Located in the heart of Times Square, B.B. King Blues Club & Grill is a small, yet prominent live music venue in New York City. Many prolific artists have walked through its doors and graced its stage, such as Aretha Franklin, James Brown, Alicia Keys, The Allman Brothers, Gipsy Kings, ZZ Top, and Jay Z. A separate bar/restaurant is located inside called Lucille’s Grill, after B.B. King’s famous guitar of the same name, which serves good eats and live music daily. The original B.B. King’s Blues Club was opened in Memphis, and the Times Square location opened in June 2000, making it the third of its kind.
B.B. King Blues Club & Grill
B.B. King Blues Club & Grill itself is first come, first served and cabaret style, meaning you may be seated at a table with other guests. Flash photography and recoding devices are forbidden making the performance entirely ephemeral. Additionally, depending on the night and the band, you can dance the night away!! Tickets and more information can be found here.
The late B.B. King, the namesake of the club, was an American blues singer, electric guitarist, songwriter, and producer. King came from humble beginnings first singing gospel in his local choir. The local minister there taught King his first three chords on guitar, and he went on to teach himself the rest. He originally wanted to be a radio musician and went Memphis a few times, each time preparing himself even more for the competition. He landed a spot in radio, gained a fan base, and earned the nickname “Beale Street Blues Boy,” which shortened to “Blues Boy” and finally to B.B. In 1949, he got a record deal and his career took off from there, earning him top-charting hits, tours across the country, and coveted spots in both the Blues and Rock and Roll Halls of fame.
B.B. King will always be remembered for his introduction of sophisticated guitar solos based on fluid string bending and shimmering vibrato that was unlike any other musical of his time. He remains one of the most influential blues musicians of all time, and goes down in history as one of the “The Kings of the Blues.”