© Axel G.

Shortly before 20:30 p.m., a line of music lovers waited patiently on the sidewalk, in front of 38 Riv' located, as its name suggests, at 38, rue de Rivoli. Between Saint-Paul and Hôtel-de-Ville, here is the entrance to the only jazz club in the Marais - and one of the few in Paris - with its black awning, its three vaulted cellars (one houses the bar) and its small stage where an upright piano sits.

At the opening, everyone goes down to the basement for the first “set”. That Thursday, drummer Nicolas Signat's trio is in charge, with Kellian Camus on piano and Régis Igonnet on double bass.

On the program: Charlie Mingus, Bill Evans, Thelonious Monk, etc. The session, punctuated by enjoyable solos, ends with a wild Latin jazz rhythm (From Within, by Michel Camilo). In the theater, the public, all ages combined, asks for more.

Nicolas Signat on drums, Kellian Camus on piano and Régis Igonnet on double bass © Axel G.

Then the evening transforms, like every Thursday, into a jam session, with instrumentalists taking turns on stage until around midnight. On Fridays and Saturdays, the club is open until 2 a.m.

“It’s an atypical place but typical of jazz: we’re a little tight, the atmosphere is cool, not stuffy, the acoustics are good, we serve alcohol at the bar, people talk to each other,” says Vincent Charbonnier, who opened the place in 2007 and describes himself as the “captain of the musical ship” rather than “the chef”, “the owner” or “the director” of 38 Riv'.

The truth is that despite everything, he is the boss! Former double bassist, his pedigree is impressive. He was the sideman of Jacques Loussier, famous pianist and composer who died in 2019, well known for his jazzy interpretation of the work of Jean-Sébastien Bach.

Emilie Duporge, the manager © Axel G.

An all-round jazzman, Vincent Charbonnier has a long career behind him: "I've played everything: baroque music, jazz, pop, contemporary music... It's crazy what you can do with a double bass! »

After a brain tumor brought this great career to a halt, the eclectic double bassist put himself at the service of the rising generation by opening the "38 Riv'", which had become a "nursery" of talent.

The new music scene has found its home base here with, from Monday to Sunday, different themes: jazz concerts, of course, but also jam sessions, jam funk (Tuesdays) and Brazil concerts. Prices are affordable: €22, or €17 for those under 26.

Every evening, the magic happens and a little musical miracle occurs. Which is easily explained: blessed by the jazz gods, this place quite simply has a soul.

© Katia Barillot

38 Riv' jazz club
38 Rue de Rivoli, Paris 75004
Monday to Thursday from 20 p.m. to midnight
Friday and Saturday from 20:30 p.m. to 2 a.m.
Sunday from 17 p.m. to 19 p.m.
Tel: 01 48 87 56 30

concerts
• Wednesday 20:30 p.m. (jazz)
• Friday 21 p.m. (jazz)
• Saturday 18:30 p.m. (current jazz)
• Saturday 21 p.m. (Latin jazz)
• Sunday 17 p.m. (baroque tea) – outside school holidays

Reservation on 38riv.com
Full price: €22 / Reduced price: €17 (job seeker, student under 26, disabled, large family, UMJ member, Paris Jazz Club member)
Saturday concert 18:30 p.m.: full price: €20 / reduced price: €15

Jam sessions and late jams
• Monday 20:30 p.m. (jazz)
• Tuesday 20:30 p.m. (funk)
• Thursday 20:30 p.m. (jazz)
• Friday 23:30 p.m. (jazz)
• 1st Saturday of the month 23:30 p.m. (funk)
• 3 other Saturdays of the month 23:30 p.m. (jazz)

No advance reservations for jam sessions
Entrance price: 1 drink plus €4

Text: Axel G.

22.10.21

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