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Something strange is going on….

Yes, something strange is going on….. and wonderful. All of a sudden, open mic or jam nights are springing up all over the place, and I don’t know why.

The Tuesday night jazz jam in Michelangelo’s Bar, Phuket Town, has now been joined there by some ad hoc Rock, Blues and Pop jam nights. The Coconut Rawai live music venue has had a very organized and well-attended Friday open mic night now for a couple of months. This started about the same time as one on a Sunday in Kokonuss Restaurant in Kamala. Pop Up Phuket has done a few over the past months. No doubt there are others elsewhere that have slipped under my radar, but why is this all suddenly happening right now?

A cynic would probably say, it’s just bar owners wanting live music for free, but I think that might be unfair. I think there is another reason, a more positive reason …

Forty years ago, I remember being a member of my home village’s Male Voice Choir (second tenor). It was fun meeting up for a practice, then a beer after and, occasionally, a performance somewhere. OK, I like to sit on my porch playing my cigar box guitar, but this reminds me that music need not be a solitary occupation – it can be a very sociable activity too.

I admit I don’t get out as much as I like. It all comes down to declining energy – I’m not so young anymore! It’s all too easy to stay in at night with the wife, cat, some beer and Netflix. However, I find myself making every effort to get out and see my muso friends performing. Meeting up with such valued friends beats Netflix hands over! And there are a good number of very talented amateur musicians in Phuket who enjoy playing and hanging out with each other and are happy to do so more now in a bar.

So, I may be wrong, but I think this new open mic phenomenon is mainly being driven by the social needs of musicians post-pandemic rather than bar owners being tight with money. If so, that gives me hope that, for us musos at least, things in this post-pandemic world are not growing colder, but are happily warming up!

And perhaps this all has something to do with Netflix’s share price plunging recently too!

2 replies on “Something strange is going on….”

All part of the ecosystem : musicians lay the groundwork,then someone writes about them , then some smart cookie forms an agency , then another forms a label, then local radio gets in, then some lucky preferably pretty face becomes a big star😊

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