Last Friday I did something odd: I left downtown Seattle to check out some jazz.
Located in the northern part of University District, Lucid Jazz Lounge is a small, classy venue with a full weekly schedule of live jazz, and – get this – no cover charge, ever.
As a musician, I need to take a moment to applaud them here. I know for a fact that this club pays their musicians, which is something I completely support. The fact that they do it without charging customers extra has won me over as a regular guest forever.
The service was fantastic; extremely friendly waiters who were very attentive, even when the place got a bit overcrowded. The food; great. I had a pint of Seattle lager for $4, shared a plate of hummus and pita bread with my husband (another $4), and split a small-but-amazing little circle of Kahlua white chocolate cheesecake ($6).
And the music; heck yes. This particular night featured the Jason Parker Quartet, and the band was absolutely incredible. Big arenas with screaming fans are one thing, but to me, there’s nothing more exciting than an intimate crowd getting involved with the really great music being made right in front of them.
The only thing I would complain about – and to be honest, I’m not really complaining – was that even when the tables and chairs were filled, guests continued to pile in. I was at a table near the back by the bar, and found myself staring at a few backs for most of the performance rather than the band. The waiters impressed me with their ability to navigate through the press of bodies, and according to one, this is a regular weekend situation.
I can’t complain about people wanting to see some live jazz. So my advice to you; get there a little early and grab a seat closer to the windows to ensure an unblocked view. This place is absolutely worth the wait.
[image courtesy of jenny downing]