On the verge of heading home after spending a long and enjoyable day teaching, I was snapped out of my routine by the sweet, driving and utterly distinctive sounds of Bluegrass. At first I thought it might just be a cool sounding record wafting over from the next door restaurant, but when I poked my head around the corner I could see a gathering of musicians in a semi-circle plucking and strumming away. This called for a definite beer stop!
As I stepped over the threshold into the bar I was greeted by the friendly and familiar face of Hugh Burns, a highly accomplished musician, tutor and warm-hearted gentleman. I quickly gathered that this was a Bluegrass session including some of the students he teaches at the academy. I perched on a comfy wooden seat and started to tap along to the steady rhythms and sipped my beer in quiet appreciation.
London Bluegrass Jam Session
Bluegrass is certainly experiencing a boom in popularity recently, and from listening to the players it was easy to see why. There was a wide range not just of instruments but also of abilities and ages amongst the musicians, and even though at times it was a little rough around the edges, the energy and chugging groove of the music was just right. As a lifelong fan of acoustic and ‘folk’ music, this session seemed to embody the inclusivity and fun that should always be at the heart of live music.
A great evening at a very mellow venue….I’d highly recommend keeping your ears out for this one to all Folk and particularly Bluegrass players and aficionados in London 🙂
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