Jazz & Coffee Swan

Swan-4.jpg
1-18-1 Midori-Cho, Tokorozawa-Shi, Saitama-Ken, Japan

Jazz & Coffee Swan first opened in 1965 and still retains every bit of ambiance from that golden age of jazz cafe culture, right down to the large portrait of John Coltrane hanging in the front corner near the door.  Located in distant Shin-Tokorozawa just over the border of Tokyo within Saitama Prefecture, Swan is a place spoken of often by jazz kissaten customers I have met around town, referred to as one of the few remaining cafes from the old days.

Swan feels fairly roomy; the space is rectangular shaped with the bar along the right side and a small area by the back for live performances (about twice a week, with occasional jam sessions on Sundays). There are a few tables along the left wall, and some seats at the counter; if full the place could fit about 25 or so. Behind the bar are about 5000+ original records, partially hidden by one of those sliding shelve units with bottles of booze and glasses stacked on it. First Bud Powell, then Art Pepper was playing when I went in.

The current owner Sutou-san is a genial host; he was happy to chat with me about the joint and other jazz spots around western Tokyo and Saitama, answering all my questions and introducing me to one of the regulars (shout out to Mr. Hiroo there for buying me a beer.) Sutou-san took over Swan from the original owner about 15 years ago, inheriting all the records and keeping the place pretty much as is. Being much younger than many jazz cafe owners though he’s fully engaged online with both a Twitter account and Facebook page, making it easy to get updates about events and opening times.

Swan really does have it all; the records, the booze, the conversation, and that gorgeous Coltrane on the wall. It’s well worth the trip out west for an afternoon or evening there. See more pics of Swan over at Tokyo Jazz Joints.

Size
30
Food
Yes
Date published
Feb 2017
Birdland+(small)-5.jpg
1-31-8 Kita-Senju, Adachi-Ku, Tokyo 2.95 km
Birdland is a beautifully decorated cafe and bar located in the north-east part of Tokyo, just a ...
Aketa no Mise inside.jpg
Yoshino Bldg B101, NIshi-Ogikubo, Kita 9.07 km
Aketa No Mise (“The Open Store”) is out in west Tokyo, not far from Nishi-Ogikubo s...
IMG_4034.JPG
3-14-10 Nishi-Nippori, Arakawa-Ku, Tokyo 9.22 km
Charmant opened in 1955 and certainly looks and feels its age. It’s a tiny bar on the secon...
IMG_0832.JPG
Bunkyo-Ku, Hakusan 5-33-19 10.42 km
The Eigakan (映画館 “Movie Theater) is a jazz cafe for both jazz lovers and cinephiles. Own...
Every Swing outside.JPG
Tsuji Bldg B1, 3-14-12 Ueno, Taito-Ku 10.86 km
Every Swing is a small friendly club in the barren back streets east of Ueno Station. This is n...
Aries outside.JPG
Makita Bldg B1, 2-4-8 Ueno, Taito-Ku 10.86 km
Aries is a very local jazz live-house in the back streets of Ueno. By “local” I mea...
Minami-Shinozaki-cho 3-2-12, 2F, Edogawa-Ku 11.54 km
03-3698-218603-3698-2186
European style cafe, heavy on female vocalists and piano jazz.
Palace Garden Milano Bldg, 1F, Ikebukuro 2-63-6 11.89 km
Kenny’s Bar is by far the hippest place in not-so-hip Ikebukuro. It’s a small, dark j...
IMG_1204.JPG
Owl
Toshima-Ku, Higashi-Ikebukuro 1-28-1 Takuto T.O. Bldg 2F 11.91 km
The Owl cafe in Ikebukuro was a great mystery to me as the first three times I went by it was clo...
Paper Moon inside.JPG
Umimoto Bldg (梅本) , 4F, 3-29-2 Nishi-Ikebukuro 11.95 km
03-3985-024003-3985-0240
Paper Moon (ぺーぱーむーん) is a 15 seat L-shaped counter bar opened and run by the friendly Ya...
Jazz Live Bar Independence inside.JPG
Parkside Fuki B1, 3-22-8 Nishi-Ikebukuro 11.95 km
Jazz Live Bar Independence is another great joint located in the surprisingly hip neighborhood ...
Dai 2 Okumura Bldg, B1, 1-47-13 Ikebukuro, Toshima-Ku 11.95 km
Montgomery Land opened up a couple of years ago just a short walk from Ikebukuro Station. It̵...
IMG_0866.JPG
Toshima-Ku, Nishi-Ikebukuro, 1-15-6, Toshima Kaikan B2F 12.15 km
03-5904-857603-5904-8576
070-6455-0240
Absolute Blue is a new club opened in Feb 2015 by Ayumi Hoshikawa, previously a club owner in New...
