Take Note! Our Favourite Places to Hear Live Music

Take Note! Our Favourite Places to Hear Live Music

Shakespeare famously wrote 'if music be the food of love, play on'. This particular phrase opens 'Twelfth Night', with Orsino musing that an excess of music might cure his love obsession in the same way eating too much food cures one's hunger. Well, Shakespeare might have been on to something, as science proves that listening to music produces dopamine - also known as the happy hormone - in the brain. While you may need to do more than listen to Adele on repeat to fix your romantic turmoil, you can get a wonderful dose of dopamine at these fantastic live music experiences around the world...


Flamenco in Andalusia, Spain

Notoriously passionate, the Spanish know a thing or two about romance. The famous art-form of Flamenco dancing originated in the Andalusian communities of southern Spain and is so entrenched in Spanish culture that it is listed on UNESCO's list of Intangible Cultural Heritage. While being guided around the country's liveliest bars and clubs and having a go yourself in one-to-one lessons, you'll soon see why it's the most popular dance in Spain with its infectious rhythms, dramatic foot stamping and daring dance moves.


Fez Music Festival, Morocco

Every June, over the course of a week, the Fez Festival of World Sacred Music is held in Morocco. Bringing together artists from all over the world - from Senegalese drummers to Celtic bands - the festival is based on the belief that music can encourage harmony between different cultures. The concerts happen in a variety of venues around the city of Fez and are accompanied by fabulous fringe events like exhibitions and film screenings. Hugely popular, it's best to book well in advance if you're planning on going.


Bossa Nova Music, Brazil

Bossa nova literally translates as 'New Wave', and is a style which ushered in a new era of Brazilian music in the 1950s and 1960s. A silky fusion of samba and jazz with a slower rhythm and poetic lyrics often taken from sonnets, the genre has acquired worldwide fame ever since 'The Girl from Ipanema' entered the US charts in 1964. Head to a lively bar or tiny hideaway to experience the captivating melodies, hypnotic rhythms and understated intimacy that has been casting a spell over people for years.


Polyphonic Singers in Tblisi, Georgia

Visit Georgia and you'll notice how serious a role religion plays in the resident's lives. Young and old, people pour into the churches. We recommend attending at least one service - which will often have a wedding and christening happening at once for good measure - to experience the exquisite singing. Polyphonic vocalists sing two notes at the same time, creating a sound that continuously moves in and out of harmony and with no accompaniment. Georgian choirs are renowned as the world's finest exponents of polyphony, and catching an earful of this wonderful practise is a real treat.


RIFF Festival, Jodhpur, India

'Unique' is probably the most apt word for describing the RIFF Festival in Jodhpur. Timed to coincide with the brightest full moon of the year, this three day/four night festival is set against the spectacular backdrop of the Mehrangarh Fort. A not-for-profit event endorsed by UNESCO, it aims to boost the livelihoods of the local musicians and craftspeople of Rajasthan. You could end up seeing anything from traditional gospel singers, to British beat boxing; Spanish Flamenco to traditional folk music. Allow your senses to be bombarded as you are engulfed in the exotic sounds, scents and vibrant colours of this wonderfully eccentric festival.