Latin grooves add to thrill of the night


Victor M takes the stage at Sid’s TTDI on Sunday nights. He also performs regularly at other venues throughout the Klang Valley.

WHILE rock and pop have their firm followers, there is more than just that on the Klang Valley music scene as we continue in the transition to endemic phase of Covid-19.

These staples may serve to keep the crowds going but there is still plenty to choose from for more niche offerings like jazz and even country.

With nightlife now off the negative list, musicians are transitioning back to the stage, and the quality still shines through after investing time in online shows and busking.

Here is a selection of venues where you can relax, grab a cold drink and enjoy a night out with some music thrown in for good measure.

BLUE at EQEQ, Equatorial Plaza,

Jalan Sultan Ismail, KL

Tel: 03-2789 7800

A bespoke speakeasy bar, Blue at EQ boasts a spectacular view of both the Twin Towers and KL Tower.

Set high above the ground in Sky51, one of the city’s newest rooftop dining destinations, this place serves up more than just the usual DJ fare, though there is a good deal of action on that front as well. A RM50+ access fee applies for live music nights, and there is a smart casual dress code.

Upcoming performances at Blue include:

July 15 & 16: Talented jazz chanteuse Dani Komari takes the stage to entertain. She’s played several major festivals in the country, including the IP Jazz Festival in Johor, and the Publika Jazz Fest in KL. She was also one of the few Malaysian acts to perform at the World Youth Jazz Festival in 2019.

July 22 & 23: The ever-refreshing and talented Ida Mariana joins the effervescent Hady Afro on stage for a good time.

July 29 & 30: Singer Angelyne Ong serves up nights of great grooves to accompany an evening out in the heart of the city.

BOBO KL65-2, Jalan Bangkung,

Bangsar, KL

Tel: 012-263 8603

Another live space in Bangsar for music fans to get into the groove.

Tuesday nights are Gitar ‘n Jiwa nights with DoubleAze taking the stage most recently. Six nights of great acts here so there is something for everyone.

This weekend, on Friday and Saturday get into some Latin fun with Akz’s Samba Celebration, featuring guest singers Irma Seleman and Ida Mariana. Get you tickets at www.cloudtix.co/bobokl

JAO TIM61, Jalan Sultan, KL

Tel: 03-2022 3897

Website: www.jaotim.comAn elegant venue in the heart of the city, Jao Tim absolutely drips with old world charm but also serves up an interesting array of offerings. Now also stepping up as an events space, the outlet gives life to a whole new set of musical offerings that are just that much different to standout.

Friday: David Soh and Jayvine Ramma take centre stage for a night of John Mayer and more. They will be accompanied by Sulvia Wong on keys, Khairul Aiman on bass, Ross Farren on guitar and the talented Arthur Kam on drums. Tickets are priced at RM90 and entry is for fully vaccinated individuals.

Saturday: On July 16, Jo and Terence Ling present the Soul of East & West for a night of fusion fun.

Tickets are priced at RM90 and still available at time of writing.

Sunday: This Sunday, it’s jazz all the way, with an afternoon of jazz jamming led by Afrojakz. Tickets are RM35, unless you plan to jam, and then it’ll be RM10 or a first drink charge.

Tuesday: On July 19, get in the mood for some smooth grooves, with Ida Mariana joining the WVC jazz ensemble on the Jao Tim stage. Tickets are priced at RM90 and still available on Jao Tim’s website at time of writing.

Crane KL78, Jalan Sultan, KL

WhatsApp: 013-218 5712

Website: cranekl.com

Another Chinatown hotspot, Crane KL is all about a having good time in a heritage building. Good selection of cocktails and great food add to the charm of the ambience here. Also features a great selection of music from Wednesday to Saturday.

BATS Bangsar14, Jalan Telawi 2,

Bangsar, KL

WhatsApp: 012-969 8557

One of the stand-outs on the Bangsar block, at least where live music is concerned, there’s something for everyone here with a selection of great musicians taking the stage regularly.

Also get ready for a treat as co-owner, and first Malaysian Idol winner, Jaclyn Victor occasionally graces the stage.

Piano man Vishnu Shakhti is a fixture here and there is music seven days a week. For a full list of musicians performing here, check out https://www.facebook.com/bats.restaurant.bar

Griffin TTDI

11, Lorong Datuk Sulaiman 7, TTDI,

Kuala Lumpur Tel: 012-795 5514

Neatly tucked away in Taman Tun Dr Ismail is another neighbourhood pub that serves as a great place to chill and let your hair loose. From the occasional barbecue to live music three nights a week, Griffin TTDI serves up something for everyone.

