Gigs in South London
Much of South London has a bit of a dearth when it comes to live music venues. Although you tend to find the occasional cosy little pub venue which will have a live band or two playing some weekends, there are not as many dedicated live music venues as there are in other parts of the city. Having said that, there are particular areas which buck the trend and can be considered local hotspots when it comes to finding popular music on the south side of the capital.
This part of South London is easily reached from other parts of the capital because of its excellent rail interchanges and the local tube station. Jamm is a great mid-sized live music venue which is easily reached from the underground station and typical of the area. Here, you will get a wide variety of music styles catered for and it is well worth checking out the listings before heading here, especially if you are seeking out a particular genre.
The Brixton Academy is by far the largest live music venue for miles around. It has a wonderful musical heritage and was once played by no less an act than the Rolling Stones, a band much more used to selling out sports stadia. Established acts from both the UK and the United States tend to play in the venue. It is well known for rock music but other styles can be found here as well.
A short walk from both these to venues is Hootananny Brixton. This is a pub venue but the term does not really do it justice because of the impressively high quality stage and audio system in place here. The accent is on reggae and ska, but you will also find singer-songwriters and small rock outfits playing here mid week if that's your taste. At the weekend the place usually gets packed out because of its reputation for good music. It is regularly voted as one of the best small live music venues in the country, let alone the capital.
Just around the corner, on Coldharbour Lane, Dogstar is another smallish venue worth mentioning. Here you will find anything from dubstep to soul and even the occasional evening given over to live comedy instead of music.
The Grand in Clapham is a great venue which has music on most nights of the week. The bands play in a listed Victorian building that can hold well over a thousand people in the audience. It has an unusual layout with three floors that feature cascading balconies.
The Half Moon in Putney is another pub which is more of a live music venue than anything else. Located near the banks of the Thames at Putney Bridge, it has a programme of bands, acoustic acts, DJs and comedy from time to time. And the beer is pretty good, too.
South East London
One of the largest performance auditoria in London, the O2 which was formerly known as the Greenwich Arena, is located right next to the Thames. Here you will find some of the biggest musical acts in the world performing, such as Rhianna and Katy Petty. The structure was never designed for live music, but that does not stop people flocking here to enjoy the performances.
Just a few miles from the massive O2 you get to the centre of Greenwich. One of the best undiscovered live music pubs in the whole of southeast London is hidden away here. The Pelton Arms has live music on most Fridays and Saturdays and, although the music stops promptly at 11pm, you can find some excellent live bands playing here on most weekends.
Brixton and Greenwich are home to a large number of South London businesses, so if yours is one of them, do yourself a favour and check out some of these local shows.