Kroon For Your Kai – Every Wednesday at The Southern Cross Garden Bar Restaurant

Mara and Melody.
Mara and Melody

Ah, The Southern Cross Garden Bar Restaurant! How I love thee. Let’s be honest, where else in town is going to hand you a water bottle and a blanket on a cold winters night? Where else has a complimentary sausage sizzle going at night time? And where else is really providing as many opportunities for people to see live music for free several times a week?

What I really love about The Southern Cross Garden Bar Restaurant is the opportunities it gives to young, emerging musicians, because NEWSFLASH PEOPLE!!! when you’re starting out as a solo act or band in Wellington, finding a place that will let you play is considerably harder than it might sound.

One of the best ways The Southern Cross Garden Bar Restaurant helps give emerging musicians a shot is through their weekly Kroon For Your Kai showcase, held every Wednesday night between 7-1o pm. Currently hosted by Melody Thomas, the showcase was originally started by Mara Simpson of Mara and The Buskhas, who is currently winging her way around Europe. Melody on the other hand, you may know from her work as a journalist with both Capital Times and Radio New Zealand (for whom she now works as a producer on the Music 101 show).

In recent times the night has seen performances from the likes of Estere, Jean Pompey, Nikita of Nikita And The Spooky and Adam Page, as well as plenty of talented unknowns. And sometimes you’ll even catch Melody on stage singing. Along this line of thought, it was actually the first place I saw Wellington’s current young soul darling Louis Baker play live.

As the name of the event suggests, the performers are paid in food and drink, and between a mixture of more established musicians wanting to try something new out, and younger musicians getting their first taste of an audience, it’s pretty much always a good time. As Melody puts it, “…the stage isn’t raised above floor level, making it all feel a lot less intimidating – that makes it a great place to start.”

If you want to get in on the ground floor with some fresh local talent and catch some more established acts in a more relaxed mode, do drop past.

Postscript: Musicians! If you’re interested in playing at Kroon For Your Kai, do drop Melody an email at music@thecross.co.nz. Please include some recorded examples of your music as well if possible.

Martyn.

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