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Irish Sessions in Chicago

We would like to provide a source for information about Irish Sessions in Chicago. Whenever I used to travel I was always trying to find Irish Sessions in my destination city. It was sometimes a very interesting process. It also had it's rewards, like finding the Burren, in Boston. Well, we'd like to help make the process of finding a Session in Chicago easier for both locals and visitors. The places that host Sessions are the "pure drop". They provide an unique venue for both professional and amatuer musicians. These establishments give you the opportunity to contribute to traditional culture and have a pint of Guinness. A pretty good combination in my book.

If your simply looking for place with Irish or Traditional entertainment then you might want check Carolyn Andre's web site. She has a page that lists Irish and other shows in Chicago. Carolyn's Chicago Celtic Show List

Abbey Pub

3420 W. Grace St.
(773) 478-4408

Session on Sunday from 4 pm til 8 pm

John Daly, fiddle, and Kieran O'Hare, uillean pipes, run the session. John recently shared the spotlight with Liz Carroll and Tommy Peoples at a concert at St. Pat's High School and has a new CD. Check it out.

Barn dances on Monday. Open Stage on Tuesdays. The Abbey generally has live music most evenings. They also bring in "name" entertainers on a fairly regular basis.

Celtic Crossings

751 N. Clark St.
(312) 337-1005

Session on Sunday from 5 pm til 9 pm

Chief O'Neill's

3471 N. Elston
(773) 473-5263

Session on Tuesday and Sunday

Brendan McKinney plays and sometimes leads the Session. Chief O'Neill's also has an Accoustic Open Mic night every Wednesday.


3741 N. Southport
(773) 975-0600

Session on Tuesday at 9 pm

The Session is run by Sean Cleland. Sean also used to do a session here on Sunday afternoons which was very beginner friendly and included a number of his fiddle students. I'm not sure if he's still doing it. Call and check.

Sean now plays with Jimmy Keane and Pat Broaders in a group called Bohola. They have a CD out, of the same name, that's truly excellent.

Healy's Westside

7217 W. Madison St.
Forest Park
(708) 366-4277

Session on Tuesday at 8 pm

Tim Healy plays the tin whistle and sometimes leads the Session. Healy's has live music every Saturday night.

The Hidden Shamrock

2723 Halsted St.
(773) 883-0304

Session on Sunday from 3 pm til 6 pm

Irish American Heritage Center

4626 N. Knox
(773) 282-7035

Session on Wednesday at 7 pm (in room 302)

The Session is run by Pat McPartland, a flute player, and another fellow whose name I have unfortunely forgotten (please e-mail me if you know, so I can post it). This is a beginner-friendly session.

The Heritage Center also has live music in their Pub, the Fifth Provence on Friday and Saturday starting at 9 pm.

The Irish Oak

3511 N. Clark St.
(773) 936-6669

Session on Wednesday at 8 pm

Irish Times

8869 Burlington Ave.
(708) 485-8787

Session on Wednesday at 8 pm

Keegan's Pub

10618 S. Western Ave.
Evergreen Park
(773) 233-6829

Session on Wednesday 9 pm til 11 pm

Kerry Piper

7900 Joliet Road
(630) 325-3732

Session on Wednesday from 7 pm til 11 pm

The Session is run by Murphy Roche. The Kerry Piper has live music every Thursday thru Sunday.

Limerick Public House

13404 S. Western Av
Blue Island
(708) 388-6755

Session on Wednesday at 8 pm

The Session is run by Eileen McLane and David James. Thursday nights the Limerick has an open "mic" for both electric and acoustic.


4328 W. Irving Park Rd.
(773) 725-1800

Sessions on Thursday and Sunday Evening

Nevin's Pub

1450 Sherman Ave.
(847) 869-0450

Session on Sunday at 2:30 pm

Tom Nevinís also owns two Pubs in Ireland. Nevin's has live Irish entertainment on weekends.


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