[Dixielandjazz] The Bookstore - A Speakeasy in Bethlehem PA.

Stephen G Barbone barbonestreet at earthlink.net
Thu Jun 23 08:47:24 PDT 2011

Quick hype for a gig tomorrow night.

Friday - June 24 - 9 PM to 1 AM.

I'll be at the "The Bookstore" , 336 Adams Street, Bethlehem PA (610)  
- 867-1100 with a trio playing the music of the 1920s and 1930s.

This is a hidden gem of a place where young Drew Nugent usually holds  
court with his merry band and a plethora of Fats Waller songs. He is  
out of town this Friday and so I am filling in for him.

The Bookstore is an old Speakeasy. The entry, in a warehouse district,  
is behind a windowless door on the street that simply says "Bookstore"  
on it. The small lobby area would have you believe that it is indeed a  
Bookstore. Then, you pass through the curtain and enter a dimly lit  
joint that offers food and drink,. and 1920s-1930s music. Both live  
and on the house record system.

It is just a block or two off the Moravian College campus and draws a  
large part of its patrons from that institution. Young crowd with a  
few older folks there who don't mind mixing with them. The young folks  
simply adore us old, recycled jazz musicians. Nice folks who love the  
ambience and the music.

Typical review comments

I would highly recommend coming here on one of the nights where there  
is a band playing The jazz bands they have come in are really  
incredible and authentic. Only problem is, they can get really loud  
and it's difficult to have a conversation with the people at your  
table, especially if you're seated near the band.

wow =) everything - from atmosphere to cocktails -  was  amazing! and  
of course live jazz...and friendly bartenders =) it felt like i  
traveled back in time =)

we were the oldest customers there (our age-range is 58-62), but the  
lighting for ordering off the menu is painfully low. We read reviews  
beforehand and brought flashlights. The food tasted good but, again,  
the portions are tiny and the prices are not. We very much enjoyed the  
Dixieland band. Our final tab came to almost $200.00 for small snacks  
and 8 drinks. I'll leave the math to you, or "youse" as our server  
referred to us.

One caveat as you can see above, the place is not cheap. (Drinks are  
around $10-12). However, if you want an experience like Jimmy Ryan's  
of the late 1940s, early 1950s, this is the place to go. Given the  
inflation since then, the prices are about the same in "real terms".

Fall by if you get a chance.


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