I get off at King’s Cross station and start walking to the bar. There’s no sign out front, only an address next to the gate. I ring the doorbell, and the doorman comes to the gate. “Can I help you?” he says.
“Is this T****?” I ask. (they like their anonymity, they don’t even have their address on their website).
“Who invited you?” he responds.
Once I said the right name, I was welcomed in. Normally I would shy away from a place with a door policy like that, but I knew the band would be awesome.
A couple days earlier when I was walking around Coogee, I happened by an open-air tapas cafe with a small latin band playing. Real simple: keys, acoustic bass, bongos, and another drummer playing with brushes on the tables. And these guys were sick, even in that small setup.
After they stopped playing, I talked with the drummer to see if they were playing over the weekend, and he gave me the info about the club. Luckily he warned me about the door and he gave me his card.
The band played salsa for a while, and then various musicians began coming onstage (stage is an exageration, it was really just a small room, the band and maybe 75 people crammed into the music room) moving from salsa to funk to dancehall to rock. It was some of the wickedest shit I’ve seen. I think it’s safe to say that most of Sydney’s best musicians were there last night.
Then Justin Timberlake’s band showed up and jammed for a while. This is apparantly the place where the big bands come to hang out after they perform in Sydney. Beyonce’s band was there a couple months ago, and then John Mayer’s band. From JT’s band, it was the bass player, the guitarist, and the drummer. I found out later that the drummer used to tour with Prince for a while. Sick, sick drummer. These guys were unbelievable. Different people kept coming up and sitting in jamming until 3 in the morning.
Then it was finally time to head back to the hostel to pass out to wake up at 8am to walk up the Sydney Harbor Bridge. Fortunately, they warn you when you buy your ticket that they breathalize you can go up. So I made sure to pace myself throughout the night. But there was plenty of awesome music that the booze wasn’t quite so necessary.
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Potts Point, New South Wales, Australia