Regular live music nights in Hong Kong
Wouldn’t be much of a list without The Wanch. This Hong Kong institution has been the city’s live music community centre since 1987. There’s a performer/band on every night and it’s always free. Any night’s a good night to get down to The Wanch, but for a jumping off point if you’ve never been, go to their Acoustic Happy Hour. Delivering delightful covers and crowd-pleasers (and maybe the odd tune you’ve never heard of), as well as the odd original played by whoever really feels like getting up on stage and belting one out - it’s ground zero for Hong Kong's live music.
One of Hong Kong’s oldest and best-loved bars, with a house band that has attained legendary status, plying their trade every night. You’d think the same band doing roughly the same thing every night would get stale, right? Not so, these boys are proper, old-school showmen, changing the makeup of the performance every night, adding fun little skits (using a tea pot as an instrument with amazing success comes to mind), and interacting with the audience. If you have any interest in live music and you’re new in town, Ned Kelly’s is an initiation.
From the minds behind BackStage Live, which sadly closed last year, 1563 at the East is an ambitious, 6,000 square foot space purpose-built for live music. As such, they’re no mugs when it comes to putting a gig on. You’re in for a treat most nights but our pick of the weekly bunch is their Wild Wild West night every Wednesday, a kaleidoscopic, river-boat journey of live music that takes in folk, rock, jazz, funk, R&B, soul, latin and reggae (and everything inbetween). Very cool.
One of the city’s best kept musical secrets. Considering that Visage One is actually a hair salon, the music is literally secretive. But, every Saturday, owner and live music fanatic Benky Chan opens the doors to this tiny, intimate hair dresser and turns it into a pseudo jazz bar with some of the city’s best musicians playing nose-to-nose with the small group of plucky music lovers that manage to get in. When we say it’s a secret, it’s not really. There’s usually a cue down the street, so if you want to see what all the fuss is about. Get there early. Maybe a get a trim while you’re waiting.