Sunday 22nd July

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Melissa James
Photo credit: Mike Watts

Melissa James @ Green Note + CD Competition

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First up was Vincent Burke in a natural, warm and easy, performance. What else would you expect when singing about pianos falling down the stairs! Somewhat in the style of old-school balladeers such as Jake Thackray and Tom Lehrer; funny, wise, droll and just jaunty enough to get your feet tapping. Plus a lovely version of Smokey Robinson’s ‘You’ve Really Got a Hold on Me’ replete with new middle-eight. Burke is also a bit McCartney-ish, reinvented with a quirkier, folksier, edge. The punters demanded more.

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Category: Culture
Denis Quilligan; illustration by Mario Herran; Skopje
Denis Quilligan; illustration by Mario Herran; Skopje

Playerist Poets Live @ Poetry Cafe

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Some enchanted evening for ‘Playerist Poets Live’ at the Poetry Society in Covent Garden. Although the ‘Poetry Place’ was quite literally drank dry. More’s the pity when last time time had to be called; ‘more’ being the operative word next time.

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Category: Art
Playerlist
Illustration by Chris Sav (exclusive commission for PPL).

Playerist Poets Live // March 14 // Poetry Cafe

Playerist performance collective returns to the Poetry Cafe on Friday March 14 for a very special night indeed. Doors open at 7.30pm from when guests will be treated to the ethereal folk music of the immensely talented singer-songwriter Skopje. The cafe is open all afternoon so why not arrive early and relax with the scrumptious food and drink on offer. This comfy and cosy venue is centrally located, in the heart of Covent Garden, but tucked-away so check the map. For literary lovers there are shelves of magazines for browsing, with the guarantee of no loud pop muzak.

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Category: Art
THE GALLERY CAFE - KAZ3 -
Kaz Simmons performing live at the Café Gallery, Bethnal Green. Photo by Mike Watts.

Gig in a Gallery: Melissa James + Kaz Simmons

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2013 Series

Café Gallery, Bethnal Green

‘Gig in a Gallery’ is a live music event with heart and soul. A tonic on a school night, it makes for a terrific evening at the scrumptious Café Gallery in Bethnal Green – and the menu is mouth-wateringly tempting! As often goes with smaller gigs, the sound-checks and warm-ups accommodated the 7pm start. But this unhurried event proved an excellent opportunity to kick-off those working shoes and fully relax. The first of a series, it featured the talented and personable folk chanteuse Kaz Simmons supporting a fresh yet accomplished set by a radiant Melissa James. Ensure not to miss Malory Torr on August 14th performing at Canvas in Wimbledon Village High Street. Kevin Leo will follow on September 12 at the House Gallery in Camberwell Church Street. And by no means least, Tom Robinson headlines the Queen of Hoxton on October 30th.

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Category: Art
MELISSA JAMES
Photo credit: Mark Guthrie

Melissa James: A life’s work

Melissa James is an up-and-coming singer with influences in the Roots, Blues and Jazz idioms. Over the last five years she has experienced a fascinating journey, in making the step forward to her present life in music. I am thrilled to meet Melissa at one of her favourite tea shops in Soho. As we settle into comfy armchairs in this easy and ambient space, it seems to accommodate her personality. Melissa instantly divulges a love of nature and the opportunities for wandering the riverside in London – recommending watering-holes en route – “So I don’t actually get very far!” She throws out a warm chuckle and lifts her head back depreciatingly.

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Category: Culture