Best live music venues in Singapore
Whether you’re singin’ the blues or cruising for some bruising rock ’n’ roll, check out these music bars in town for a dose of live music
Guns N' Roses – Not in This Lifetime Tour
This is not an illusion – Guns N' Roses are heading to Singapore for the first time ever. And the Lion City is the band's only pit stop in South-East Asia. Come February 25, Changi Exhibition Centre will welcome the hard rock band to this urban jungle as part of their Not in This Lifetime Tour, which is pretty much a reunion between the founding members: Axl Rose is once again teaming up with Slash and Duff McKagan. (No Izzy, unfortunately.) The trio is joined by keyboardist Dizzy Reed, who has been a part of GnR since 1990. Priority tickets for OCBC cardmembers go on sale on Oct 14, 10am. Tickets for the general public go on sale on Oct 17, 10am. Until then, work up an appetite for destruction.
With the release of Linying’s debut EP, we clue you in on the fresh face behind the wistful tunes and poignant words
Watch now: Gentle Bones releases music video for ‘Shifting Over’
After teasing on his Instagram page a couple of months back with this image, Joel Tan (aka Gentle Bones) has finally dropped the bomb: it’s a new promotional single off the singer-songwriter's sophomore effort, Geniuses and Thieves. In ‘Shifting Over’, which premiered on Billboard Asia on Sunday, Tan delivers a melancholic, synth-driven track that mashes bits of R&B over his lush vocals. The song eventually builds up to an irresistible electro-pop bridge in which he laments: ‘I’ve got enough I want nothing to do with you, dear / Seized half my heart now it’s hardly impartial unsure.’ Directed by Jasper Tan of Vadbibes – who also worked on Gentle Bone’s music video for the titular track ‘Geniuses and Thieves’ – the 3-minute-long clip carries the same deep hues and saturated lighting as the former, following the singer as he saunters down dark alleyways and drive by the countryside. But that aside, the 22-year-old's showing off some acting chops of his own in the scenes of his anguished self getting into brawls. Watch the music video above and tell us what you think. Gentles Bones is performing at Neon Lights on Nov 26.
Upcoming concerts in Singapore
Be prepared to empty your pockets because you're gonna want to book tickets to these concerts happening this year
Live music events
Power Records by Kult
If you’re rueing a bygone era of music where you could dig through rows and rows of vinyls, drop by Kult’s Power Records. Kult Gallery will be...
Club nights and DJ gigs
SōKO is a collective of DJs that share a passion for hip hip, house, bass and garage music. This time, Ben Campbell, DJ Passion and Dan Stoneman flies...
Caribbean Cruising Party
All aboard the, uh, streets of Jiak Chuan Road: LOPELAB’s cranking things up with a Caribbean-style party, starting with reggae, salsa, afrobeats and...
Sky CarnEVIL: The Penthouse of Peril
Killer clowns abound at Empire club this Halloween. Be welcomed by the sinister smiles of Joker, Twisty and other clown characters as they put a nightmarish...
Battle Royale: Halloween 2016
The Halloween shenanigans at The White Rabbit have moved out of Dempsey into OverEasy Orchard. The all-American diner turns into the ultimate fight club,...
Kyo’s resident DJ will play a whopping six-hour set as part of the club's Halloween programme. Crowned 'Best New DJ' in 2008, EJ Missy has come a long...
Best live music venues
Montreux Jazz Café
Deep in the heart of Orchard, a speakeasy-harking den devoted to jazz and blues has risen. Its name will be familiar to fans of the genre: Montreux Jazz Café. Yes, of the jazz festival fame. The intimate space in Pan Pacific Orchard, racked with memorabilia and vintage posters, is only the sixth of its kind in the world, and the first in the region. But on to the music. The Café plays host to a roster of local and international cats, as well as the odd DJ or two, in gigs that go on until the bar closes, ’round about midnight. Expect blues, fusion, smooth jazz and a healthy dose of standards – already, the likes of local jazz legend Jeremy Monteiro and British soul sensation Omar have taken the venue’s stage. Don’t let its name fool you, though. This is not a café so much as a restaurant and bar. An exhaustive list of cocktails ($16-$26) ranges from your classic Manhattans to the signature The Girl from Ipanema that, true to its bossa nova-inspired name, mixes Cachaca 51 with lemon juice, orange juice and passion fruit. The food, on the other hand, takes cues from hearty European fare: think Croque Madames ($18) and pan-roasted sea bass fillets ($22).
You know a place is serious about its music when its tiny stage is dominated by a grand piano. Yeah, a legit Yamaha C2 is the backbone upon which this red-slathered bar in Boat Quay is founded – and it has even roped in Bon Goût Music, founded by the fearless jazz pianist Aya Sekine, to run the music programme. There isn’t a house band here, so you’ll have to keep tabs on Club L’Opera’s Facebook page to find out when its twice-monthly gigs (from 7.30 to 10.30pm) are held. Given Sekine’s eclectic style – she used to play at Blu Jaz Cafe alongside DJs, beatboxers and other jazz musicians – the music at Club L’Opera ranges from bebop and swing to free improv and vocal jazz. The gigs are all ticketed ($15-$30), and you’ll also need to order at least one drink.
The Singapore Jazz Club
The name says it all, really. This high-ceilinged joint, draped in red curtains, is all about old-school jazz, R&B and Motown. Resident pianist Mario Serio hits the keys every Thursday, hosting the venue’s VOX series of shows: a pairing of pianist and vocalist. Also pop by every Sunday, when these cats take the stage for a no-holds-barred jam session. There’s no cover charge for the latter, but tickets for the other gigs range from $15 to $20.
Switch by Timbre
Mandopop/rock doesn’t get its due credit among the Pitchfork faithful here, but there’s no denying the genre is the most commercially successful Singaporean music. Enter this bar and restaurant by the Timbre group that sets its sights on fledgling musos who can rock their Beyond and Wu Bai. Three resident bands and musicians – The Switch Gang, Tay Kexin and Too Much Drama – rotate every day of the week, sans Sunday, with tunes ranging from Jay Chou tearjerkers to harder numbers. Tuesdays are gentler acoustic nights, so if you’re in the mood for love, head over to Switch then.
Barber Shop by Timbre
The baby of the Timbre family swung open in 2014 with one mission in mind: to put live music front and centre. True to the group’s calling card, it’s mostly blues, classic rock, funk and other barn-storming genres that ring out at this den in The Arts House. Wednesdays see house band Raw Earth stamp the stage with their blood-and-guts blues, Thursday’s an open mic session (from 8 to 11.30pm), Friday is reserved for the Barber Shop Quartet’s swing and roots rock, and Saturday is a double-bill: a special artist showcase from 7pm, followed by a classic rock jam by Good Question.
Best bars in Singapore
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