Friday, June 26, 2015

Hometown Hunt: The Jazz Cellar

Friday, June 26, 2015
As much as I love to travel, and daydream about ticking off all those many countries on my 'to visit list', I also love my city. I live in Perth, Western Australia. Compared to other states such as New South Wales and Victoria, Western Australia isn't as 'well known'; especially once you consider that Perth is one of the most isolated cities in the world. Over the years, Perth had a bit of a stigma for being 'boring', especially among the youth. I have always maintained the belief that Perth is interesting, you just have to know where to look, and once you're in the know, you'll be amazed by what is waiting to be discovered. This is now even more the case, as Perth is really coming into its own with so many cool restaurants, bars and arts projects popping up. When I talk to my parents about Perth back in the day, they are amazed by how much it has changed. There really is so much to do and so much to discover. I find myself falling more and more in love with my city each day.

I was recently made aware of a project by Eventbrite, an online platform that helps people discover events taking place in their city and also allows people to manage their own events through the website and sell tickets. The project in question is called the Hometown Hunt Campaign in which bloggers share their favourite places in their respective cities. I was eager to take part, so set out to discover a place that is indicative of Perth's colourful and exciting lifestyle and arts scene.

The Jazz Cellar
The Jazz Cellar has to be one of Perth's best kept secrets, and is possibly one of Perth's most exciting live music venues, open Friday nights only. A small underground venue that hosts up to 100 people, the Jazz Cellar was created by Corner House Jazz Band, a group that has been playing jazz for over 19 years. While it is not a licensed food or drinks venue, you're free to bring your own. My companion and I decided to order pizzas from a local joint (which also delivers to the cellar), but I also found myself eyeing off a few of the platters some people had brought along; I'll be sure to bring my own picnic next time! 

A big part of The Jazz Cellar's allure and mystique is the fact that it doesn't advertise itself a great deal and relies primarily on word of mouth. In addition to minimal signage, The Jazz Cellar is a little hard to find as it's located in an alley behind a Salvos and, get this, the entrance is via an old phone booth. I'm a sucker for novelties like this, so to me, it promised a night of thrills. We got there a little early (6pm), and the performance didn't start until 7:30pm. However, The Jazz Cellar is a lovely intimate place ideal for socializing with friends and mingling with strangers. 

Of course, the music was the highlight of the night. Throughout the evening, the band played a repertoire of traditional live vintage jazz that was upbeat and fun, making it almost impossible not to want to dance or to tap one's foot along. Even if you don't feel like dancing, it's just as fun to sit back and enjoy the music and watch the players have a ball of a time; they have such character! I also really enjoyed watching resident dancer Robin dance with different partners throughout the night. He was certainly a hit with the ladies.

All in all, I had one of the most enjoyable evenings ever at The Jazz Cellar. You're assured all kinds of entertainment in the friendly and jovial joint. I was a little sad to climb back up the stairs, exit the phone booth and leave behind a world reminiscent of 1920s New Orleans at the end of the night, but this just means that I am determined to re-visit this hidden gem again.

The Jazz Cellar:
Scarborough Beach Rd & Buxton Street, 
Mount Hawthorn WA 6016

*Tickets can be ordered online or at the door for $25. Visit The Jazz Cellar Website for more information here
*This post was in collaboration with Eventbrite for their Hometown Hunt project.

Friday, June 19, 2015

Life Lately: Little things

Friday, June 19, 2015
I'm going to be honest and say that I haven't been feeling great the past week. This is what usually happens come mid year break: amidst the constant studying I really look forward to the holidays but once they arrive I feel a bit lost on what to do. I am happy that I have picked up a few more shifts at work, but being someone who thrives on always having something to do or a project to work on, I can't help but feel a little useless or like I'm wasting precious time. In addition, despite being an introvert, I love the feeling of going into uni and being surrounded by my peers and seeing their faces almost every day during the week.

With too much time to spare, my mind inevitably wanders and I begin to worry about things like my future, notably my career, and how or if I'll even be able to find a job after University. The days seem to fly by, I've been working on a few freelance jobs on the side, and yet, I still haven't been feeling satisfied. It can be hard when you feel like you're perpetually stuck in a rut.

So, in an effort to take a step back from everything on my mind, I allowed myself to enjoy a morning of fun with friends, and it brightened my spirits like nothing else, and then I took the rest of the day at a slow pace. I remembered that little activities can do a world of good. I decided to write a post dedicated to a few little things that have made me happy and from now on, I hope to seek out activities that will provide meaning for me, no matter how big or small.

1. The most delicious stack of pancakes (and probably the prettiest too!)
2. Finding little snippets of text in a book and having it resonate so profoundly. I've really been enjoying reading I Wrote This for You during quiet moments (best for bus rides)
3. I really love how flowers are back in 'vogue' (even seen plated in cafes and restaurants. See: first photo). These images bring a huge smile to my face. Check out my Pinterest Board Floral Arrangements here
4. I started putting together my package for the Oh Comely Package Swap! I've really been enjoying putting care into the package and shopping for little gifts for my perfect stranger.

What little things have made you smile recently?
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