Rosie Stimpson’s Top 5 Live Music Venues

Rosie Stimpson, owner of live music venues Nightjar and Oriole, and co-owner of Swift, shares her top 5 live music venues.

The Lexington. Rosie says, ‘This gem on the hill between King’s Cross and Islington combines Americana with rock n roll and has something for everyone. There’s a lounge bar downstairs to enjoy fine whiskies, including its own house bourbon, or upstairs there’s live music seven nights a week with DJs to follow. A stalwart of London’s music scene.’ 

The Lexington, 96-98 Pentonville Road, N1 9JB


The Green Note. Rosie says, ‘Begun by two friends and music lovers The Green Note is an exceptional venue. Some hallowed musicians have graced its stage (Amy Winehouse, Ed Sheeran, Leonard Cohen) and it continues to give rise to established and up-and-coming artists in the fields of folk, blues, jazz, world, country, Americana, bluegrass and singer-songwriters.’

The Green Note, 106 Parkway, Camden Town, NW1 7AN


Upstairs at Ronnie’s. Rosie says, ‘If Ronnie Scott’s is known for its hush-thou reverence as the music is played, Upstairs at Ronnie’s is the opposite. Plush red sofas, a dance floor, thumping live music and drinks with umbrellas – this is old school, good time fun.’ 

Upstairs at Ronnie’s, 47 Frith Street, W1D 4HT


Jamboree. Rosie Says, ‘Reminiscent of the European cabaret dens of the 20’s and 30’s Jamboree is raw and raucous. It is one of the musicians’ go to places where they can experiment with their music and try out new things. Under threat of closure recently it was kept alive by the same musicians so go celebrate its very existence.’

Jamboree, 566 Cable Street, E1W 3HB


Kansas Smitty’s. Rosie says, ‘Owned and managed by some of London’s finest musicians, who also comprise its house band by the same name, Kansas Smitty’s puts music first. This is where to go to hear virtuoso playing in sounds that recall 20’s New Orleans and the American big bands of the 30’s and 40’s. It’s as close as you can get to as it was.’ 

Kansas Smitty’s, 63-65 Broadway Market, E8 4PH