Stay up-to-date on all of the buzz surrounding BLU Jazz+! Here you will find photos, interviews, press releases and other newsworthy information about Akron’s hottest new destination for live jazz!


BLU Jazz+ named “Best Thing to Happen to Akron” winner by Akronlife Magazine

July 8, 2015 -

AKRON, OH (Akronlife Magazine, July 2015)
Second only to LeBron James’ return, Akronlife Magazine has named BLU Jazz+ “Best Thing to Happen to Akron” this year!
We are so very honored & humbled by this recognition, and are in good company in this category, along with the Akron RubberDucks & the Gay Games Cleveland! Thank you, Akron, Ohio and Akronlife Magazine!

Read Digital Issue

A cool place to enjoy a true American art form

June 11, 2015 -

AKRON, OH (by Molly Gase, Akronlife Magazine, June 2015)
Looking for an experience that is beyond the norm? Head down to BLU Jazz+. This jazz venue brings the idea of cool speak easy to Downtown Akron. “The acronym is BeLowU, and the idea is to create a cool “speak easy” that you need to go down/get down into a cool groovy place to get into that chill space of mind to really appreciate the genre of a true American art form,” says Tony Troppe.
Started by a group of jazz lovers — Tom Strauss, Mike Wyatt and Troppe — BLU Jazz+ opened in October of 2014. Bringing the succulent tones of jazz to the historic arts district of downtown, Troppe says that it’s a great location to be. “Positive energy of a great place attracts great people. They are winding up at BLU to not miss the downbeat.”

Read More

BLU Jazz+ presents Universal Music Classics recording artist, Becca Stevens Band

June 8, 2015 -

(AKRON, OH) – North Carolina-bred, New York-based singer/composer/guitarist and Universal Music Classics recording artist, Becca Stevens, has already received copious praise from the likes of The New York Times, describing her as “a best-kept secret” and “impressively absorbing.” The Boston Phoenix noted Becca’s “big voice and no-bull emotional delivery,” while The Winston-Salem Journal stated, “Stevens’s singing is remarkable, soulful, pitch-perfect and subtle in its controlled acrobatics. The arrangements are exquisitely produced, and her acoustic songs boast musical textures and colors that embrace the adventurism of jazz.”

Read More

BLU Jazz+ Presented with Zenith Award for Excellence in Hospitality by Akron/Summit Convention & Visitors Bureau

May 8, 2015 -

(AKRON, OH) May 8, 2015 — BLU Jazz+ has been presented with the “You Tell The Tourist Award” in the category of “Your Attendance Is Mandatory” in the 2015 annual Zenith Awards by the Akron/Summit Convention & Visitors Bureau.
The Zenith Awards ceremony, celebrated during National Travel & Tourism Week, recognizes contributions made to and by Summit County’s hospitality industry. The presentation took place at a luncheon at the John S. Knight Center in Downtown Akron on Tuesday, May 5, 2015.
Other Downtown Akron area recipients of the prestigious awards include Musica, Crafty Mart, and the Devil Strip, among others.

BLU Jazz+ Receives 2015 Best of Akron Award

April 13, 2015 -

(AKRON, OH) April 2, 2015 — BLU Jazz+ has been selected for the 2015 Best of Akron Award in the Jazz Club category by the Akron Award Program.
Each year, the Akron Award Program identifies companies that we believe have achieved exceptional marketing success in their local community and business category. These are local companies that enhance the positive image of small business through service to their customers and our community. These exceptional companies help make the Akron area a great place to live, work and play.
Various sources of information were gathered and analyzed to choose the winners in each category. The 2015 Akron Award Program focuses on quality, not quantity. Winners are determined based on the information gathered both internally by the Akron Award Program and data provided by third parties.

Read More

Tri-C JazzFest and BLU Jazz+ team up to present Gerald Clayton Trio, Berklee College of Music “Next Generation Jazz Ensemble” (directed by Terri Lyne Carrington)

March 12, 2015 -

(AKRON, OH) – The month of April is nationally recognized as Jazz Appreciation Month (JAM), an annual event created to pay tribute to jazz as both a living and historic genre of music. In partnership with Tri-C JazzFest (who celebrates their 36th season this year), BLU Jazz+ will be hosting a very special event, “Tri-C JazzFest Day in Akron,” on Thursday, April 16th, 2015!

