Live music pop-up acts are performing in three locations around Twickenham every Saturday throughout July.
The ‘High Tide Ripples’ project was organised and funded by Twickenham’s Business Improvement District (BID) in lieu of High Tide Festival, which was postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
High Tide Festival attracted crowds of up to 3,000 people when it launched in 2019 and businesses are aiming to recapture some of that excitement with a wide array of musical acts.
Twickenham BID chair and Eel Pie Records co-owner Kevin Jones said: “It was amazing to see thousands of people gathered around Church Street watching and appreciating the music.
“It was described as the best day in Twickenham for decades and I think that’s probably true, so this year we’re trying to keep the live music vibe going by bringing it back on a smaller scale.
“High Tide Ripples are like ripples from the festival and it’s all about local businesses collaborating together to make something good happen in the town and to make Twickenham an appealing place to visit.”
Acoustic acts will play from 12:30pm to 3:00pm, rotating every half hour between pop-ups located at the top of Church Street, just outside Waitrose and by Emporium flower shop.
The lineup of performers has included so far a French chanteuse, a flamenco band and Mandolin Jack: a mandolin player singing everything from bluegrass to blues.
Jack moved to Twickenham in 1971, managing to catch a live jazz gig at Twickenham’s famous Eel Pie Island and experience the hotel’s sprung dance floor the same year it burned down.
He has performed regularly at the Rifleman pub for years, often playing jazz and country songs on the keyboard alongside other musicians, and looks forward to the return of gig nights.
Jack said: “It’s so great being able to do this today because it’s about local businesses and we haven’t had music in town for over a year.
“We’ve been playing music at the Rifleman every Thursday for a long time and it’s been stunning. Some nights have been so electric.
“It’s great because we’ll start throwing songs to each other, thinking we’ll learn these for when everything can start happening again – hopefully in a few months.”
Kevin also said he was keeping his fingers crossed for High Tide Festival to return later this year, meaning residents might not have long to wait for more live music in the future.