Uptown Jazz Lounge opens in Birmingham

Uptown Jazz owners (left to right) Patrick Chatman I, Patrick Chatman II, Larry Forest and Rod Conwell. (Nathan Watson/Bham Now)

By Nathan Watson


Uptown Jazz Birmingham’s only jazz lounge, founded by four locals, Rod Conwell, Patrick Chatman I, Patrick Chatman II and Larry Forest, opened on October 27 in 2250-B 9th Avenue North, Birmingham, AL 35203.

The four owners created Uptown Jazz to bring back the magic of popular jazz clubs in Birmingham in the 80s, 90s and 2000s, such as 27th Street Jazz, Grundy’s Music Room and Ona’s Music Room.

Uptown Jazz offers an upscale lounge experience, perfect for relaxing and enjoying live jazz music. Inside, you’ll find dozens of four-table tables around the main stage, which is equipped with quality speakers, lights, and all the stage equipment a jazz band might need. Out back, Uptown Jazz hosts a full bar with beer, wine, and craft cocktails.

“The atmosphere has been very dynamic, and it’s only thanks to word of mouth. On our first open party, the entertainer was doing his thing and passers-by walking through CityWalk just started buzzing and dancing to the music. It was very exciting,” Conwell said.

He added: “We want to invite all of the Birmingham metropolitan area to join us in listening to good music with good vibes. Jazz has been missing in Birmingham for almost a decade, so it’s time to come and enjoy all that you’ve been missing.

Although Uptown Jazz does not serve food, the team is working on partnerships with several food trucks that operate within CityWalk BHAM’s food truck block.

The owners plan to have live jazz performances most weekend nights and will incorporate open mic nights, karaoke and spoken word performances throughout the week and occasionally on Sundays.

Since the opening of Uptown Jazz, it has hosted several artists of local, regional and national renown, including Cashmere WilliamsTony Tatum, sophisticated and Poogie Bell. In addition to these heavy hitters, the owners want Uptown Jazz to be a place for local newcomers to get their start.

“From the beginning, we wanted Uptown Jazz to be a place where people can hear the crème de la crème as well as showcase artists who haven’t had a stage to perform. These artists are just as talented and have taken so long to perfect their craft,” said Patrick Chatman II.

Looking forward to next year, Uptown Jazz plans to host Eric Essex, James “PJ” Spraggins, Kim Scott and many other big names in jazz.

The best way to stay up to date on upcoming performances and at Uptown Jazz is to subscribe to their newsletter on their website and follow Facebook and instagram.

Uptown Jazz: 205.593.4003 | Email | Website | Facebook | instagram | Twitter | ICT Tac

Address: 2250-B 9th Avenue North, Birmingham, AL 35203

Opening hours: Tuesday to Thursday, 5 p.m. to 12 p.m.; Friday to Saturday, 5 p.m. to 2 a.m.; Sunday, 1 p.m. to 9 p.m.

To find out more about Birmingham’s modern mobile guide, visit www.bhamnow.com

Ada J. Kenney