No one will argue that a noisy restaurant is unpleasant, but music, if any, should
also be appropriate to the setting. I organize my mind with Bach, boogie with Aretha, and in my weaker moments wish I could find a man who could love me with the rich purity of Aaron Neville's voice. A few notes can transport me from when the Shirelles marked my social universe to when the bubbling tama of Youssou N'Dour and King Sunny Ade's conversational dúndùns permeated my expanding world. So when I enter a restaurant, I occasionally find that my enjoyment and understanding are defined as much by what is on the box as by what is on the plate. Bethania's plaintive wail reminds me of boozy nights in Pelourinho dives, the rocking Marley skank makes me hanker for serious jerk, rebetika makes me want to cry in my avgolemono. I can even stand limited amounts of Gipsy Kings with proper bribes of olives and... More >>>
By Michael Kenneth Lopez
Siam Garden: Inside lurk Charley Pride, Asian elevator music, and yums of varying yumminess.