Read More

“BLU Jazz+: Jazz is Alive and Very Well in Akron” | Stark County About Magazine feature, March 2015 issue

March 10, 2015 -

(AKRON, OH), by Dan Kane – Downtown Akron nightspot BLU Jazz+ has brought the city’s jazz tradition back to vibrant life. Located in the same lively neighborhood as the Akron Art Museum, The Nightlight Cinema, Musica concert club and Crave restaurant, BLU is a sophisticated venue for live jazz, be it local, regional or national.
Cocktails, craft beers and a small-plates food menu – prepared by 3 Point Restaurant, located directly upstairs – round out the BLU experience.
“The Akron area is saturated in jazz talent, from up-and-coming artists to jazz students, and there’s a vibrant jazz history here. Akron had a series of jazz clubs all along the Howard Street district from the 1930s all the way up to the ’60s,” said Mike Wyatt, one of BLU’s owners and its vice president of talent and events.
The opening of BLU Jazz+ last October proved that Akron was craving a venue for live jazz of many flavors. “Our opening weekend was completely sold out, and we’ve seen a number of sold-out or close-to-capacity shows since,” Wyatt said.

Read More

Interview: Akron Buzz with BLU Jazz+ General Manager, Colin Cook

March 3, 2015 -

(AKRON, OH) BLU Jazz+ General Manager, Colin Cook, sits down with Dan Mosher of Mosher Media to discuss how the concept for BLU got started, his background in fine dining, the food & cocktail program, and more!

Joey DeFrancesco brings jazz trio, including local guitarist Dan Wilson, to BLU Jazz+

February 13, 2015 -

(AKRON, OH) On Wednesday night, Akron’s BLU Jazz+ will welcome celebrated contemporary jazz player Joey DeFrancesco and his trio.
DeFrancesco is widely acknowledged as one of the best jazz organists alive. His resume as a sideman includes recording and/or performing with Miles Davis, Ray Charles, Bette Midler, David Sanborn, Arturo Sandoval, John McLaughlin, Grover Washington Jr., George Benson and John Scofield, to name but a few.
He is also a respected solo artist and bandleader who has recorded more than 30 albums under his own name and regularly wins DownBeat magazine’s readers poll.
For his first show in Akron, DeFrancesco, who was inspired to learn trumpet after his stint with Davis, is bringing his new organ trio, which features two musicians with Northeast Ohio connections. Drummer Jason Brown is a graduate of Oberlin College, while guitarist Dan Wilson is a proud Akronite who has been a fixture on the local jazz scene for several years.
For Wilson, 30, who also maintains a phalanx of local guitar students, this is his first extensive tour as a sideman, and it’s already taken the up-and-coming guitarist to the other side of the country and on a jazz cruise packed with legends and respected players whom Wilson grew up admiring.

“Big Band Birthday Bash” to feature blues, bop, boogie, & shout in first big band show at BLU Jazz+

February 1, 2015 -

(AKRON, OH) Legendary Cleveland tenor saxophonist and BLU Jazz+ “fan favorite,” Ernie Krivda, returns to the popular new live music venue & “speakeasy” for an exciting (and no doubt, swingin’) celebration of his 70th Birthday, with his 18-piece Fat Tuesday Big Band in tow!
Experience the very first big band show at BLU Jazz+ as the most energetic and talented musicans in the Midwest assemble for an unforgettable night of blues, bop, ballads, boogie and shout! Great musicianship, stylish distinction, and transcendent energy are a hard combination to beat, so don’t miss your chance to hear this band live right here in Akron! This is going to be one “for the books” – get your tickets today!

Read More


BLU Jazz+ was named one of the "Best Jazz Venues in the World" by DownBeat Magazine (2016, 2017, 2018)
Committed to the preservation of America's treasured art form of jazz, BLU Jazz+ Masterclass Foundation (BJMF) is a new program developed by the founders of BLU Jazz+ Akron that brings “front-row” jazz education performance & mentorship opportunities to student musicians and art lovers alike through an ongoing series of special events throughout the year.