where's the music?
I learned something strange tonight. Over the past few years the Turkish government has been seriously effecting the nightlife and music scene of Istanbul. Starting with the law that bar's can't have tables in front of their business because that meant that people were drinking outside, and now with the law that people can't smoke inside. On top of that, now bar's can't promote their business based on alcohol...
1. The bars are often so small that having tables outside is almost a necessity if you are also going to have a stage with musicians.
2. The people here SMOKE. They smoke a lot. Creating this separation (though much more pleasant for us non-smokers) makes everything feel so split up. I hate to say it but the bars I've been to that do still allow smoking (I'm not sure if they are just breaking the law or if it's according to the size of the room?) feel like everyone wants to stay in there and be together.
3. Bar's can't promote their business based on alcohol... they are BARS. *smacks own forehead in confusion
It seems that the repercussion of all these rules and regulations is that the bars are not making enough money to afford the incredible musicians that are here! So, walking down what is the music strip off of Istiklal pretty much all you see and hear are Turkish Pop covers played by either one man with a Saz or guitar, sometimes with a small backup band. Not too exciting, I'll tell you that much. But the bars still want live music and it's what they can afford.
I am glad that the musicians I want to see aren't budging on their price, because they are worth a lot. I'm just wondering if I'll ever get to see them at a regular place and not at a 50+ Lira fancy dinner show performance.
For now I'll just listen to songs of the late Selim Sesler and dance around my living room.