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  • Cafe/Coffee music

    Another thread inspired this one:

    What is the best music to play in a cafe or other setting? I mean, we all have our favourite bands etc and we may have our favourite foods to accompany a good brew but what music would you consider ideal to listen to.

    I imagine it would have to be background, something that would enhance rather than dominate the ambience you might enjoy. I know there is a whole genre of music I think they even call cafe style (St Germain, etc) but I think something lightly jazzy, Latin. rhythmic does do it for me. If trying to create a different atmosphere, it could be blues or steamy jazz.

    Any thoughts?

  • #2
    Re: Cafe/Coffee music

    It would have to suit a theme I think or else be non-offensive to most.

    Personally I like blues or jazz but I dont like music in cafes.

    I find it too intrusive for conversation.

    The accoustics in most cafes has never been thought about as far as I can tell and a lot are noisy as it is without adding music to the mix.

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    • #3
      Re: Cafe/Coffee music

      Definitely low volume in a cafe as people are also there for the conversation as you suggested TG. I wonder how much music choice contributes to the popularity of a cafe

      I also think of the 50s and 60s when cafes were also live music venues e.g. Greenwich Village folk scene where Bob Dylan cut his teeth.

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      • #4
        Re: Cafe/Coffee music

        I tend to agree with TG. If I sit down in a cafe it is either to chat or simply watch the world go by while I get my fix. Background music wouldnt really add to my experience and the chat context could even hurt it.

        Live music on the other hand is direct entertainment - as opposed to background music. The two probably shouldnt be compared...

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        • #5
          Re: Cafe/Coffee music

          Music is the life and soul of a cafe...without music the place is dead. The customers get antsy...I see it all the time.

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          • #6
            Re: Cafe/Coffee music

            Which goes back to my earlier question. Is the music part of the attraction of that cafe - an expectation evn?. Different cafes offer different attractions set by decor, music, location, staff and, of course, the quality of the coffee and food on offer.

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            • #7
              Re: Cafe/Coffee music

              Jazz all the way. Charlie Hunter, John Scofield, something with a bit of bite. The music and the coffee seriously enhance one another.

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              • #8
                Re: Cafe/Coffee music

                The best music that is not intrusive is by an artist called
                Brian Eno
                He started his career with Roxy Music back in the 60s

                I am sure including you TG that you can converse in fact the music encourages you to converse

                (Just a little tit bit most people have heard Brian Eno he created the Microsoft Windows 95 Start sound)
                KK

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                • #9
                  Re: Cafe/Coffee music

                  Eno almost invented the concept of ambient music (e.g. Music for Airports) so does deserve a lot of the credit for pioneering the concept of background music (apart from muzak).

                  I guess we could go on about who we would most like to hear. I guess the ultimate test would be would you enter a cafe primarily for the music you hear coming from it. It would for me if I wasnt around my regular haunts. Id at least give it a second look

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                  • #10
                    Re: Cafe/Coffee music

                    Hi all

                    Originally posted by flynnaus link=1215478048/0#0 date=1215478048
                    Another thread inspired this one:
                    I know there is a whole genre of music I think they even call cafe style (St Germain, etc) but I think something lightly jazzy, Latin. rhythmic does do it for me. If trying to create a different atmosphere, it could be blues or steamy jazz.
                    Any thoughts?
                    Its a good way to turn away some of your customers but gain others. No music suits everyone. I hate jazz and would leave a cafe with jazz playing, others would come because of the jazz. I like Eno but others dislike it. And you would end up with just one age group in your cafe, depending on what genre you played and at what loudness level.

                    You also need to pay royalties per customer. Many places dont and they just get away with it but its a risk.

                    Mike

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                    • #11
                      Re: Cafe/Coffee music

                      *If I get in and out in the amount of time it takes to only hear 1/2 a song do you only pay half the royalties?

                      *If I hear the end of one track and the beginning of another is that 1/4 the roylaties each?

                      *If Im not really listening whats the percentage?

                      *Im completely deaf in one ear so would you divide the cost in half for that too?

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                      • #12
                        Re: Cafe/Coffee music

                        Good points TG. Probably partly explains the reason for not paying royalties (apart from not realizing you would be liable to pay). You might also assert that because customers are talking they are only half-listening.

                        On a serious note, I imagine they would either have a flat rate for this or pro rata based on the average number of customers per hour or something.

                        I wonder if you could argue that you are playing the music for yourself, not your customers?

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                        • #13
                          Re: Cafe/Coffee music

                          Im a musician (acoustic rock singer/ guitarist - see left), but do not play in cafes. Most of my work (only occasional these days) is in pubs, which suits my style, allows a reasonable noise level, allows me to entertain and enables some focus on the music.

                          Most cafes are too small and intimate and have bad acoustics for reasonable live music. Also, I think our cafe culture is currently more geared towards a conversational atmosphere, where live music would be intrusive. Most cafe patrons want coffee and/or food and a conversation, in a comfortable setting.

                          Non-intrusive background recorded music is very important but. It can set a comfortable ambiance for a cafe, which, without it, can seem a sterile environment. Every clink of a cup on saucer or clatter of cutlery going back into the drawer is magnified. (I know of a cafe, however, who had a large screen TV on the wall and mostly played 1980s pop film clips - yech! :P)

                          Having said all that, however, I like to see experimentation with live music. Whether it be in an outdoor, garden courtyard type setting, or as a feature of an establishment. I would love to see a Greenwich Village / Dylan era type of movement happen. Why should it be only pub patrons that benefit from having live music?

                          Live music (if done well) is so much more enriching to a day or night out.

                          Just my 2 cents...

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                          • #14
                            Re: Cafe/Coffee music

                            Originally posted by flynnaus link=1215478048/0#8 date=1215484008
                            Eno almost invented the concept of ambient music (e.g. Music for Airports) so does deserve a lot of the credit for pioneering the concept of background music (apart from muzak).

                            I guess we could go on about who we would most like to hear. I guess the ultimate test would be would you enter a cafe primarily for the music you hear coming from it. It would for me if I wasnt  around my regular haunts. Id at least give it a second look
                            I go to a cafe to get a lunch or snack and drink a coffee
                            If music is playing (sometimes its the radio) it does not change the reason I went there in the first place
                            So to answer this question
                            It does not bother me one way or the other
                            KK

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                            • #15
                              Re: Cafe/Coffee music

                              When I had my restaurant a friend gave me a cd "Buena Vista Social Club" I used to play it occasionally and it, above everything else, would get more comments from customers saying they liked it. I personally got bored of it rather quickly. I guess because of the repetitiveness of playing it over.. Lets not talk about xmas carols will we... I hated november & december...

                              Yearly I would pay APRA a fee for me playing background music in the restaurant and you cant tell me that those 80plus year old Cuban Musos from Buena Vista ever saw a cent... rip off IMHO...

                              cheers

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