Alright, we may know where to go for sunset drinks, where to have coffee and where to go dancing in and around Seminyak, but where to find the best live music venues? Sure, there is lots of live music around but for those of you with ears for the good stuff, tired of hearing Guns ‘n Roses- or, even worse, Bon Jovi covers, this article is for you. Music lovers on the hunt for some underground music scenes and amazing musician in Bali, check out the following places:
The Orchard Bar
Let’s start with my personal favourite: The Orchard Bar. This pub is hidden away in a quiet gang in the centre of Seminyak and it is by far, the coolest live music venue around! At The Orchard you can expect nothing but original bands playing their guts out on that tiny stage under the stars. The Orchard has a lovely ‘old brown cafe’ feel and they serve yummy Irish Kilkenny beers (from the tap!!!). Live music happens on Tuesdays, Thursday and Saturdays and the gigs usually kick ass. Ranging from good authentic Rock, Jazz, Reggae, free improvisations and unexpected jam sessions, whatever is on and whatever happens- it rocks! The Orchard Bar, being an pub, after all, has got 4 types of beers on the tap and they serve them in pints, too.
Ryoshi House of Jazz
Only the best Jazz musicians in Bali are invited to play at Ryoshi’s one and only ‘ House of Jazz’ in the centre of Seminyak. Upstairs, beneath the soaring thatched ‘alang alang’ rooftop, there is a big stage where the magic happens on Monday, Wednesday and Friday evenings. Amazingly talented jazz musicians hit the stage and they will turn your Japanese sushi dinner into a late-night party. Who said jazz is boring? At Ryoshi House of Jazz, you will be blown away! Live music starts at 9.30 pm, starting easy and harmoniously. After the break, things may get wild with great guest musicians and the whole shebang. You may even find yourself dancing in front of the stage if you don’t watch out. For music lovers who thought you weren’t into ‘dinner jazz’, Ryoshi just might change your mind.
This is a bit of a secret – a true hidden gem located just outside of Seminyak, where Umalas ends and Kerobokan begins. The live music at Wayan’s Homefood takes place in the inner courtyard of an authentic Balinese house. The ambience is homey and friendly. Sit down for dinner and some cold beers and wait for the live band to arrive. The informal atmosphere invites to interact with the musicians or even join in for a jam.
At the Italian restaurant Zibiru, you can not only munch on delicious farm-to-table, home-cooked Italian food, but you can also enjoy easy, laid-back Jazz music under the starry night sky. With its charming garden, talented musicians and open jam sessions, Zibiru totally charms you out! There are live jazz bands and sometimes even awesome opera performances 3 nights a week on Wednesdays, Fridays and Saturdays. On Friday evenings, performances turn into open jam sessions, so bring your instrument and jam along with the Antoine Trio at ‘the Z’ in the centre of Seminyak.
Espresso Bar is located right in the buzz of Kuta among trashy nightclubs and such, but this place has still got some charm. I love to come here once in a while for a Bintang or two, reminiscing about my first trip to Bali. Yes, you will probably hear some classic covers like ‘stairway to heaven’ and Sweet Child O’ Mine but at Espresso Bar, you can give in to the guilty pleasure of singing along and just have fun with it. Espresso Bar immediately draws your attention, with bands playing right at the entrance of the bar, half inside the bar and half out on the street. Espresso Bar is a great place for locals, tourists and expats to meet and that in the dirty nightlife jungle of Kuta. Go there on a Monday or Thursday night when Rhythm Voice Band plays, they rock the place down.
This Rock ‘n Roll Bar is a great alternative music hub in Canggu featuring local indie and punk bands. Wednesday and Saturdays are rocking it hard and on Mondays, anyone can join in for it is open-mic night. This is an underground hang-out like you want them to be: smoky and gloomy, loud, busy and alive until the wee hours of the night.
The Straw hut
The Straw Hut is a place to check out on Friday and Wednesday evenings, after sunset. This cool, centrally located family restaurant, invites original bands to come and play, sharing good vibes and great music. After the band, followed the DJ to keep the party going till late.
This is more of a special mention as Titik Temu is more about coffee than it is about music, but it certainly is a very cool little coffee shop hidden away from the crowds in Petitenget. They got a charming little courtyard, rooftop sitting areas and in the weekend, Tiku Temu features great live music to go with your cup of black goodness. It is a hidden gem when it comes down to coffee AND music!
Header image via Straw Hut Bali