2 Chome−1−10, Kanda Surugadai, Chiyoda-ku 12.24 km
Naru is a small, dinner-club place with serious jazz every night. Owned by sax-player Ishizaki Sh...
adiron05.jpg
Japan, 〒101-0051 Tōkyō-to, Chiyoda-ku, Kanda Jinbōchō, 1 Chome−2−9 ウェルスビル 12.61 km
The Adirondack Cafe is a unique jazz cafe and bar just off the main road through the Jinbocho are...
Root Down outside.jpg
2-8-12 Kajicho, Chiyoda-Ku 12.64 km
Root Down moved down the street just 30 meters from it’s original spot, it’s now Tō...
Jazz Bar Gugan outside.JPG
2 Chome-17 Kanda Tsukasamachi Chiyoda-ku 12.68 km
Jazz Bar Gugan is a small bar in the east side of Tokyo, near both the Ochanomizu and Jimbocho ...
2F 3-20-13 2F, Ogawamachi, Kanda, Chiyoda-Ku 12.72 km
Grauers is a new cafe/bar opened August, 2011. Owner Furusho Shinjiro is a long time jazz journal...
Jazz Olympus inside.jpg
Ogawamachi 3-24, Kanda, Chiyoda-Ku 12.8 km
03-3259-005503-3259-0055
Jazz Olympus was opened by the very friendly Komatsu-san in 2009. It’s a sleek cafe/bar t...
Corner Pocket inside.jpg
1-14 Kagurazaka, Shinjuku 12.88 km
03-3267-842303-3267-8423
I was walking through the back alleys of Kagurazaka, the “little Kyoto” area of Tokyo...
Fujimi Yoshida Bldg. B1, Fujimi 2-2-11, Chiyoda 13.1 km
Cafe Ragtime has live music every Thursday and Friday nights, usually piano and sax or vocalist d...
photo(33).JPG
2-24 Jimbocho Kanda, Chiyoda-Ku 13.1 km
Kissa Ko is one of the older cafes in town but had a facelift in 2012 so now has an all new decor...
Big Boy inside.JPG
1-11 Kanda-Jimbocho, Chiyoda 13.1 km
Big Boy is a tiny cafe/bar on a side street off the main road through Jinbocho, the old book shop...
2F 1-52-1 Jimbocho, Kanda, Chiyoda-Ku 13.1 km
03-3294-362103-3294-3621
All used records (and a few CDs) here with vocals & swing jazz being the specialty. Lots of o...
Jazz Nutty inside.JPG
1-17-4 Nishi-Waseda, Shinjuku-Ku 13.25 km
03-3200-373003-3200-3730
Jazz Nutty opened in 2009 next to the campus of Waseda University. The wonderful Mr.& Mrs. ...
Sasaki Bldg, B1, 2-8-3 Takadanobaba, Shinjuku-Ku 13.75 km
Gate One is a small bar run by the husband and wife guitar-vocal duo Hashimoto-san and Kajiwara-s...
Jazz Pub Michaux inside.jpg
3-11-12 2F, Shinjuku 13.75 km
CLOSED Fall 2013. Music fans know that Japan is a country filled with dedicated, serious, almost ...
Intro outside.jpg
2-14-8 Takadanobaba, Shinjuku-Ku 13.84 km
Jazz SPOT Intro in Takadanobaba is a tiny basement bar about 2 minutes walk from the station. I...
B1, 3-23-5 Takadanobaba, Shinjuku-Ku 14.24 km
Hot House is the world’s smallest jazz club! Maybe 8 or 10 customers max in this place. Mak...
Milestone inside.JPG
Igari Bldg., 1-23-9 Takadanobaba, Shinjuku-Ku 14.24 km
Milestone sadly closed its doors at the end of July, 2019 after 45 years in business. As the nam...
Houdenasu.JPG
New Gold Bldg, 2F, 3-6-10 Shinjuku-Ku 14.4 km
Houdenasu (ほうでなす) is a small 2nd floor bar located right in the heart of Shinjuku 3-Chome,...
Cygnus.JPG
B2F 8-6-18 Ginza, Chuo 14.86 km
Cygnus is the sister club to Aries in Ueno but a bit more upscale. Live shows three times a night...
1-8 Yotsuya, Shinjuku-Ku 14.91 km
Eagle is really the prototypical jazz cafe. It opened in 1967 in Yotsuya, right down the street...
IMG_0114.JPG
東京都千代田区有楽町2-3-6 マスヤビルB1F 14.98 km
Kiri is a wonderful little basement spot in between Hibiya, Ginza and Yurakucho stations. It̵...
New Dug.jpg
Dug
3-15-12 Shinjuku 15.22 km
The ‘New Dug’ in Shinjuku is a cafe/bar with a complex back story. It was the annex...
Chome 34-8, Shinjuku-ku, Shinjuku 15.41 km
Someday moved from Shinbashi to Shinjuku last fall. I haven’t been to the new location yet,...
