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The Leng Pleng Gig Guide comes out on a Thursday or Friday of every week

Weekly Gig Guide - Commencing Thursday 14th November 2013

Happy Bon Om Toeuk!

The Kingdom of Wonder is a world-leader in national holidays, and this weekend we celebrate the annual Water Festival. For most of us that means a couple more days off to enjoy ourselves and the gig guide is obligingly stuffed with fantastic shows.

For those pouring out of Phnom Penh and into the provinces, there are some great options over the weekend. MC Gobshite brings his abrasive style to The Naga House in Kampot on Saturday. He is teaming up with DJ Kdam for a night of rhymes and beats and as his name might suggest, UK rapper Gobshite is not shy in projecting his lyrics nor scared to offend. This should be a fun, funky and heavy night. The underground dance music continues with wild abandon on Sunday at the Full Moon Party on Koh Rong Samloen Island - a short ‘party boat’ ride away from Serendipity Beach, Sihanoukville.

Thoughts of dance music, tropical islands and wild abandon are starting to give me flashbacks from my younger days. I’ll save those stories for another time. Personally, I’ll be sticking around the city this weekend and making the increasingly busy dash around the venues on Friday and Saturday night. I only hope that my little 50cc moto will keep up with the pace.

Equinox hosts an esteemed guest on Friday - the guitar-magician from Asbury Park, New Jersey - Keith Kenny. Keith’s style could be described as folk-blues, but this is not the everyday sing’n’strum show one might expect at a solo songwriter gig. With the help of a few stomp boxes, Keith artfully employs his guitar as a percussion instrument as well as a melodic instrument. The resulting ‘wall of sound’ effect is sometimes nothing more than a novelty when used by lesser players, but Keith’s authentic blues guitar prowess gives his show some real depth. As a bonus, he is supported at Equinox by the sweet and sparkling voice of Khmer singer Miss Sarawan.

This week’s gig guide provides a good chance to highlight one really great thing about the expat music scene in Phnom Penh – the open mic and acoustic nights. Over the next few days there are a number of great shows coming up from expat artists who have gradually refined their craft, week in, week out, at the quieter weekday music nights. Phnom Penh audiences have a uniquely laid back and forgiving attitude towards performers. Venues like Paddy Rice, Sundance and Showbox are very encouraging towards inexperienced but enthusiastic musicians wishing to improve. Also, the network of expat musicians in Phnom Penh is fairly small and fairly welcoming. A musician can arrive in Phnom Penh as a nervous newbie and leave a few months later feeling like a confident pro.

While the Paddy Rice open mic keeps going strong on Thursdays under the stewardship of Jet Odrerir (and Jack hears a rumour that Phnom Penh prodigal son Ziad Samman will be making an appearance this week), we unfortunately have to bid farewell to another progenitor of polished performers, Scott Bywater. His weekly Bywater at Baitong ends it's run tonight. There will probably be red wine involved, and performances from a few of the folks that have benefited from stage time and face time with Scoddy. Jack hears that the man is moving to France, and is promised a Leng Pleng feature interview before he leaves.

Musical comedian Roddy Fraser is a familiar face during open mic sessions at Baitong, Le Jardin, Sundance Inn and The Alley Cat Cafe. In fact, Roddy has immersed himself in the Phnom Penh scene with absolute dedication. He has been roving around venues carrying an old beat-up guitar and grabbing any opportunity to hone his craft. Roddy gave a smash performance at Sharky Bar’s Battle of the Buskers and he will make a triumphant return to the venue this Friday for An Audience with Roddy Fraser.

Friday sees a couple of other headline performances by open mic stalwarts. Ringtail bring their hippy aesthetic and songbook of seventies classics to Friday night at The Village. Meanwhile, Joshua Chiang completes his transformation into charismatic frontman with a solo show at Cabaret - succeeding with some vocally-challenging pop covers that few others would dare to choose.

Lovers of French pop songs are directed to The Village on Saturday, where Esther Mwauka will be performing her first full gig with a backing band as MWAUKA & The Gang. Esther has been around the Phnom Penh scene for years but she seems to have kicked her act up a few gears recently. Jack is always happy to hear some excellent soul and gospel vocals, and there is always a shortage of singers doing Francis Cabrel covers.

An open mic of an alternative description is taking place at Slur Bar on Saturday night with the Rom Bak Battle. This hip-hop night offers the chance to compete at break dancing and body popping for cash prizes. Although I have been an active B-boy for over twenty years, after long deliberation I have decided not to compete. This was to ensure that the youngsters have a chance of winning.

I’ll leave you with something new from Dengue Fever, a behind-the-scenes video accompanying their forthcoming EP Girl From the North. It seems like everything this band produces is absolutely awesome, and their latest stuff is no exception. Also a link to a great video showing Keith Kenny’s unique style.

