Shinjuku Pit Inn


10th July 2010: Jazz has been huge in Japan since whenever, but unless you go searching, it's easy to miss the fact that Tokyo has a thumping great live scene. Sites like tokyojazzsite.com are great for getting around the language barrier.

So, it's Saturday afternoon and we're looking for a place to chill so we jump on a train to Shinjuku sanchōme and by my very rough guide we manage to find the Shinjuku Pit Inn. As is always the case with food and music, it's a basement venue.

I had no idea who we might get to see, but we were very lucky to catch a 5 piece outfit who played a 3 hour set through the afternoon (sunglasses definitely required when we emerged back onto the street in the early evening).


This was trad jazz at it's most enthusiastic and dedicated best. Who else would be playing in a dingy, smoke-filled basement on a Saturday afternoon instead of out shopping or lazing the weekend away?

And being in the audience is a serious business - the rows of desks are at once a reminder of a stricter scholastic past and yet a wonderful setting to prop up you G&T, smoke if you please, and just get lost in the music.

The ¥2500 cover charge (including drink) is not bad. I only wish I had discovered this place when I was working in Japan. I can't think of a better way of relaxing on a Saturday afternoon.

Blogarhythm: Relax, take it easy - Mika: Live In Cartoon Motion

NB: I am retro-blogging Tokyo which is why this post is a little delayed