Maruha Bldg. B1, 1-1-7 Kabukicho, Shinjuku 15.48 km
03-3204-202803-3204-2028
200 types of Bourbon, cool jazz playing on the system. That about sums it up. Small place, go alo...
Shiramuren.jpg
1 Chome−1−10, Kabukicho, Shinjuku 15.51 km
How can I describe this place? It’s small, dark and old; owner Otsuka-san was surly and u...
photo(14).JPG
Ebisu Kaikan Bldg, 4F Kabukicho 1-10-5. Shinjuku, Tokyo 15.56 km
In 2013 Black Sun moved from it’s long time home in Nishi-Shinjuku to the heart of Kabukich...
Kissa Sakaiki inside.JPG
2-4, Dai Kyo Machi, Shinjuku-Ku 15.56 km
Kissa Sakaiki gives me hope that the spirit of the Japanese jazz-kissaten will survive. Owner F...
Royal Mansion B1, Shinjuku 5-1-1, Shinjuku-Ku 15.56 km
Old basement club, lots of vocalists on the schedule. Mellow vibe and not too expensive.
Narushisu inside.jpg
2F, 1 Chome−13−6, Kabukicho, Shinjuku 15.56 km
I found this tiny gem of a jazz cafe amidst the chaos that is Kabukicho in Shinjuku. It is a smal...
Jazz Tweeter outside.JPG
1-19-11 B1F Shinjuku, Shinjuku-Ku 15.62 km
Jazz Tweeter was opened a couple of years ago by long-time hotel restaurant chef Ishizuka-san. He...
3-7-15 Akasaka, Minato-Ku 15.62 km
Hashi no Shita (橋 の下 means “Under The Bridge” in Japanese) is a place I found in...
B-Flat.jpg
6-6-4, Sakae Bldg B1, Akasaka, Minato-ku 15.62 km
The B Flat in Akasaka is a great straight-ahead jazz club in an area without many other options f...
index.jpg
Shinjuku 2-12-4, Shinjuku-Ku, Tokyo, 160-0022 15.63 km
The Pit Inn remains near, or at the top, of any list of live jazz venues in the Tokyo area. 2015 ...
curtisinside.jpg
Shinjuku-Ku, 3-chome 8-5 15.65 km
Curtis is one of my favorite bars in Tokyo. As the name gives away, this is a soul music bar with...
FS Bldg 4F, 3-20-6 Shinjuku 15.68 km
This is a quiet piano bar with live music nightly though more BGM style, not really a live club. ...
4 Chome−3−1, Higashinakano, Nakano 15.71 km
Neighborhood cafe/bar/small live club. This is the kind of place you really only find in Japan; i...
Jazz Room Stick inside.jpg
3 Chome−22, Shinjuku-ku, Shinjuku 15.74 km
Jazz Room Stick is a great old jazz joint in the heart of Shinjuku, located almost directly beh...
ct_image.jpg
5-1-2 Akasaka Engel Bldg 2F, Minato-Ku, Tokyo 15.75 km
Volontaire moved to its current location in Akasaka a few years ago after more than three decades...
Hals Jazz outside.jpg
Daikan Plaza B-306, 7-10-17 Nishi-Shinjuku, Shinjuku-ku 15.79 km
It’s all about vinyl at Hal’s Jazz. Owner Ikeda-san keeps a few racks of cds in the c...
Old+Cat_-2.jpg
3-26-2 Shinjuku Shinjuku Tokyo 15.86 km
03-3354-935403-3354-9354
The Old Blind Cat in Shinjuku has a long and fascinating history, as much as any jazz bar in town...
matchgreen.jpg
Nishi-shinjuku 1-4-20, Shinjuku-Ku 15.92 km
The Vagabond is a classic joint right next to the West Exit of Shinjuku station. I think the revi...
Screen Shot 2017-11-05 at 15.46.05.png
1124-1 Masuo, Kashiwa, Chiba Prefecture 15.93 km
Nefertiti lives up to its very lofty name as it’s one of the finest jazz spots in the entir...
IMG_2862.JPG
B1, 3-35-12 Shinjuku, Shinjuku-Ku 15.94 km
Jazz Pepe is as old school as it gets. Opened in 1969 by the now 77 year old Okuma-san, Pepe is a...
Samurai inside.JPG
Mori Bldg. 5F, 3-35-5, Shinjuku-Ku 15.98 km
Samurai is located in the building that used to house the Shinjuku Pit-Inn before they moved to t...
Pearl Bar outside.JPG
Higashi Shin Bldg , 4F, 3-21-7, Shinjuku, Shunjuku-Ku 16.08 km
Pearl Bar is a real sleek “grown up” jazz bar in the center of Shinjuku. Lots of cock...
