London Live & Direct - Pt. 3

Alexees Hobson (
Thu, 21 Mar 1996 07:53:42 -0500 (EST)

Back in the States. Here's the last part of the trilogy...

My last week in the London office was hectic, but I found some time
to enjoy the London nightlife... and the many great restaurants and
pubs!!! But let me try and stay within the topic. :)

The weekend before last, I visited the exotic Mambo Inn, the place where
Gerry, Rita, Max and guest DJs make the walls of this place sweat with
exotic rhythms and beats from Africa, South America and all over the globe.
The place is located on a dark Brixton street called Loughborough Street,
in a dark Brixton hotel called Loughborough Hotel. The doorpeople do a
quick body search, you pay your 3 pounds and you suddenly enter a colorful
world of rhythm and dance.

People come here to dance. Some also come to find women. The men here
are like vultures, :) so if you see a woman you want to dance with, make
sure you make a move quickly cause someone else will. Anyway, it's better
to come here with plenty of friends and have a good time dancing rather
than watching the feeble attempts that some guys make... :)

The music is tremendous. Don't expect any outstanding mixing, but do
expect great music selection. Uptempo beats from a colorful palette of
world music ranging from salsa to mambo to rai to jazz to african pop to
anything else that will keep the bodies moving. And you do see a
display of awesome moves. Some couples were showcasing their great
coordination and fluid body movement all night long.

Overall, we had a blast at the Mambo Inn - I highly recommend it to
anyone that visits London. Also, that weekend, the Ruby + Red Snapper gig
took place at the ULU. I didn't go but I heard that Red Snapper were
excellent. The Snappers are building quite a name for themselves in
London town. Rumour has it that some members work at the Mars Bar, a
place where the ever-present Mr. LTJ Bukem djs (among many other
places). This junglist DJ is everywhere: magazine covers, huge club
nights, remix credits, his own releases; he's the man of the moment.
Anyway, the Mars Bar should definitely be on your "to-visit" lists, great
atmosphere, great music, great people.

I also visited the Jazz Cafe to see the Come Together jam session
featuring Jessica Lauren, Tony Remy, the bass and drums of Mother Earth,
this percussion-type fellow, and Acid Jazz Records' newly signed Xan, a
woman with a great stage presence and voice. They played for an hour and
a half, with only 30 minutes of practice before the gig. I would
describe it as a physchedelic jazz rock soul experience. The band was
tight. Tony Remy stole the spotlight with his great guitar playing, as
did Xan with her voice (who did Rock Creek Park without any backing
vocals - she did them herself :)). Jessica Lauren made a good effort on
the keys, while the rest of the group were providing a solid backdrop.
The Jazz Cafe itself is a beautiful club in Camden Town, an intimate
place to see some of the greatest jazz perfomers live.

Camden Market was not as cheap as I thought it would be. You can find
some great deals on sweaters and second-hand clothes, but the records are
expensive. You can find some great old jazz funk soul records (YUM!) but
we're talking 10 pounds and more (a lot more). Example: I found
Coldcut's "What's That Noise" lp for 10 pounds - I found the same record
in the States (and in better condition) for 3 bucks. "Aretha Now" I
found for 15 pounds - you can easily find that here for 8 dollars or less.
Anyway, I did buy lots of records, like a kid in a candy store I guess.

Jazz On,