City: New York
Address: 425 Lafayette St.
Coolest Feature: Its dark, hole-in-the-wall aura makes you feel like you're in a secluded jazz club
By January of 2007, Amy Winehouse's second album, Back to Black, had been dominating the U.K. thanks to the pain that Winehouse's voice infused over Mark Ronson's masterful '60s-esque production. She was on the incline, but it was her performance at Joe's Pub in Noho—her American debut—that made her a star. The performance drew the likes of Jay-Z, and Winehouse captivated her very first American crowd with those now classic ballads of lost love. It was just another moment in the history of Joe's Pub.
Since opening in 1998, Joe's Pub has been one of the most respected venues in New York City for artists that have been already been stamped by the industry and those still looking to crack the code. Its hole-in-the wall aesthetic made it famous, but a 2011 renovation allowed for increased capacity, making it easier for everyone in attendance to catch the action on stage. Often you'll find that it's the smaller venues like Joe's Pub where untapped talent is discovered, where artists on the verge take the next step in their careers and established acts return to pay homage. It's a must-attend if you're in New York; you never know which star-in-the-making you'll catch next.