Lower East Side in New York is constantly whirling with the young, the hip and the restless. You’ll be sure to stumble upon the best thrift stores (home to the $8 faux fur vest), shots of espresso (served by a man with a handlebar moustache, obviously) and, of course, the best underground music scenes. It’s no surprise to find yourself entering the latest low lit lounge through an old English phone booth in the back of the hot dog shop next door. And when you find a bar with $4 potent margaritas and the best $7 spicy chicken sandwich catering to a four-act music show just upstairs, I would go right ahead and call that a significant win/win situation.

magPiano’s (158 Ludlow St) has been home to the Melting Pot Crew every second Wednesday of the month for a while now. The free food set out around 7:30pm obviously goes fast, but that’s no reason to throw in the towel. Vocalists Jon Braman and Arthur Lewis, rappers, MaG (Bronx) and Webbafield (Brooklyn) were among the few to take the stage. Backed by live instrumentals, an enthusiastic crowd, and an intimate bar, both emcees really laid down the performances and the freestyles. It was hard to keep myself off the dance floor.

MaG recently dropped his latest LP last month Freedom, available for download here. Be sure to check out Webbafield’s latest project The Slumrise Symphony coming soon.

Photos by: Reza Ladak

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