Intimate gigs in boozers are becoming harder and harder to sustain across the capital, with establishments under pressure to run more obviously profit-driven ventures.
This is no better illustrated than by the recent conversion of Kentish Town Road stalwart The Oxford’s first-floor venue, once home to a seminal jazz night, into an upmarket cocktail bar.
And yet aside from bringing in people who might not otherwise be spending a Monday evening – for example – in the confines of a bar, live music harks back to the very essence of pub culture and its place in our community.
It’s this that we explore inside this month’s issue, focusing on a handful of locals still flying the flag for interesting (and importantly, either cheap or free) live music. We hunt out the jazz and blues nights at canalside watering hole the Con Cellar Bar, and meet Whiskey Mick, who performs in Kentish Town pubs on consecutive nights every week. We also speak to the brains behind the Fiddler’s Elbow and Rose & Crown about their creative live schedules.
Elsewhere in the issue we look at a five-day booze ‘n’ music festival taking place just down the road, while longterm resident Observer Food Monthly editor Allan Jenkins tells us about his new memoir. We also roadtest a handful of new and revamped cafes, restaurants and pubs in Chalk Farm, South End Green and West Kentish Town. Grab a copy from a stockist below.
MAIN KENTISHTOWNER STOCKISTS
Permanent Distribution Units
Kentish Town West Overground
Tufnell Park Underground
Gospel Oak Overground
Hampstead Heath Overground
Outside Phoenicia supermarket, Kentish Town Road
Southampton Arms, Fields Beneath, The Grafton, Kentish Town Sports Centre, Tapping The Admiral, Camden Town Brewery, Camden’s Daughter, Zabludowicz Collection, Roundhouse, Bowery Bagel, Q Grill, Lantana, Camden Market Hall upstairs, Spread Eagle, Coffee Jar, Cote, Leyas Coffee, The Colonel Fawcett, Casa Tua, Owl Bookshop, Flaxon Ptootch, Scratchline Tattoo, The Lion & Unicorn, The Oxford, Kentish Town Library, Harrys Fine Food, The Vine, The Junction Tavern,Ruby Violet, Bear + Wolf, The Pineapple, The Abbey Tavern, Arancini Factory Cafe, Zing Zing, The Bull & Last, Truffles Deli, Owl Bookshop, Flaxon Ptootch, The Star, Lord Palmerston, Tufnell Park Tavern, Future & Found, Rose & Crown, The Lord Stanley, Oskar Pink, Dirty Burger, The College Practice, Queen’s Crescent Library, Fierce Grace Yoga – Queen’s Crescent, Marios Cafe, The Stag, Beetroot Deli, Black Truffle, The Spoke, St John’s