Best of Boston

BEST Bar for Live Music

2016 BEST Bar for Live Music

Wally’s Cafe


From the outside, Wally’s looks like your average anonymous dive. But the drab exterior belies its storied history: This place has put live jazz acts on stage 365 days a year since 1947. Squeeze in among the regulars, order a… read more»

2003 BEST Bar for Live Music

Wally’s Café


Nowhere else in this town are you more apt to find pink Izods and gangsta colors in such proximity. This joint, nestled between the gentrified South End and Roxbury and opened in 1947 by Joseph “Wally” Walcott, is a classic… read more»

2002 BEST Bar for Live Music

Kendall Café


In addition to its popular Tuesday Night Music Club—a music series featuring unplugged sets by leading local musicians—the Kendall introduced a new program this year, Earfull, pairing local musicians with authors reading from their works. It’s the kind of thing… read more»

2001 BEST Bar for Live Music

The Kendall Café


As the many framed posters around the bar can attest, big named have played this small room situated on a Cambridge backstreet, among them Jewel and Elvis Costello. This year, the Kendall bolstered its currency with local talent, creating a… read more»

1992 BEST Bar for Live Music, Blues

Harper’s Ferry


That long bar. Those jam sessions. Lots of blue notes here but no blue listeners. read more»

1989 BEST Bar for Live Music, Rock

Man Ray


Neither new wave nor yuppie, and the best of the small names. Don’t be uncool; get there at about 11 o’clock. read more»

1985 BEST Bar for Live Music, Rock

The Paradise


Manager Seth Greenberg has turned the club around. read more»

1983 BEST Bar for Live Music, Rock

Inn-Square Men’s Bar


Another new arrival in the Hall of Fame. read more»