| | | |

Gypsy Jazz – Paris: Where to See Gypsy Jazz in 2024 

Travels On Point Affiliate Disclosure Statement

Curious about Gypsy Jazz in Paris and where to find it? These jazz clubs and local venues are bringing the rhythms of the 1930s back to popularity. 

I have been to Paris many times and have explored its vibrant music scene firsthand. Gypsy jazz, also known as Manouche jazz, is a historic backbone of Paris’ jazz scene, and definitely an experience off the regular tourist path.

Gypsy jazz has roots in the Romani culture and is played with guitars, violins, and sometimes a clarinet or saxophone. It’s often in movie soundtracks or played by buskers or musicians in cafes.

It can be hard to decipher between authentic venues in Paris and the pricey tourist traps. But don’t worry because I’ve done the digging for you. Here is a quick guide to and the best places to find Gypsy jazz in Paris.

Guide to Paris Gypsy Jazz 

Gypsy Jazz guitarist on stage
Fapy Lafertin, gypsy jazz guitarist on stage in London, 1983, By Tony Rees, wikimedia commons.

What is Gypsy Jazz aka Manouche Jazz?

Gypsy jazz, also known as Manouche jazz, blends jazz, swing, and ethnic Romani music. It is an improvisational style, characterized by the “la pompe” guitar technique.

Ensembles usually have one or two acoustic guitars, violin and double bass. Here is an example of Swing Gitan (Gypsy) jazz.

History of Gypsy Jazz in Paris 

Django Reinhardt is credited with popularizing Gypsy jazz in the 1930s when the Romani-French guitarist teamed up with violinist Stéphane Grappelli and formed the Quintette du Hot Club de France. 

Their band, made up of five people at a time when big jazz bands typically contained between 12 and 30 players, captivated audiences worldwide and solidified Paris as a hub for the new style of jazz music.

Today, Paris continues to honor its Gypsy jazz heritage, hosting performances and events that celebrate the legacy of these pioneering musicians.

7 Best Places in Paris for Gypsy/Manouche Jazz

These seven venues host Gypsy/Manouche jazz jams and/or concerts. Some are old haunts of Django Reinhardt. Most are off the beaten path in Paris.

1. La Chope des Puces 

Paris Gypsy Jazz at La Chope des Puces
Tchavolo Schmitt and Steeve Laffont playing gypsy jazz at la Chope des Puces, Paris, in 2016 By Jean-Christophe Windland. Wikimedia Commons

On the edge of Saint-Ouen-sur-Seine, La Chope des Puces (The Flea Mug) is like a time capsule dedicated to the legacy of Gypsy jazz in Paris. 

Not only have some of the world’s most famous Manouche jazz musicians played here, but legend says it’s located near the place where Django Reinhardt injured his hand in a caravan fire.

The injury left two of his fingers paralyzed—a fateful event that led to the creation of Reinhardt’s unique playing style. Reinhardt passed away in 1953 but you can still see legendary Gyspy jazz artists play here, including Angelo Debarre and Reinhardt’s descendant, Steven Reinhardt.

Location: 122 Rue des Rosiers, 93400 Saint-Ouen-sur-Seine, France
Hours: 9 am – 7 pm Saturday & Sunday 
Entry fee: N/A

2. Serpent à Plume

Manouche jazz comes alive in Serpent à Plume (Feathered Snake) in Paris. This sleek establishment resides in one of Paris’ less well known area, the oldest square in Paris: Places des Vosges. 

Make your way to the cellar in the basement. Here, an underground Parisian speakeasy will transport you back in time with vintge cocktails and classic Gypsy jazz under ambient red lighting.

Location: 24 Pl. des Vosges, 75003 Paris, France
Hours: 11 am – 2 am Tuesday – Sunday
Entry fee: N/A

3. MONK La Taverne de Cluny

MONK La Taverne de Cluny (The Cluny Tavern) in the Latin quarter is a favorite with locals looking for Gypsy jazz in Paris. They have more than 60 beer selections, and a cozy bar atmosphere.

Some of the best Manouche jazz artists in Paris perform here, like the Steve Reinhardt Trio.

Location: 51 Rue de la Harpe, 75005 Paris, France
Hours: 10 am – 12 am Monday – Tuesday; 10 am – 2 am Wednesday – Sunday
Entry fee: N/A

4. La Chope du Chateau Rouge

You’d never guess that this intimate and somewhat divey neighborhood bar in Montmartre is has been one of the best places in Paris to find Gypsy jazz. 

