Music in Paris


Here are five amazing things to do for Music lovers

1.) Honor classical music: Salle Pleyel, Theatre Des Champs Elysees

Classical music in Paris has always been a very sought after attraction. In the Salle Pleyel and Théâtre des Champs Elysées, you will find a perfect mix between internationally renowned orchestras and dynamic youth longing to make a name for itself, where virtuosity meets audacity and ambition. Other places like the Sainte Chapelle, which you can discover in an Evening River Walking Tour, regularly host some classical concerts.

2.) A night at a Jazz club: An experience you’ll never forget

The rue des Lombards, which leads you to the heart of Les Halles, is the street of Paris Jazz clubs. Make sure not to miss the Sunset-Sunside, the Duc des Lombards and the Baiser Salé. Cozy atmosphere, latest jazz revelations, all the ingredients needed to bury yourself in the Chicago of the 1950s or to educate your ear to the new sounds of contemporary jazz.

3.) The Fete De La Musique

The street becomes more alive than ever on the 21th of June: No need to register or buy any tickets: it’s free to watch others play… and to play! This day recreates a mix of genres and social origins on every balcony, on every meter of sidewalk, aiming for the largest audience. Be sure not to miss this popular and cheerful event, the Fête de la musique is only once a year!

4.) Music and dance go together: From Opera Garnier to Moulin Rouge

Who doesn’t know the famous Garnier Opera House, the architectural masterpiece that you can discover in a Landmarks Walking Tour, and that hosts famous ballets and operas? The city has also kept alive, for all the curious tourists, the Paris traditional cabarets like the Moulin Rouge, in the 18th district, at the foot of Montmartre.

5.) Pop, Electronic, R’N’B, and Rock music in Paris

They say “There’s no business like show business!” & Paris is also a major city in Europe for many pop stars and international artists on tour. It’s one of the capitals of showbiz. Its numerous concert halls like the mythical Olympia, the Casino de Paris, the Cigale, the Zénith de Paris or the Palais Omnisport de Bercy welcome every year hundreds of singers and musicians from all over the world, and styles from pop-rock to electronic music. The city and its near suburbs also host popular festivals like the Solidays, in the end of June, or Jazz à Saint-Germain des Prés.

Insider’s tips:

  • On Music day, you can both go to the big and free concerts organized in the biggest Parisian gardens, but you should also just wander through the streets, looking forward to finding your musical style.
  • Salsa, rock’n’roll, varieties, pop, RNB… everyone will be pleased. Discover an artist you have never heard about, going to a tiny Parisian concert hall. There is nothing more typically Parisian.
  • Free concerts are often organized in the FNAC stores, have a look at the website!

Facts about Music in Paris

Paris is, has always been and always will be a musical city. From the French Revolution and throughout the XIX century, the “chansons” (what we called the politically or socially committed songs) we hear in the streets unequivocally reflect the public opinion. From then, the government started worrying about those forms of contestations and was even forced to call up the Police in order to curb the flow of itinerant musicians coming from all over France and even Italy.

The first widespread instrument was the “Orgue des rues” (the street organ), soon replaced by the village bands and fanfares in the public parks bandstands (the “kiosques”). Those bands were a means of socialization and education of Paris’ citizens. Since 1880, the 14th of July balls (on the National French Day) celebrates the Republic. The well-known accordionists cheer the people up and make them dance together regardless of their social origins.

During the XX century, the “orchestra-men” (men playing several instruments with many parts of their body) brought a new dimension to street music but there are still many singers who perpetuate the tradition of the “Chanter Paris” (sing Paris). One of the most famous is Edith Piaf (1915-1963) even if most of them, unfortunately, stay anonymous. Did you know at least 2000 musicians play – usually illegally – in Paris’ metro every day, while the street seems to have lost its musical and therefore social role?

That’s why the former ministry of Culture Jack Lang implemented the “Fête de la musique” (French Music day) in 1982. It hosts local festivals and now more than a hundred countries celebrate it the same day, in the streets or in concert halls, on June 21st, summer solstice day.


If you want to discover the spirit of a nation, just listen to its music” (Plato) “Paris does not only host many great classical music events, but it has also developed its own love for music. Whether it be with the Fête de la musique or with the famous “French touch” that everybody talks about, from jazz to electronic music”. Parisians imported the New Orleans jazz in the second half of the XXth century and ennobled it, absorbing it in French culture.



  • 13 million visitors a year 99%
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Other Attractions

1.) Musée du Quai Branly:
The théâtre Lévi-Strauss inside the museum offers you the best of jazz and World music.
See the cycle de jazz Bleu indigo. From 10 to 15€.

How to get there:
Metro: Alma Marceau, line 9
Bus: 42, 63, 80, 92.

2.) Opera Bastille:
2700 seats, incredible acoustics and unique stage equipment. In this modern and classy Opera House, you will never get tired of classics: ballets like Romeo and Juliet or Cinderella, operas like Faust or Don Giovanni, and symphonic concerts.

How to get there:
Metro: Bastille lines 1, 5 and 8
RER A and D: Gare de Lyon
Bus: Lines 20, 29, 65, 69, 76, 86, 87, 91

3.) The Olympia:
One of the oldest concert halls in Paris. Every single international music star has at least once performed at the Olympia. It has welcomed an extraordinary variety of artists like the Rolling Stones, the Beatles, Edith Piaf and Charles Aznavour and has now opened to all sorts of popular humorists and comedians, like Jerry Seinfeld for example.

How to get there:
Metro: Madeleine: Lines 9, 12, and 14
Opera: Lines 3, 7 and 8
Bus: Lines 42, 52, 24, 84, 94, 53, 66

Why it’s worth visiting

  • Paris is unique. But Parisian music is both unique and unrivaled. From the lyrics to the rhythm, through the atmosphere and the singers themselves, the French have preserved their roots and are still truly original and typical.
  • In Paris, you will have the chance to hear music on each street corner. Your ears may sometimes bleed, but believe us; you will hear some delicious melodies. The man singing with its guitar every morning in the metro is definitely likely to become a new star!