6 Best Live Jazz to See in Cape Town

Cape Town is known for its love for music and it is a paradise for music lovers.  No matter the genre that incites you, you’ll manage to find a venue for it.

There are several special music jazz here in the southern part of Africa. By the 1960s Cape Town became the native to some world-famous jazz big names which include Basil Coetzee, Winston Mankunku, and Abdullah Ibrahim also known as Dollar Brand.

Live Jazz to See in Cape Town

Jazz in Cape Town is much more than just music. It is the story of suffering, slavery, and the struggle against apartheid. It speaks about the tale of salvation, exile, and freedom.

It is a place where you must explore the jazz scene and you’ll peer into Cape Town’s past, with groovy past telling it like it is. 

Here are the best 6 jazz in the Mother City that you must enjoy.

1. The Cape Town International Jazz Festival

Live Jazz to See in Cape Town

The Cape Town International Jazz Festival is a festival that is conducted every year in late March or early April at the Cape Town International Convention Centre.  This is the biggest jazz festival in sub-Saharan Africa, and it will never disappoint you.

The entire line-up is a great blend of hot up-and-coming musicians, local artists, and big international brands. As it happens only in a year, it builds more excitement. But there are several fantastic venues where you’ll be able to listen to jazz year-round.

2. The Piano Bar

The Piano Bar

It is a New York-style revue bar situated in De Waterkant which opens late every night, and guests can enjoy cocktails while watching the live performances. This bar has an intimate and high vibe, but it is widely known as an inclusive jazz bar.

Enjoy here jazz standards, blues, and even some indie folk music. Without knowing the genre, you still can enjoy the music as it’s all about having a good time with some sweet tunes. Don’t miss to check out the daily two-for-one tapas special!

3. The Crypt

The Crypt

The Crypt Restaurant is one of the best and most amazing venues in Cape Town. Located beneath St George’s Cathedral, and the underground setting that offers it a decent ambiance that’s unbeatable.

Tables are placed around the stage featuring a century-old white baby grand piano. This is a majestic and eclectic venue with the performers.

Enjoy a cheese platter with some light piano tunes, a burger with some funky Afro-jazz, and also a bottle of wine and dance the night away. Every night something or the other keeps happening here, chances are you will find something that appeals to you.

4. Winchester Mansions

Winchester Mansions

This Winchester Mansion is located close to the promenade in Sea Point, and they are known to conduct a jazz brunch every Sunday. You should book for the brunch and you’ll find a glass of bubbly, the Sunday paper, a live jazz band, and an amazing brunch spread to entertain with.

Find everything here from baked foods and fried eggs to sushi! Settle in here with a drink and enjoy the music in one of the best brunch centers in Cape Town.

5. Kaleidoscope Café

eidoscope Café

Located in the Kaleidoscope Church in Claremont, every Friday night it hosts live jazz bands. You can relish here an affordable meal and a wholesome evening full of entertainment, music, and fun for the whole family. 

The pastor who operates the Church is also a jazz lover, and you can catch his band as a supporting act. Here you will find new artists and ensembles, and it’s home to the African Musicians Trust.

6. Coffeebeans Routes

Coffeebeans Routes

Coffeebeans Routes is a tour company offering contemporary, urban, and African experiences and guiding you through the complex and nuanced history and culture of Cape Town. They have their own Jazz Safari, which is a tour for those who like their jazz served fresh and hot.

Listen to some local jazz musicians, enjoy some local cuisine and have the chance to witness the most intimate jazz performance you’ll ever come across.

Post dinner with a local musician, the tour takes you to a jazz venue and another musician’s home for more music and a bedtime drink. Explore the origins of Cape jazz and get under the skin of the city on this amazing, meaningful experience.


These are the top 6 Live Jazz Concerts you cannot miss out to watch and enjoy if you happen to visit Cape Town and of course, a big music enthusiast!

About the author

Mamta Sharma