From Blues to Bach to The Beatles, London has it all when it comes to music.
1. Gig it up at the iconic 100 Club.
Clicking on the ‘History’ section of 100 Club’s website may, for some, just be too much to take. Holding the title of the oldest independent venue in the world, 100 Club has championed all manors of ground breaking scenes including the blues of BB King, the birth of punk with the Sex Pistols and the indie explosion of Oasis. It has now (unsurprisingly) become an institution for intimate secret shows, including comedy and showcasing of exciting new music. 100 thumbs up from us.
100 Oxford St, W1D 1LL
2. Tour shooting locations for some of London’s most famous album covers.
Pink Floyd, Madness, Carly Simpson, David Bowie, The Clash, and of course…The Beatles, have all featured London’s remarkable landmarks and city scape on their iconic album covers. Exploring the city can therefore be a musical feast for the eyes (as well as a brilliant opportunity to attempt to recreate them yourself). You’ll be surprised how many you stumble upon!
3. Have a browse through centuries of fascinating history at the Musical Museum.
Before the days of pick ups, microphones and amps, the world had self-playing instruments in order to listen to music (that is, when it wasn’t being played live…) of which the Musical Museum has a fascinating range – from the tiniest clockwork musical boxes to the ‘Mighty Wurlitzer’.
The Musical Museum, 399 High Street, Brentford, TW8 0DU
4. Have a (Be)bop around in some of London’s best jazz clubs.
It’s no New Orleans, but London’s jazz clubs house some damn cool cats. The legendary Ronnie Scotts is one of the most respected jazz clubs in the world and some of the greatest names in music have performed there (we’re talking Miles Davis and Ella Fitzgerald). Nightjar offers a more speakeasy style while Vortex (a volunteer-led jazz club) serves as one of the UK’s best platforms for jazz, improvised and experimental music. Alternatively, if Jazz is your jam the Royal Albert Hall are hosting a Jazz photography exhibition, on until the 29th November. This is on selected dates only, however, so download the Fever App for more information or visit their website.
5. Take a tour through some of the most legendary rock and roll sites.
There are several ‘walks’ you can take (guided or not) through London, visiting the most iconic rock ‘n’ roll haunts such as the Tin Pan Alley studio (where the Stones recorded their first album), the site of the infamous UFO club and the pub where Jimi Hendrix and Eric Clapton jammed.
Did you know: there are 41 blue plaques situated around the city, each related to a musician. See if you can spot them on your way!
6. Have a stroll down Brook Street to see where Handel and Hendrix lived!
Jimi Hendrix lived in the flat (number 23) just next door to where Handel (number 25) lived centuries before, making a walk down Brook Street one hell of a musical trip down memory lane. The Handel House Museum (whose offices used to be in Hendrix’s house) is dedicated to the life and works of 18th century composer George Frideric Handel. After substantial fundraising, Hendrix’s bedroom has been restored to how it was in 1968-9 along with an additional exhibition and interactive space. Visit Handel & Hendrix for more information. An unlikely pair if we ever saw one!
25 Brook St, W1K 4HB
7. Catch a gig at the Union Chapel.
The Union Chapel is one of London’s most remarkable music venues. An architectural treasure and a working church by day, this award winning venues hosts a huge diverse programme of arts experiences, including some of today’s most reverent musical artists. Keep an eye on their website for what is coming up, which includes special festive music (and film) events.
Union Chapel, Compton Terrace, Islington, N1 2UN
8. Watch the London Philharmonic Orchestra
The London Philharmonic is one of the worlds greatest orchestras, resident at the Royal Festival Hall. This season they are offering a programme not to be missed including a concert with Orozco-Estrada conducting both the Dvořák Cello Concerto and Mahler’s Symphony No. 1 on Wednesday 25th November. If this isn’t enough, Fever are selling tickets for only £9! You just need to download the app, purchase your tickets and you’ll be on your way to experience a night of musical magic.
Royal Festival Hall, Southbank Centre, Belvedere Rd, London SE1 8XX