Weekly wrap – commencing Thursday 23 July 2020


It’s Thursday again already – take your choice tonight from Ege Bar’s open mic, Moon Knight Pub’s open mic competition, The Sundance Kings at Sundance Inn and Saloon, and/or The Extraordinary Chambers at Oscar’s on the Corner, where there’s a new happy hour (75 cent draught beer, 8 pm – 10 pm, every night).

Wayfaring son Joshua Chiang is back in Phnom Penh after an enforced long stay in his hometown Singapore, and he’s back at Cloud on Friday out in the garden.  Anthony & Femke are over at Alchemy, Band@Work do pop at Hard Rock Café, Kairon & Lis from the Havana Kings make it Latin at Duplex and Arome Khmer are at Ege Bar.  If you want it louder and faster, Oscar’s on the Corner hosts a punk night (note early start time 8.30 pm) featuring new band Blood Bricks (Ned, Tin, Robin and Boom Baar), old favourites Stiff Little Punks and perennial The Schkoots, followed late by house band K’n’E.   In case you missed it, Bandcamp Daily this week presents brief but informative article on the hardcore scene in Phnom Penh.  As a reminder, apart from the artists in the article also available at Bandcamp are The Schkoots, Dub Addiction, Geography of the Moon, Ernie Buck and others that Leng Pleng can’t call to mind just now.

The Jazz and the City series continues on Friday but it’s already booked out – get in early for next week’s instalment, Just Take Five, featuring Euan, Andrey and Funky.  And keep an eye out for special Wednesday shows that Intan & Metta are also sneaking in at Green Pepper – not to forget Bouchon’s Wednesdays that this week feature Blues Routes Trio, and Sharky Bar’s Wednesdays that this week feature Mary & Takeshi.

On Saturday night it’s acoustic with Kirsty & Dave at The Box Office and Boxchords at Alchemy, and Latin with Son Cubano at Botanico and Aguita de Coco at Sharky BarPocket Change are at Ege Bar, Hard Rock Café host much travelled Russian rock accordion girl Elena Stenkina, and the Cambodia Country Band do a special Saturday night show at Oscar’s on the Corner (note early start time 9 pm) followed by K’n’E.

On Sunday evening the regular Sharky Bar open mic jam has been suspended for the moment due to noise concerns – Blues Routes will perform instead.  Sunday Sundowner Sessions at Tacos Kokopelli continues as usual from 5 pm.

Down in Kampot this weekend, Samurai Saloon host an open mic on Saturday night, and Intan & Anthony will play a Sunday evening show at Monkey Republic.

Posted by Hard Rock Cafe Phnom Penh on Monday, 20 July 2020

Passing Chords:  a few things you might not know about…


Arone Silverman.  Guitar and trumpet player who you might have seen on stage with Pocket Change, South East Asia Soul Revue, Straight no Chaser, Vartey Ganiva, Havana Kings, Intan & Metta, Joe & the Jumping Jacks, Fawlty Powers, the 99 Boyz, or the Joy Boys for the Wednesday jam formerly at LF Social Club, now relocated to new venue Boran House.

Your pet musical hate:
I don’t like sharps over flats.  If someone says C sharp I think D flat.  Especially double sharps, they really annoy me.  I play a note on a keyboard, a black key, you’re going to say either sharp or flat, and everybody would be different.  I think in flats, they’re just friendlier to me, softer.

A private musical indulgence:
I’m really into Blue Note jazz, and I also get really into traditional things like Nepalese music, raga, maybe because it’s so different, and it has a different set of rules.  It’s different from everything I play and everything I learned.

The year you first came to Cambodia:
I just had my five year anniversary, so July 2015.

An early music memory:
When I was five years old my father used to wake me up on the weekends by playing Time by Pink Floyd – he would just blast that track.  Get out of bed!

Your favourite food:
Tacos.  I spent a lot of time in LA, I really like tacos, the perfect meal.  And you get to choose how many you want.

What you do on a night off:
Sometimes I go to shows.  I like to go to shows after gigs, because a lot of my gigs end early.  On a night off I chill out, because gigging is tiring and rehearsing is tiring, so I just watch a movie.

The country you want to visit:
I’d like to go to Japan.  It seems like a really fun, cool country.  A lot of culture, a lot of music.  Probably all my gear comes from Japan, so I’m sure they’ve got lots of really good gear there.

A book you’ve never read/movie you’ve never seen:
Right now I’m actually reading John Bolton’s book, The Room Where It Happened.  I would like to finish that because I’m trying to understand everything, from all aspects.  I just don’t know if I have it in me to finish it.

Your primary instrument, and when you started playing it:
I’m most proficient at guitar.  Piano was my first instrument, I enjoy it and I wish I was more diligent about it when I was a young child – I’m repeat learning it.  Scholastically I played most with the trumpet – trumpet allowed me to understand music theory, scales, harmony.  But the guitar freed me to write music, more of a harmonic instrument, and afforded much more opportunity.  My first guitar my grandmother bought me when I was 12 years old, and I hated it, I couldn’t play it.  I was getting really good at the trumpet at the time.  I didn’t really pick up the guitar again until I was about 16 in high school, grunge rock, Metallica, Led Zeppelin, rock’n’roll.  In the last two years I’ve delved back into the trumpet.

Something people might be surprised to know about you:
I grew up in the countryside, in Vermont, in a place where there are more cows than people.  My school had a good scholastic music programme, but in general there was not much music.  I’m not into Americana and bluegrass.  Another thing people don’t know about me is I’ve done a lot of travelling, I lived in Nicaragua for a year as a volunteer doing community agriculture development.  I studied international development and might have become a diplomat – but life takes you different places.  I’m very happy I’m not a diplomat right now.

A question from last week’s participant: what’s your next project?
I work on a lot of projects, and most of them involve a lot of the same people, because Phnom Penh is not huge.  I play with Jesse Ricketson and Damani Kelly a lot, they’re both producers, I’m a hack producer, we all have original material, so we’re going more into production.  We just finished the Corona video, so we’d like to do more of that.  So the next project will be for us to develop as a trio, developing content, and we hope to collaborate with people to help them with stuff that we want to write and they can be a part of, as well as what other people want to write, and get more music out there.  Also I am hoping to be part of the Vidas, a new female vocal trio.

Steve Porte Photo of the Week

Brin Wood of The Conspiracy Theory joins the stage with Greg Beshers of The Extraordinary Chambers at Oscar’s on the Corner.

Let us know about any musical activities we haven’t captured:  gigs@lengpleng.com.

Stay safe out there, and see you around the traps.

your correspondent,

Guillermo Wheremount









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