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2016 Village Award Winner: Smalls Jazz Club

Off the Grid is highlighting the 2016 Village Awards winners in the lead up to the June 14th Annual Meeting & Award Ceremony. Click here for more information about the event and to RSVP. Read about other awardees here. Today we look Smalls Jazz Club, one of the premiere remaining successful Greenwich Village jazz clubs.

Smalls Jazz Club, located at 183 West 10th Street, has nurtured many emerging and established jazz musicians over the last twenty-plus years, and has become a mecca for jazz fans and artists from around the world.

Smalls Jazz Club owners Spike Wilner and Mitch
Smalls Jazz Club owners Spike Wilner and Mitch Borden

Smalls is owned by Spike Wilner and Mitch Borden. Mitch opened the club in 1994 as a BYOB place for jazz lovers, motivated by a love of jazz rather than profit. The club closed in 2002 and was an unsuccessful Brazilian bar under a new owner. It switched back to jazz in 2004 with Mitch as the manager. Spike and Mitch eventually became the owners and managers in 2011.

Smalls’ interior during a show

Smalls live streams every performance for free over their website. They maintain an extensive archive of every performance going back to 2007. Those archives are accessible by subscription, with the proceeds shared by the club and the artists whose recordings are accessed. The partners recently opened a companion venue nearby called Mezzrow, which is similar to Smalls, but is solely dedicated to piano jazz. One admission buys entry to both clubs on the same night.

GVSHP is thrilled to present Smalls Jazz Club with a 2016 Village Award for their nurturing support for live jazz with free live streaming, a performance archive, revenue-sharing with their artists, and the fundraisers the club sponsors for musicians. Join us on June 14th to honor Smalls.

Click here to read more about jazz in the Village.

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