Motor sports not your thing? Don’t worry. The inaugural KoolTai music festival happens this weekend, on 11 November, at the Venetian’s Cotai Arena, offering a rocking alternative to anybody with Grand Prix fatigue.
Helmed by local promoters Lawrence Che and Jones Chong, who have previously brought talents like Hong Kong pop legend Eason Chan to local stages, KoolTai features both big-name international acts and a pool of lesser-known regional acts like Taiwanese singer-songwriter Joanna Wang and Thai band Getsunova.
Here are some artists you won’t want to miss.
Formed in London in the late 1980s, Suede took the music world by storm with tracks like Beautiful Ones (see above) and Animal Nitrate. Released in 1993, their eponymous debut album became one of the fastest-selling records in the United Kingdom at that time, before earning the band the much-coveted Mercury Music Prize.
Although frequently namechecked as Britpop pioneers, in truth the English alternative rock band is darker and edgier compared to the likes of Blur and Oasis.
See for yourself as frontman Brett Anderson, Neil Codling, Simon Gilbert, Richard Oakes and Mat Osman make their Macao debut before touring to Taipei, Tokyo and Singapore.
Most known for her anti-capitalism anthem Price Tag and upbeat hit Bang Bang (see video above) in collaboration with Ariana Grande and Nicky Minaj, Jessie J is an electrifying presence on stage.
The 35-year-old British singer-songwriter was one of the mentors for BBC’s popular singing competition show The Voice UK and has amassed a global fan base through music that frequently advocates for self-expression and the empowerment of young women.
[See more: 10 minutes with Kian Egan of Westlife]
Corinne Bailey Rae
It’s hard to register the fact that Corinne Bailey Rae’s smash hit Put Your Records On was released nearly two decades ago but the timeless, feel-good song resonates with listeners today – just as it did when it conquered swaths of fans upon the release of her eponymous debut album in 2003. Five years later, the soulful artist (who’s also an actress) won the Grammy Award for Best R&B Performance for her song Is This Love at the 2008 Grammy Awards.
After years away from the music limelight, the singer’s latest record Black Rainbows (which drew inspiration from an exhibition on Black history by artist Theaster Gates) has received rave reviews – even dubbed her best work yet by some. This weekend, concert-goers have a rare chance to see an R&B artist at the peak of her powers.
Brazilian-born Japanese singer Lisa Ono is an ambassador of Bossa Nova, which the artist gracefully melds with jazz. Over the span of her nearly four-decade career, Ono has gained international acclaim for her mellow vocals and beautiful renditions of songs by Brazilian masters, like António Carlos Jobim’s Garota de Ipanema.
Her Kooltai concert on 11 November won’t be her first in Macao, but it sure is a highly anticipated return of the singer who’s been credited for popularising Bossa Nova in Japan and elsewhere.
Tickets to Kooltai Music Festival can be purchased here, with prices starting at 788 patacas.