Centerstage - Chicago's Original City Guide

Virtual L ®

Virtual L Locations Near Lee's Unleaded BluesWhat's near Lee's Unleaded Blues?

in South Side or 69th on the Red line

Chicago Bars
By Styles
A to Z Directory
Nightlife Guides
User Reviews
Chicago Music Venues
Music Venues A to Z
Who's Who in Music
Music Event Listings
Articles & Guides
User Reviews
Find an error?
Are you the owner?
Tell Us Here

CRUMB and FestFile is Centerstage Chicago's Weekly E-Newsletter.
Enter your email to get
our weekly newsletter:

Lee's Unleaded Blues

View Map7401 S. South Chicago Ave., Chicago
Tel: (773) 493-3477
Details Find What Else Is Nearby Lee's Unleaded Blues User Reviews

Editorial Review of Lee's Unleaded Blues

You're just as likely to see men topping off their suspender-and-fur-coat regalia with Fedoras as you are to spot clubgoers sporting White Sox caps at this South Side blues club. Ranging from R&B to reggae to pure blues, the sounds get bigger throughout the night as unexpected guest musicians are invited to "sit in" for a few numbers.

A real live juke joint, Lee's Unleaded Blues resides near virtually nothing, and for those who rarely tread on South Side territory, it's a trek and then some just getting there. But slide into the free parking lot directly behind the club, roll your fine self in by 8:30 p.m., and you're assured cushy seating and a good view of the stage with no cover charge to speak of (though there's an easy-to-fulfill two-drink minimum). While there's a good amount of swank and sass ricocheting between the black-painted and mirror-adorned walls and deep red carpeting, there's a sense of down-home familiarity wafting in the air. Find the current owner, Stanley Davis, cozying up to the bar on any given night. He says his "girls" make every drink by hand and the well-seasoned doorman is always looking out for you.

The crowd, which ranges from University of Chicago students to retired folk, shows its appreciation with hip shaking and shimmying, especially when the singers mingle on the floor mid-performance. The crowd really gets going on Thursdays, Davis says, when two R&B and blues singers reveal their stripes as a burlesque dancer and a body contortionist.

About 30-years-old (including the days the club was know as Queen Bee's) and going strong, Lee's Unleaded is no secret to well-informed international travelers and music-loving Chicagoans; the entryway boasts a showcase of framed articles that feature Lee's, including "National Geographic" and "Men's Journal."

Centerstage Reviewer: Jessica Herman

User Reviews

Read other people's reviews and post your own opinion about Lee's Unleaded Blues too!


8 p.m.-2 a.m. Friday and Sunday; 8 p.m.-3 a.m. Saturday; Music starts at 9 p.m. every day except Saturday, at 10 p.m. closed Monday-Thursday

Directions to Lee's Unleaded Blues

Our directions are included with our maps of Lee's Unleaded Blues
Lee's Unleaded Blues was mentioned in these articles...

Soul and the City, 9/8/09
Take a tour of Chicago's soulful eateries, churches and music clubs.

Ask Centerstage: Blues Hotels, 7/30/09
Where to stay if you've come to hear Chicago's favorite music.

You've Got the Blues, 6/3/09
Everything you need to know about the 2009 Chicago Blues Festival.

Blues Clues, 4/17/09
We pick the best Chicago blues clubs for every occasion.

Where Are the Best Chicago Blues Clubs?, 1/21/09
Feelin' the blues never felt so good.

Virtual L: 69th (Red), 11/7/08
Places worth a visit in a changing 'hood.

Cheap Bastard Nadia Oehlsen, 3/5/07
Having a ball without spending a dime in Chicago.

Dave Jemilo, 2/12/07
The Green Mill owner along with his club.


chicago, metromix