Numabukuro 1-34-4 B1, Nakano-Ku 16.28 km
Organ Jazz Club: the name gives it away, doesn’t it? One of the few places in town with a r...
b.JPG
102 Dai-Ichi Mitomi Bldg 102, 1-30-6 Arai, Nakano-Ku 16.52 km
Rompercicci is a fairly new jazz cafe/bar just a short ten-minute walk from Nakano Station. It...
1-36-12 Yoyogi Shibuya 16.55 km
Sister-branch of Naru in Ochanomizu
Jazz Spot Dolphy.JPG
2F Dai Ichi Nishimura Bldg. 2F, 2-17-4 Miyagawa-cho, Naka-Ku 16.63 km
Jazz Spot Dolphy opened in 1980 but moved to its current location in 1990 and has kept up a ste...
Cafe Ellington outside.jpg
Asagaya 3-37 16.63 km
Note: Closed in early 2015. I guess he couldn’t get many customers after all… Cafe El...
Tom inside.JPG
Inaba Bldg , 2F Asagaya-Minami 3-28-31 16.63 km
03-3220-127503-3220-1275
吐夢 (Pronounced “To-mu” or just “Tom”) is unique in a couple of ways. ...
Ribbon outside.jpg
Watanabe Bldg B2 Ginza 8-6-19 16.63 km
The Ribbon is what most people would think of when hearing the words “Ginza Jazz”. It...
Ikebukuro Roudou Kijun Kyoukai Bldg B2, Ikebukuro 1-8-8 16.63 km
Jazz, Funk & Soul are on tap at Miles’ Cafe. The Ikebukuro area is not known for having...
Scratch inside.JPG
Marco Polo Bldg 2F, 1-8-14 Hon-Chi, Kichijoji 16.63 km
Scratch is a quiet cafe/bar that’s been in heart of Kichijoji since 1974. They open durin...
Stardust inside.JPG
Minami Bldg B1 Asagaya-Kita 2-13-5 16.63 km
03-3337-132503-3337-1325
Masuda-san sadly passed away in 2012. Stardust is an old bar, first opened in Asagaya in 1971 ...
Small Hours Cafe & Bar outside.jpg
Wako Bldg 1F 1-62-4 Kanda Jimbocho Chiyoda-Ku 16.63 km
03-5283-711703-5283-7117
Closed 2015 Small Hours is a new cafe/bar located in the back streets between Ochanomizu, Jimbo...
1−28−9, Shibuya, Yoyogi 16.75 km
Music Bar is part of the new development Yoyogi Village (read more about it here. It’s no...
Kashiwagi Mura2 7-20-12, Nishi-Shinjuku 16.81 km
Swanky live club, heavy on the vocalists. Enjoyable but a bit soft for my tastes. It’s the ...
6-13-9 Minami Aoyama, Minato-Ku 16.87 km
Body & Soul is a large club with really good food, though the music can be a bit mainstream f...
Jikan Ryokou outside.jpg
5-56-15 Nakano, Nakano-Ku 16.89 km
03-3389-798003-3389-7980
Jikan Ryokou (the sign is in Japanese 時間旅行, it means “Time Travel”) is simply won...
Annex Bldg. 4F, Ropoongi 4-11-5, Minato-Ku 16.93 km
Very supper-club type place, most nights featuring vocal-led bands. The food is good, the service...
Hama Roppongi Bldg. 5F, 6-2-35 Roppongi, Minato-Ku 17.04 km
Always top quality live jazz at Alfie, mostly local acts. Really nice interior but be ready to p...
IMG_0291.JPG
Chiyo Bldg, B1, 5-9-22 Dai 2, Roppongi 17.04 km
Electrik Jinja opened in April 2012 and quickly became the hippest  spot in Roppongi. It’s ...
Nakano Pignose  inside.jpg
B-113 Lions Mansion Nakano Dai-5 B-113, Arai 1-14-16, Nakano-Ku 17.13 km
I found this small-even-by-Tokyo-standards “piano bar” while lost in Nakano one nig...
IMG_0276.JPG
東京都 港区 六本木 7-18-16 川久保ビル 1F・4F 17.31 km
03-3401-626203-3401-6262
Bar Spice is a classic little Soul music bar overlooking Roppongi-Dori, right across from the Rop...
Genius.jpg
スズノビル1F, 3 Chome-2-10 Honchō, Nakano-ku 17.32 km
03-3372-347103-3372-3471
Genius was one of Shibuya’s more famous jazz cafes for more than 20 years before increasing...
Jingumae, 3 Chome−5−2 17.34 km
Gekko Sabou (月光茶房 “moon-light-tea-chamber”, a wonderful name) is not a jazz cafe/...
IMG_0284(1).JPG
Azeria Bldg 1F, 1-3-6 Nishi-Azabu, Minato-Ku, Tokyo 17.49 km