SideWalk Cafe

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The SideWalk Cafe
Address94 Avenue A
LocationNew York, NY 10009, USA
Coordinates40°43′32″N 73°59′02″W / 40.72546°N 73.98376°W / 40.72546; -73.98376Coordinates: 40°43′32″N 73°59′02″W / 40.72546°N 73.98376°W / 40.72546; -73.98376
Seating typewas open 24 hours known not only as nightclub but bar restaurant offered pool table downstairs free of charge all hours breakfast specials coiscant and carpaccio $3 various others trademark drink frozen mudslide biker mural on side of building was portrait of locals such as Chip English drummer of Luna Chicks and favored by Debbie Harry and Joey Romone low profile local staple

The SideWalk Cafe is a music venue and restaurant/cafe in East Village, New York City founded in 1985. It has become a known venue for its underground music scene, and in particular, is known as being the center for Anti-folk in the United States. It offers an eclectic mix of local and national acts ranging from DIY, avant garde music, indie rock, and jazz to pop music and electronic music. The venue also plays host to poetry readings, comedy and live-band karaoke. The New York Times referred to the SideWalk Cafe and its music scene as a "gift to the neighborhood".[1]

A number of well-known acts performed at the Sidewalk at the beginning of their career including Regina Spektor, Lana Del Rey, Hamell on Trial, Lach, The Moldy Peaches. The Sidewalk Cafe is also home to an open mic night that is one of the oldest and largest traditional open mics in the city,[1] garnering the name "the king of NYC open-mic nights."[2] The open mic was founded by Lach but is currently being run by Somer Bingham. It also hosts the bi-annual New York Antifolk Festival, which features the largest gathering of anti-folk musicians in the nation.[3][4]

The Sidewalk Cafe is also associated with a number of indie labels including Kale Records, Olive Juice Music (started by Major Matt Mason USA, though now defunct) and Weemayk Music.

Artists that perform regularly at the Sidewalk Cafe include: Elastic No-No Band, Dots Will Echo and Schwervon!.


  1. ^ a b Puglisi, Joe (2010-09-28). "First Person - At the Sidewalk Café". New York Times. Retrieved 2012-08-21.
  2. ^ Ruehl, Kim. "Open Mic Nights in New York City". Retrieved 2012-08-21.
  3. ^ Light, Alan (2006-08-11). "How Does It Feel, Antifolkies, to Have a Home, Not Be Unknown?". New York Times. Retrieved 2012-08-21.
  4. ^ McKinley, James C. (2011-09-23). "Staying Undefined at the Antifolk Festival, and That's Fine". New York Times. Retrieved 2012-08-21.

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