22.12.10

Daily Moan #4: pubs with no beer

I'm kicking myself that I didn't leave for London earlier last night. Everything slowed down because of the weather (and no, I'm not going to moan about the snow!) and so I went straight to the 100 Club to see David Devant and his Spirit Wife. Or rather the two support acts beforehand. So, I could have gone to The Champion, the usual meeting haunt of Devantees, and enjoyed £2 pints of Sam Smith's finest. As it was, it was straight to the bar of the 100 Club, only to find that the two beer pumps were out of action (they had run out the night before) and the only drinks on offer were continental-style lagers for nearly four pounds a pint! Well, I can forgive the 100 Club - the legendary venue is under threat of closure. I first went there in 1965 to see Jesse 'Lone Cat' Fuller and his one-man band, and have returned many times since to see Devant, The Rutles, Wreckless Eric and many other fine acts.

This Moan should really have been entitled 'Bars with no beer', because the places I have a beef with are venues such as Brighton Dome, Komedia and the Latest Music bar, all of which sell overpriced lager and you're lucky to find even a bottle of proper beer. At the Dome recently, where I went to see Robin Ince's excellent 'Nine Lessons and Carols for Godless People' the bar had on sale just Carlsberg or Manger's cider (at some exorbitant price I expect)! They do sometimes, mostly during the Festival, have a barrel of Dark Star on the counter, but not that evening - and the interval was too short to pop over to the Waggon and Horses for a pint of Harvey's. Please music bars (I don't even bother with trendy young persons' 'cocktail' bars), please please offer proper beer to your more discerning punters, preferably sourced from local breweries!

If you were wondering why I didn't post a Moan yesterday and laugh that I already failed my New Year's resolution even before New Year's Day, it was because I was busy writing stroppy letters to Virgin Media's Complaints Department. More on that in due course, I shouldn't wonder. Meanwhile some videos of a fantastic Dave Devant set, with new songs, stories read from My Magic Life and the Baron Gilvan taking on the role of Spectral Roadie are now appearing on Youth Tube.
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