If you're planning an exciting evening out, don't look further than Kiyamachi street. Here you find restaurants, bars, and live venues tightly packed in a small side street between Nijo and Shijo streets - and one of the live venues is the exciting Live Spot Rag.
The Live Spot Rag opened its doors back in 1981 and has since become a beloved institution for all live music fans in Kyoto. Located at the 5th floor of the Empire Building just south of Oike Dori, it is a cosy venue for a wide variety of live concerts, from Japanese and International top artists of all musical styles to budding as-yet amateurs from Kyoto.
Come at 18:00 when the doors open and have dinner before the performance. After the concert, the bar is open until midnight and you may be lucky to have a private chat with the star of the evening.
Passport Discount: Foreign tourists get 500 ¥ off the ticket price when showing their passport at the entrance.
Membership: If you stay longer in Kyoto, you should become a Rag Member. It gives you special perks like discounts and early pre-order tickets, priority seating at selected concerts, the chance to win free tickets... Check this page to become a Rag Member for one year.
Sat. 8, 19:00 Sarah Maeda x Jyunki Kaseda
FUSION This evening, sax player Sarah Maeda who explores her own music based in gospel holds a two-man project with Jyunki Kaseda, talented guitarist from the popular instrumental funk band "Natural Killers". Special guest: KenT and his saxophone.
Sat. 14, 19:30 Machiko Watarumi Samba musica bratileira
BRAZILIAN Have a relaxing Saturday night with the acoustic duo consisting of Michiko Watarumi, a samba bossa-nova singer highly praised even by top Brazilian players, and Yutaka Yamada, virtuoso of the seven-string guitar.
Fri. 21, 20:00 Luciano Ghosn
El Flamenco de la Nueva Ola Flamenco guitarist Luciano Ghosn from Spain has been attracting attention as a young guitar virtuoso. With a flexible musicality nurtured through collaborations with jazz and another genre music players, he will deliver a music world of his own in this performance together with Chinese Erhu.
Fri. 21, 23:30 Midnight Jazz Live
Live Spot Rag Signature Event: Twice a month on Fridays, the Live Spot Rag opens their stage after the live music hours for local Jazz musicians. This free concert that often turns into a jam session is a great start into the weekend for the night owls of Kyoto. On these days, the Live Spot Rag closes at 2:00.
Thu. 27, 19:30 Tommy's Live
JAZZ Tommy is an extraordinarily gifted and powerful trombone player.This night, Tommy and special guests from Kansai are playing cheerful and beautiful music. On stage are: Tommy (trombone), Tsutomu Takei (ts), Toru Nakajima (piano), Tetsurou Aratama (bass) and Daishirou Kajiwara (ds).
For more great concerts happening at the Live Spot Rag almost every day, check out the schedule on the homepage of the Live Spot Rag!
Address: 5th floor The Empire Building, Kiyamachi Dori Sanjo Agaru, Nakagyo Ward, Kyoto 604-8001 (Google Maps)
Directions: Take Kyoto City Bus 3, 4, 5, 10, 11, 17, 32, 59, 86, 104, 205 to Kawaramachi Sanjo.
Opening hours: Almost daily until 24:00; on "Midnight Jazz" Fridays until 2:00. Opening depends on event.
Seats: 100 persons (with tables), max. 150 persons (seats only)
Reservations: Recommended. Tickets can be pre-purchased on the respective event pages.
Food & Drinks: Required order of 2 drink/food items during live performance hours; after event open bar until 24:00. See the menu here (in Japanese), English menu available.
Photography: Depending on event.
Smoking: Depending on event. From April 1, 2020: No.
Wheelchair accessible: Yes; elevator to the 5th floor.
Parking: No; paid bicycle parking nearby on Oike Dori. Please consider public transport options.
All photos courtesy of the Live Spot Rag Kyoto.
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