“Sing us a song, you’re the piano man,” sang Billy Joel back in 1973, regaling us with his melancholic, yet memorable ode to the guys sitting behind the black and white keys at every neighborhood bar in Smalltown, U.S.A. Boston may be a far cry from Smalltown, but it too has its fair share of bars dedicated to the piano man and all his friends. For those seeking a fun night out on the town, singing along to old favorites while a seasoned pro tickles those ivories, here are five highly recommended hot spots.

(credit: howlatthemoon.com)

Howl Boston
184 High St.
Boston, MA 02110

Open seven nights a week until 2 a.m., Howl At The Moon is a nightly dueling piano show which hinges on raucous audience participation, and specializes in cover songs from the 70s, 80s and 90s. Howl’s ace pianists, guitarists and percussionists pride themselves on a “you shout it, we’ll play it” mentality when it comes to covering the hits, utilizing everything from Lady Gaga to Billy Joel or anything else within their expansive playlists. Howl is a big celebration, serving up dinner and drinks while both staff and clientele join forces in true piano party fashion for birthdays, corporate events, bachelor and bachelorette parties and much, much more. It’s a totally unique experience that shouldn’t be missed by anyone who longs for that center stage thrill.

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Photo Credit: Jacob Wirth Restaurant

Jacob Wirth
31-37 Stuart St.
Boston, MA 02116

This downtown gem has been packing ’em in since 1868, lending startling credence to Jacob Wirth’s claim and reputation as “a Boston favorite.” Specializing in Euro-styled, German cuisine and good times, the entertainment aspect of Jacob Wirth centers around its piano nights, with the bar’s “Friday Night Sing-a-Long” event from 8 p.m. to midnight. Since 1988, pianist Mel Stiller has been gracing Jacob Wirth’s with his talent and wide repertoire of song hits from the 50s, 60s and 70s. Stiller and Wirth’s even provide an expansive, 500 song lyric book for shy or uncertain singers who still want to try their luck at rock stardom for a night. The party has proved so popular that Jacob Wirth’s has even enlisted fellow piano man Patrick Durkin to handle the 80s and 90s hits on Thursday nights.

Related: Boston’s Best Live Blues

Photo Credit: Top of the Hub via Facebook

Top of the Hub
Prudential Tower
800 Boylston St.
Boston, MA 02199

For those with a finer appreciation of music and the arts, and for tourists seeking a fantastic, enviable view of the city, this classy establishment offers some of the most precise and exquisite jazz piano in Boston. The music comes courtesy of jazz pianist Steve Soares and his trio as well as the Lee Childs Group, who feature within their ranks former Berkley Professor of Piano Kurt Wenzel. Every night of the week, Top of the Hub offers up mellow, relaxing and often improvised free jazz for the distinguished drinker and diner seeking to get away, if only for a night, the city’s unique hustle ‘n bustle. To top it off, all of this can be enjoyed free of charge with no tickets required, although there is a $24 minimum for those choosing to eschew sitting at the lounge bar in favor of a table.

Photo Credit: Thinkstock.com

The Continental
266 Broadway Rt. 1
Saugus, MA 01906

Looking for a nice place to take the parents, in-laws or grandparents? The Continental in Saugus proudly boasts a piano bar and live entertainment six nights a week, Tuesday through Sunday. Featuring both bar dining and restaurant accommodations, The Continental specializes in warm, friendly atmosphere and great food. You’ll find plenty of free appetizers available while a revolving cast of musical characters take clientele requests from the 90s, all the way back to the 30s. In other words, bone up on your swing dancing and dust off that zoot suit, for The Continental promises a rockin’ time for guests of all ages.

George Pacheco has been writing professionally about arts and entertainment for over a decade. A graduate of the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth, George currently resides in a humble New England home with his wife, cat and massive music and film collection. His work can be found at Examiner.com.