Freddie Keppard
Frankie "Half Pint" Jaxon

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