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From city halls to underground bars, Cape Town has an ever-growing live music scene that showcases the best of the local up-and-coming artists in every genre. Heaving with alternative sounds on any given night, and a popular destination for lovers of jazz music, Cape Town has an abundance of venues and smoky speakeasies, where soulful crooning can be heard amongst the general chatter.
If you count yourself amongst the cultured, velvet smoking jacket wearers, then it is highly recommended that you head to the hottest Jazz spot in town; the cool, candlelit Crypt. Situated under St Georges Cathedral, this venue offers live Jazz music five nights a week. The line-up, which is never the same two nights running, has a band to suit everyone’s tastes. The Crypt offers every kind of performance from traditional Jazz bands to the most up-and-coming Jazz artists in the Cape. Although it is first and foremost a Jazz bar, The Crypt does offer food and snacks to accompany performances. Booking is recommended and there is an entrance fee of R45
Opening hours: Tue-Sun: 5.30pm – 12.00am (Music) 7.00pm – 10.00pm
Watch out for: Local and international jazz names
Corner of Wale and Adderley Streets, Cape Town, South Africa +27 (0) 79 683 4658
Best known for its craft beer, this Portuguese-owner beer garden plays host to live music groups every Tuesday and Wednesday evening from 8pm. The perfect evening out with friends, there are a variety of bands and music styles to watch, with a different band playing during each performance. Sit outside on a warm summer evening, enjoy an ice cold beer and gourmet pub food, and soak up the live music vibes. If you’re feeling brave, strike up a conversation with the inevitable hipsters sharing your picnic table (seating is limited).
Opening hours: Tue-Sat: 3.00pm – 12.00am (Music) 8.00pm – 10.00pm
Watch out for: The hipster vibe and local bands
110 Bree Street, City Centre, Cape Town, South Africa +27 (0) 21 422 2770
Set in an old building but packed with modern ideas, Asoka is a glamorous bar and restaurant that derives its name from the third Mauryan Emperor of India. Its stylish interior is a mashup of cultures with original Victorian architecture, traditional Asian décor and contrastingly up-to-date DJ booth. The key feature of this venue, however, is the Tuesday evening Jazz performances. Every Tuesday from 8.45pm to 10.30pm the restaurant welcomes in guests to the sound of smooth, sultry Jazz tones. If the music is to your liking, extend your stay by ordering a meal, some tapas or one of the bar’s fantastic cocktails. For the party people, there is a DJ on standby to take over from the live act and they will ensure the remainder of your evening is full of equally excellent tunes.
Opening hours: Mon-Sat: 5.00pm – 2.00am
Watch out for: The jazz evenings
68 Kloof Street, Gardens, Cape Town, South Africa +27 (0) 21 422 0909
Inspired by the swanky Jazz joints of New York City, Piano Bar has a reputation as the grooviest spot in Cape Town. With a selection of live funk, soul, blues and jazz every night of the week from 8pm, there is always a constant hum of song surrounding this bar. If you want to hear something new, make sure to go on a Saturday evening when local musicians are given the opportunity to showcase their talent. As well being known for its live music and top quality food, Piano Bar is also known for its spectacular views of the mountain and surrounding village which are best seen at sunset.
Opening hours: Mon-Sun: 4.30pm – late
Watch out for: Local musicians on Saturdays
47 Napier Street, De Waterkant, Cape Town, South Africa +27 (0) 21 418 1096
The Waiting Room is an intimate venue jammed full of comfy couches and cushions for the tired end of the week workers. Situated above Cape Town’s most famous burger joint, Royale Eatery, the retro-chic bar plays host to a variety of live bands. Acoustic covers, hip hop beats and rising local talents are all to be seen entertaining audiences on Tuesday and Wednesday evenings. If the music takes hold of your feet, there is a dance floor to get down on or a stunning rooftop balcony on which to enjoy a romantic slow dance under the stars.
Opening hours: Tue-Sat: 2.00pm – 2.00am
Watch out for: The rooftop balcony
273 Long Street, City Centre, Cape Town, South Africa +27 (0) 21 422 4536