Salutations, and a plea from my landlady Mrs Sovann: ‘Drive safe bong, and please not make noise when you come home at night’


Latest Gigs

Thursday  14-Nov-2013
  • 7:00 PM ~ The Bossa Nova Lovers at Cabaret Restaurant
  • 7:30 PM ~ Bye Bye Bywater at Baitong at The Baitong Restaurant & Bar
  • 8:00 PM ~ Khem , Sok Seylalin , Sok Sreyleak , Sarat Thhat , Sea Woft , DJ Chin Chan and DJ Rith at Lavo Restaurant & Lounge
  • 8:00 PM ~ Unity at The Village
  • 8:00 PM ~ DJ Maurice at Backstage Cocktail Bar
  • 8:30 PM ~ Open Mic Night at Paddy Rice
  • 9:00 PM ~ Rhiannon Johnson Trio at The Groove
  • 9:00 PM ~ DJ F.U.D at Meta House
Friday  15-Nov-2013
  • 7:00 PM ~ Joshua Chiang , Rory Kennihan and Kandhi Letchu at Cabaret Restaurant
  • 8:00 PM ~ Khem , Sok Seylalin , Sok Sreyleak , Sarat Thhat , Sea Woft , DJ Chin Chan and DJ Rith at Lavo Restaurant & Lounge
  • 8:00 PM ~ Anniversary Masquerade Ball at The Show Box
  • 8:30 PM ~ Vibratone and Batuque 40 Degrees at The Slur Bar
  • 9:00 PM ~ DJ Underground at The Sundance Inn & Saloon
  • 9:00 PM ~ DJ Flo Trallala , DJ Wez-T and DJ Chris Quixote at Meta House
  • 9:00 PM ~ Joe Wrigley , Mealea Lay and Keith Kenny * at Equinox
  • 9:00 PM ~ DJ Cleo-P * at The RiverHouse Lounge
  • 9:00 PM ~ DJ Zara Gift * at Nova Penthouse
  • 9:00 PM ~ Ringtail at The Village
  • 9:00 PM ~ 5 Covers at Paddy Rice
  • 9:30 PM ~ An Audience with Roddy Fraser at Sharky Bar
  • 10:00 PM ~ DJ Gang and DJ Rob at Pontoon
  • 10:00 PM ~ Alan Ritchie and DJ Shaman at The Pontoon Bistro
Saturday  16-Nov-2013
  • 8:00 PM ~ Khem , Sok Seylalin , Sok Sreyleak , Sarat Thhat , Sea Woft , DJ Chin Chan and DJ Rith at Lavo Restaurant & Lounge
  • 9:00 PM ~ My House is your House at The Laundry Music Bar in Siem Reap
  • 9:00 PM ~ Dub Addiction at Equinox
  • 9:00 PM ~ DJ Dan Beck The , Kimchi Collective , DJ Simon C Vent and Steve Goddard at Otres Beach in Sihanouk Ville
  • 9:00 PM ~ MWAUKA & The Gang at The Village
  • 9:00 PM ~ Rom Bak Battle at The Slur Bar
  • 9:00 PM ~ DJ K'Dam and MC Gobshite at The Naga House in Kampot
  • 9:00 PM ~ DJ DTonn at The Silk Garden in Siem Reap
  • 9:00 PM ~ DJ Star and DJ Maily at The RiverHouse Lounge
  • 10:00 PM ~ DJ Blue and DJ Gang at Pontoon
Sunday  17-Nov-2013
  • 4:00 PM ~ The Kimchi Collective at Arcadia Backpackers Kampot in Kampot
  • 4:00 PM ~ Ringtail at The 3Mangos Guesthouse
  • 6:00 PM ~ Tamaraka Trio at The Village
  • 8:00 PM ~ Khem , Sok Seylalin , Sok Sreyleak , Sarat Thhat , Sea Woft , DJ Chin Chan and DJ Rith at Lavo Restaurant & Lounge
  • 9:00 PM ~ DJ Flo Trallala , DJ Wez-T , DJ Funkelastiks , DJ Lefty and DJ Lion at Koh Rong Samloem in Sihanouk Ville
  • 9:00 PM ~ DJ Kakada and DJ Susu Dam at The RiverHouse Lounge
Monday  18-Nov-2013
  • 8:00 PM ~ Sweet Caipirinha at The Village
  • 8:00 PM ~ Khem , Sok Seylalin , Sok Sreyleak , Sarat Thhat , Sea Woft , DJ Chin Chan and DJ Rith at Lavo Restaurant & Lounge
  • 8:30 PM ~ Nostalgie at The Slur Bar
  • 9:00 PM ~ DJ Tam and DJ Panara at The RiverHouse Lounge
Tuesday  19-Nov-2013
  • 8:00 PM ~ Joey Paz at The Village
Wednesday  20-Nov-2013
  • 9:30 PM ~ The Riverside Ray-Bans at The Slur Bar
Coming Up
  • The Grass Snake Union at Equinox
  • Kasey Taylor at Pontoon
  • Kok Thlok at The Show Box
  • Gabi Faja and AI Iawasaki at The Doors
  • GTS Sextet at The Doors
  • The Klezbodians at The Doors
  • Vibratone at The Doors
  • The Underdogs at Equinox
  • Sangvar Day and The Adobo Conspiracy at Equinox
  • Jaworski 7 at Equinox
  • Frisco Tony, The Beatniks, Dr. Wah Wah, DJ Nights and DJ Nicomatic at Meta House
  • Laura Mam at The Village
  • The Cambodian Space Project at Equinox
  • Latino Party at Kukuluku Beach Club in Kep
  • The Fumes at Equinox
  • RNA + Friends at The Village, Paddy Rice
  • DJ Gang and MWAUKA at Paddy Rice
  • Hydrophonics and DJ Tech 12 at Pontoon
  • DJ Phatt Controller, DJ Cab, DJ Polaak and Salmon All Star at The 3Mangos Guesthouse
  • DJ JO at Meta House
  • DJ Tonle Dub, DJ Mercy and DJ Chris Quixote at Meta House
  • DJ Flo Trallala, DJ Wez-T and DJ B-Fox at Meta House
  • Dina Chhan and Invisible Agent at Meta House
  • DJ Phatt Controller, DJ Polaak and Salmon All Star at The Show Box
  • Antonio Pineda, James Speck, Tim King and DJ Nicomatic at Meta House

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