Diverse And Unusual Places To Find Music In Roscoe View

By Jason Kreke | Wednesday, June 29, 2011

You can find jazz every Sunday night at the Hungry Brain's Sunday Transmission Series in Roscoe Village. Credit: Jason Kreke

In Roscoe Village and West Lakeview, the music is as diverse as the place it’s being played. It could be acoustic music over dinner or maybe dancing to a live band. There’s also coffee and classical. Then again, a hammer dulcimer with Guinness or a deli/liquor store/bar that plays reggae is always a possibility. Centered mostly around Southport and Belmont, the area features diverse musical acts mostly on the weekends. Below are some places to find the expected and not-so-routine styles of music in the area to kick back, dance or tap your finger against the glass.

Blue Bayou - 3734 N. Southport Ave.

This Cajun spot on Southport serves up some New Orleans cooking, and during the week, the place has live bands that skew to the rock, jam band, brass band and blues styles. Much like bayou cooking, there’s just a little bit of something for everyone’s tastes.

Cullen’s - 3741 N. Southport Ave.

This Irish pub features the usual line up of Guinness and burgers, but it also features live music every Friday and Saturday night (primarily cover bands) and an open mic every Monday. Also, on the first Tuesday of every month, a hammer dulcimer player plays.

Coobah on Southport is a good place to catch acoustic music on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Credit: Jason Kreke.

Coobah – 3423 N. Southport Ave.

Right off the Southport Brown Line stop, Coobah features a live musician every Tuesday and Thursday night starting around 8:00 p.m. and lasting around an hour or so. Expect mostly acoustic, upbeat music. Grab a seat at the bar for the best spot to listen.

Epiphany United Church of Christ - 2008 W. Bradley Pl.

There aren’t many barns left in Chicago, but don’t let that stop you from going to Epiphany United Church of Christ for barn dancing on Monday nights. Starting at 8:00 p.m., the barn dancing is put on by the Chicago Barn Dance Company for those looking to try out their traditional square dancing skills against the tempo of a live band.

Fizz Bar and Grill – 3220 N. Lincoln Ave.

Whether you’re West coast or East coast swing, doing the Lindy Hop, or just starting out, Fizz has swing dancing on Monday nights featuring a live band or sometimes a DJ. The music and dancing starts at 9:00 p.m.

Finley Dunne’s Tavern - 3458 N. Lincoln Ave.

Even though it doesn’t have live music on a consistent basis, Finley Dunne’s is known to have some acts on Saturday nights starting at 9:00 p.m.

The Four Treys Bar - 3333 N. Damen Ave.

Getting on a stage and performing takes practice. At The Four Treys, you can show up at their weekly open mic night on Mondays to practice, practice, practice.

The Hungry Brain - 2319 W. Belmont Ave.

This eclectic dive bar at the edge of Roscoe Village on Belmont is usually a laid back place to enjoy some drinks and conversation. However, on every Sunday it becomes a jazz hothouse. Called the Sunday Transmission Series, the weekly event nurtures creativity and experimentation. Starts at 10:00 p.m.

Julius Meinl - 3601 N. Southport Ave.

The Viennese coffeehouse, known for its coffee and pastries, is a model of 19th century cafes found in Vienna. On Fridays and Saturdays, it adds to this atmosphere by featuring live music, which includes jazz and classical, and is primarily upbeat. Music starts at 8:00 p.m. and lasts until 11:00 p.m.

Miska’s Bar – 2156 W. Belmont Ave.

If you’re not quite sure of what to make of Miska’s, the important thing to know is that it features live music every Friday and Saturday night starting around 9:00 p.m. With up to four bands playing, the style of music always remains the same through the night, whether it is rock, reggae or blues. The acts are always rotating, so make sure to check ahead.

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