Very relaxed and friendly local bar that serves beer and wine and a basic menu. You will have a real local neighborhood experience here!

Note: La Chope du Chateau Rouge regularly hosted Gypsy jazz in the past, but it’s unclear if they still offer regular performances.

Location: 40 Rue de Clignancourt, 75018 Paris, France
Hours: 7 am – 2 am Monday – Sunday
Entry fee: N/A

5. Au Clarion des Chassures

Place du Tertre in the Montmartre district of Paris has been a gathering place for artists since the late 19th century. It’s also one of the best places to find Gypsy jazz in Paris.

Au Clarion des Chassures (At the Hunter’s Bugle), is a brasserie right on Place du Tertre and has long been a hub for Gypsy jazz. 

They serve the classic dishes like French onion soup, escargot, and oysters, but Au Clarion de Chassures is much better recognized for the music and the iconic location in the center of Montmartre..

Note: Au Clarion de Chassures is closed until April 15, 2024.

Location: 3 Pl. du Tertre, 75018 Paris, France
Hours: 7 am – 2 am Monday – Sunday
Entry fee: N/A

6. Jazz Club Etoile

Don’t let the name deceive you. While Jazz Club Etoile (Jazz Club Star) has a reputation for being one of the best jazz clubs in Paris, they also cater to a variety of music types. From Manouche jazz to R&B to Rockabilly to Funk, this venue does it all.

Jazz Club Etoile is a dinner concert venue in Ternes where you can watch some of the best musicians in Paris while eating a chef-prepared meal. 

The famous jazz Manouche guitarist Thomas Dutronc sponsors evenings where talented contemporary Manouche jazz musicians like Costel Nitescu play regularly.

The menu here is basic, serving a choice between beef Tartare, chicken Caesar salad, or the Chef’s dish, but the music is phenomenal. 

Location: 81 Bd Gouvion-Saint-Cyr, 75017 Paris, France
Hours: Concert times vary by events
Entry fee: 15€

7.  L’Apostrophe

L’Apostrophe (The Apostrophe) has weekly Gyspy jazz sessions. (Check out this video for an example). Nestled in Canal St Martin, this Parisian jazz club has a welcoming ambiance for either dinner or drinks.

Drinks are reasonably priced and you’ll find both locals and tourists here for the music

Location: 23 Rue de la Grange aux Belles, 75010 Paris, France
Hours: 7 am – 2 am; closed Sundays. Gypsy Jazz Jams on Friday
Entry fee: N/A

👉 Check this out for a list of jazz jam sessions in Paris: Jam Sessions Paris

FAQs – Manouche Jazz / Gypsy Jazz

Gypsy Jazz Acoustic Guitar on parquet
Old gypsy acoustic guitar on parquet floor.

What is Gypsy jazz called now?

It is sometimes called Manouche Jazz.

How is gypsy jazz different from jazz?

Gypsy jazz comes from roots of ethnic folk music of the Romani people. Children learned by ear from elders. The sound is swing-like, earthy and the guitar is often featured with intricate and blazingly fast licks.

Here is an example with Angelo Debarre, a famous jazz manouche guitarist.

Where did Django play in Paris?

La Chope des Puces in Saint Ouen and the R-26 Salon, held in a private residence are two places he frequently played.

What jazz musicians lived in Paris?

Django Reinhardt, Michel Legrand

Final Thoughts

So there you have it. Paris is not just the most romantic city in the world, it’s also one of the best jazz hubs on the planet. From intimate underground speakeasies to cozy Parisian cafes, and everything in between, this town has a jazz venue for every mood.

Catching a gyspy jazz jam session is one of the more unique experiences you could have in Paris, and is can easily fit into a weekend in Paris itinerary.

Connect with local culture by seeing some authentic Gypsy jazz in Paris at one of these local jazz clubs on your next trip to the City of Lights!

Reading related to Gypsy Jazz in Paris:

The 7 BEST Paris Speakeasies to Visit in 2024

21 Hidden Gem Restaurants In Paris: Authentic and Off-The-Beaten-Path

Paris Café Culture: A Beginner’s Guide To Café Etiquette 2024