Thursday: The Men of Steele get their groove on with a selection of everything from classic rock to golden oldies.

Friday: D’Constantly get the party going with a blast of high-energy vibes from the stage.

Saturday: Saturday nights are a little more laid-back with crooner Victor M taking the stage to sing away the blues.

Sid’s Pub at TTDI34, Lorong Rahim Kajai 14,

TTDI, Kuala Lumpur

Tel: 016-964 0786

Another almost household name on the bar scene, the Sid’s group of pubs have been making their mark in Klang Valley for many years.

The Taman Tun Dr Ismail outlet has a new management and serves up some great Irish-themed pub grub, live sports and, of course, music on Sundays, with Mark Renesh and Victor M taking it in turns to get the crowds crooning and dancing along to their beats. The best part – it kicks off early so be here from 7.30pm onwards to have a blast.

Escobar by Loco TTDI11a,

Jalan Wan Kadir 2,

TTDI, Kuala Lumpur.

Tel: 011-6990 5800

Tucked away above the cheer-filled, Mexican-themed Loco TTDI, is sister outlet Escobar. This lush, comfortable neighbourhood lounge draws its inspiration from hit Netflix drama Narcos and aims to hit all the right spots from drink selections to its ambience and vibe.

With the tagline “sick tunes, chilled drinks and beautiful people”, the bar makes its own effort to stand out from the crowd and offer another option for a night on the town.

On Wednesday nights, ladies will get to sample some of Escobar’s drinks for free until 9pm and also enjoy the sounds of the resident two-piece The Genesis Band who throw down a host of party tunes and familiar favourites.

Friday nights are also a hot time to chill at Escobar, with a great line-up of guest DJs, including some legends of the local scene such as DJ Skeletor, spinning the vinyl wheels and getting the crowd to loosen up.

With Loco TTDI just downstairs, there is definitely some great food to be had here as well.

9FiveQ Restobar34, Jln USJ9/5Q

Subang Jaya

Tel: 010-277 2909

Priding itself on good food, great drinks and amazing live music, this gem tucked away in Subang Jaya serves up the live jams every night.

Monday: The duo of Charles & Amelia take on the task of entertaining the crowd with a selection of groovy tunes.

Tuesday: Crooner Gerard Singh takes it solo as he brings his charm and talents to the stage.

Wednesday: Soon King and Erwin are in the house to entertain as the duo get ready for some serious musical action.

Thursday: Veteran axeman Colin Jansen gets his groove on as he turns up the night with a dose of great tunes.

Friday: It’s a buskers’ night out at 9FiveQ, with the Anthem Trio taking centre stage for some more acoustic vibes.

The Bertie & BellaE-35-01, 3-Two Square,

2, Jalan 19/1,

Petaling Jaya

Tel: 03-7665 9368

With a name like The Bertie & Bella, footie fans would definitely know which team is supported here. But it’s more than just a football fan hangout, with a great selection of live music on offer and a decently extensive menu and, of course, a great selection of cold drinks.

Wednesday: The Bandalorians duo of Kishmore and Reuben are up for the job of killing it on stage.

Friday: Veteran musicians Mary Jackson and Raymond Chia get up to the groove as they hit all the right notes.

Saturday: Just one of them on stage is a treat, so get ready for a little magic when Gerard Singh teams up with Colin Jackson to get the party going.

Backyard Pub & Grill28, Jalan Sri Hartamas 8,

Kuala Lumpur

Tel: 011-6135 5473

Almost an institution in its own right, Backyard has been serving up good times, great food and amazing vibes for over 30 years.

While the grub is great and the drinks refreshing, there is also plenty of music on offer here in the heart of Sri Hartamas.

Thursday: Talented guitarist Mark Renesh teams up with songstress Brenda Lee to let the good times roll.

Saints BarFirst Floor, 11-1,

Jalan Sri Hartamas 7,

Kuala Lumpur

Tel: 017-979 7148

When it comes to themed bars, there’s plenty around but Saints does things a little different by choosing to pay homage to a group of educators.

As stated on its website, the Saints Bar pays homage to the Lasallian community in Malaysia. Brothers, teachers, students – past, present, future and the forgotten.

The outlet also celebrates the contributions of the La Salle Brothers to education in Malaysia and there is a nifty series of paintings on the wall of various La Salle institutions in Malaysia, including St John’s Institution in Kuala Lumpur.

Wednesday: Riza and Acha take on the Live Sessions in Saints for some music to brighten the midweek blues.

Friday: Arab and Badar are two musicians who need no introduction to regulars on the scene as they have been perfecting their art over the years. Hitting the stage on Friday nights, the duo are ready to get into the thick of the action.


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