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Also on St Peter’s Square is the headquarters of South
Asian Arts UK. Since 1997, SAA-uk have been tapping into
the vibrant cultural diversity of Leeds by delivering workshops
in South Asian music and dance, alongside performances from
renowned British and international artists. It’s worth checking
their website ( to see what’s on – British tabla
master Bhupinder Singh Chaggar is a regular fxture with his
world music band Samay, who recently collaborated with the
likes of Corinne Bailey Rae and Manchester’s Hallé Orchestra.
Another cultural quarter venue is Leeds College of Music.
Te Venue is open to the public and regularly hosts recitals, jazz
concerts, exclusive appearances by world musicians, as well as
performances by current students and alumni. Former students
have included Damon Gough (Badly Drawn Boy), Submotion
Orchestra and dubstep producer Rusko.
Amongst more recent alumni are up and coming Leeds
band ICS (I Call Shotgun) who have been setting the local
scene alight and recently became the frst live band ever to
play at legendary club night BacktoBasics. Look out for them
performing at venues across the city this year.
At the other side of the city, Te Cockpit nestles
underneath the train station arches, playing host to upcoming
bands across three rooms most nights of the week. A real place
to spot the next big thing before they (hopefully) move onto
big venues. It’s worth exploring a few venues just outside the
city centre to get a favour of the range of music on ofer in
Leeds. Hop on the bus and pop over to leafy Chapel Allerton.
It’s home to the Seven Arts bar and venue, specialising in jazz
and world music. Last February saw the legendary Stan Tracey
– resident pianist at Ronnie Scott’s jazz club in the 1960s –
perform here.
While you’re there, be sure to check out the other
nightspots, restaurants and cafes in this cosmopolitan area of
the city, and if you feel like journeying on for more musical
discoveries, there are few better places than the student hub of
Hyde Park. Slap bang in the middle you’ll fnd the Brudenell
Social Club, recently named by the
as one of the best
small music venues in the country. With hundreds of artists
visiting each year, looking through the listings is like looking at
a who’s who of cult bands from around the world.
Hidden Music Gems