Taking Time Out for Time Out
Six months ago, I wondered
if the comprehensive listings magazine Time Out would provide added value for those of us wanting to know about events here before they happen rather than reading reviews of gigs and exhibitions we'd love to have been to.
I was one of the first readers of the original London magazine
first published in 1968 by Tony Elliott. I then gravitated for a while to City Limits
which was set up as a rival by disenchanted Time Out employees after Elliott abandoned the worker's co-operative and the equal pay structure. The latter magazine finally ceased publication in 1993
due to falling sales and advertising.
Time Out remains, and is now the major listings magazine throughout the world with editions for Amsterdam, Beijing, Chicago, Dublin, Florence, Hong Kong, Istanbul ...erm, where's Jakarta? .... Kuala Lumpur and on to V for Venice.
But, hey, listen up, I've got a copy of the March issue, a complimentary copy as it happens which saves me Rp.33,000 (c.$3). Not that I'm a tightwad, which I am, but I doubt that I'll be subscribing as this isn't the magazine for me.
A look at their website
told me that.
Let me nitpick.Get ready to rock the Big Durian... The newest issue of Time Out Jakarta has hit the newsstands and it's full of March! Music! Madness! Jakarta's known for having one of the best music scenes in all of Asia, and we have an in-depth look at the city's hippest music scenes and scenesters.
I'm not, and never have been, a "scenester".Wanna know where to catch the best blues or electronica performances? Wanna know how to blend into the headbanging crowd at a punk rock show, or dress up like a dangdut demigoddess?
Nope, I don't wanna know, not even how to be a dangdut
demigod.But maybe you don't want to blend in; you'd rather stand out and be a rock star in your own right! Our feature on 'How to be a rock star' will give you all the tips you need to break in and stay on top of the cutthroat world of music.
I probably do want to blend in, so if I were to be a musician I'd want to be a bass player in a jazz group.We also bring you all the latest info on the hottest happenings around Jakarta. See who our critics chose as the must see acts at this year's Java Jazz Festival.
What? No mention of Mike Stern
, or Tohpati
and Dewa Budjana
together - possibly the only acts who played anything other than 'lounge' music.Find out where to hear the best live music in bars around the city. Learn who serves the best coffee in Jakarta.
Not bad, but geared to the cocktail lounge set except for Cocktail and Friends in Jalan Jaksa where the Bintang Beer is recommended...Check out our interview with sexy siren Anggun
with pics to justify the tags here
The Jakarta Post had a very similar interview a couple of months back.You'll find all of that, plus our comprehensive up-to-date listings of the best events, activities, and venues in Jakarta.
'Best' is, of course, subjective. However, I'd rate the bookshops section mainly for its mention of Gudang Buku in Pasar Festival with "100,000 rare and antique books to choose from
There are a couple of interesting but slim feature articles about Jakarta, including the underground secrets of Kota, already extensively covered in the Post.
Otherwise, the magazine is a consumer's delight - the section Consume has the new Blackberry, but no info on where to buy a jar of blackberry jam. There's also a full page ad for Panasonic fridges - eh?
So, to sum up, if you're single and fancy free with disposable income, then this is the glossy listings magazine for you - unless you strenuously object to being called a bule
What might tempt me to subscribe would be fewer reviews of western books, music and films lifted/licensed from other publications and more of local interest. And why is there nothing about the election?
For those of us who like the occasional outing as a treat rather than a lifestyle, I'd suggest something along the lines of these ideas lifted from the London edition:
# 101 things to do before you leave London
# London's best unsung museums
# London on a budget
# Free LondonFreebie food, gratis gigs, cost-free culture and nights out for nowt - Time Out delivers.
Well not for me here, but I do hope the local edition is able to survive the economic crunch. Perhaps they could widen their circulation if they heed some of my suggestions, and yours too if you'd care to leave a comment.