Jazz Itinerary

  • Print
  • Email
  • Facebook

Jazz music is alive and well in Oklahoma, where university jazz labs feature up-and-coming talent and sophisticated venues feature top headliners in the industry. Travel the same paths where jazz greats like Charlie Christian and Jimmy Rushing first found their talent and experience the same cultural centers that inspired them. Continue the journey to uncover where jazz legends like Chet Baker were born then enjoy live jazz music over a heaping pile of jambalaya along downtown Oklahoma City’s Bricktown canal.

Show all directions
Tahlequah
315 N Muskogee Ave
Tahlequah, OK

Stop 1: NSU Jazz Lab

Get a taste of New Orleans-style jazz from performers at the NSU Jazz Lab, which is housed in a downtown brick building reminiscent of the French Quarter. Famous jazz musicians including Diana Krall, Joe Lovano and Ray Brown have taken the stage here.

Show on Map
Show Directions to Next Stop
Tulsa
823 E 3rd St
Tulsa, OK

Stop 2: Hodges Bend

One of Tulsa’s most sophisticated nightlife locales, Hodges Bend is reminiscent of New Orleans in the 1940s with tin ceilings and live jazz on the weekends. Enjoy a fantastic cup of coffee, handmade pastry or a specialty cocktail at this Tulsa bar while listening to soft jazz records over the club’s sound system.

Show on Map
Show Directions to Next Stop
111 E 1st St
Tulsa, OK

Stop 3: Oklahoma Jazz Hall of Fame

See photographs of jazz greats and explore the history of jazz music at the Oklahoma Jazz Hall of Fame in Tulsa. Some of the inductees include Dizzy Gillespie, Chet Baker and Charlie Christian.

Show on Map
Show Directions to Next Stop
322 N Greenwood Ave
Tulsa, OK

Stop 4: Greenwood Cultural Center

The Greenwood District was a hot bed of jazz music in the early 1900s. The Greenwood Cultural Center explores the rich history of America’s “Black Wall Street” including its influence on jazz music. The area was Count Basie’s introduction to big-band jazz.

Show on Map
Show Directions to Next Stop
Yale
Downtown
Yale, OK

Stop 5: Yale, OK - Birthplace of Chet Baker

Yale, Oklahoma is the birthplace of jazz legend Chet Baker. Known for solidifying what was best described as “West Coast cool jazz,” trumpet player Chet Baker shares the same hometown as Native American Olympian Jim Thorpe. Even after Chet Baker’s family moved to Oklahoma City, he would return to Yale to spend time on his grandparents’ farm.

Show on Map
Show Directions to Next Stop
Edmond
100 E 5th St
Edmond, OK

Stop 6: UCO Jazz Lab

Styled after jazz clubs in New Orleans, the UCO Jazz Lab welcomes up-and-coming jazz acts as well as established genre favorites. Voted one of Oklahoma City’s best entertainment venues by patrons, the UCO Jazz Lab features live music every weekend and hosts special events celebrating jazz music.

Show on Map
Show Directions to Next Stop
Oklahoma City
228 NE 2nd St
Oklahoma City, OK

Stop 7: WSKY Lounge

Located in Oklahoma City’s Deep Deuce neighborhood, WSKY was once a performance space for jazz musicians, including Oklahoma’s own jazz guitarist Charlie Christian, in the 1920s and '30s. The local bar still hosts jazz shows today.

Show on Map
Show Directions to Next Stop
NE 2nd St
Oklahoma City, OK

Stop 8: Deep Deuce

Deep Deuce was the epicenter for jazz music in Oklahoma City during the early 1900s. Charlie Christian and Jimmy Rushing were both from this area and had a profound influence on the genre. Located near downtown Oklahoma City, Deep Deuce is now home to great restaurants and shops.

Show on Map
Show Directions to Next Stop
9 E Sheridan Ave
Oklahoma City, OK

Stop 9: American Banjo Museum

While many may think of the banjo as a country or folk instrument, jazz music put it to use in a unique way. Experience the history of jazz banjo for yourself at the American Banjo Museum.

Show on Map
Show Directions to Next Stop
2 S Mickey Mantle Dr
Oklahoma City, OK

Stop 10: Charlie Christian Mosaic at Bricktown Ballpark

Undoubtedly the most influential jazz musician from Oklahoma City, Charlie Christian is memorialized with a mosaic mural at the Chickasaw Bricktown Ballpark. The mural, which was installed in 2000, is located near the ballpark’s home plate entrance.

Show on Map
Show Directions to Next Stop
100 E California Ave
Oklahoma City, OK

Stop 11: Jazmo'z Bourbon Street Cafe

Enjoy authentic Cajun cuisine including jambalaya and fried alligator bites at Jazmo’z while you listen to live jazz music on the restaurant’s outdoor patio, which is situated along the Bricktown canal.

Show on Map
Show Directions to Next Stop