Monday, January 24, 2011

Beer and Blues - You Need Two Awesomes to Make One 'Aint Nothin But...The Blues' Pub

Ah London, how I miss you! London is a fascinating destination for any music lover. I discovered and re-discovered classic rock, heavy metal, alternate rock, psychedellic, english folk, blues, jazz, tribal and so many other forms of music in the by-lanes of this beautiful city. But by far the most amazing music venue in London was this dingy little pub on Kingly Street in Soho called Aint Nothin' But....The Blues.

Aint Nothinin'.. is actually a corridor of a pub, dingy is an understatement for the feel of this place. It's all wood with blues memorabilia on all the walls and ceilings. The pub tends to get super crowded by 830 pm on weekends and on the evening of a major gig. The capacity of the pub is about 75 people max, so you gotta make your presence felt early on. The pub usually has an artist performing almost every evening starting at 10 and closing at around 1230am.

Blues as a music form is very personal to the artist performing it. The lyrics originate in mundane hardships, work related woes, cheating wives etc, which means almost everybody who isn't born in to royalty can associate with it. Because of the nature of the music I try establishing a one to one relationship with the artist, so I try getting front seats to a blues gig. And the front seats here means you can actually count the nose hair of the artist.

Once, I was with my buddy Jeremy Fernandes, who shared my passion for the blues and introduced me to the pub, and we bought our Guinness' and weaved ourselves to the front seats. We found ourselves sitting across two Asian chicks, one of whom was pretty pretty. Before the gig started we tried our best to kinda attract their attention/make conversation etc, but I think we were too much into our Guinness' plus I don't think they spoke English. They also had stern faces and whispered often into each other ears while making big rude eyes at us...

So the gig started: harmonica, acoustic guitar, slappy slap double bass and a vocalist who was absolutely awesome. I forget the name of the band but we were all measly little rats to these pied pipers. Anywho, the tempo and the energy of the place began to get pretty wild, the vocalist climbed on the table while performing which drove the crowd nuts and the Asian chicks finally smiled at us and began dancing. That's the power of this place, it can loosen the hardest of faces and melt the strongest of barriers.

The acoustics of this place, owing to its woodiness, are amazing. The speakers might be a little old, but the sound is crisp as could be. And its so cozy indoors, with the dim yellow lights and neon signs, that the London chill right outside doesn't seem to bother you too much.

Another awesome thing about this place is that, because the queue to get in is pretty crazy sometimes, these guys have put a projector and speaker outside for the queued up people. It's pretty badass that the wall they use to project the goings-on belongs to The Hamley's Toy Store.

Rating : 8.5/10
Address : 20 Kingly Street, Soho, London W1B 5PZ

No comments:

Post a Comment