jazz pepe, shinjuku
Jazz Pepe closed in November 2016, in sad circumstances. The owner of the building, in which 77 year-old Okuma-san had been running his bar minutes from Shinjuku station since 1969, wanted to 'make it nicer', and as such had served him notice as a tenant.
We arranged to return and say goodbye to mark the end of this enduring, classic old-style Japanese jazz bar, only to find it closed; having finally contacted Okuma-san by phone, it would seem that he had suffered a stroke two weeks before shutting up shop. A week later, assured it would be open for its last few evenings, we returned again only to find a notice on the door explaining it would not be opening again 'due to illness'.
Yet another jazz joint steeped in history was gone from the Tokyo landscape forever; it is preserved here on this page, and in the memories of everyone who ever visited it.