Estimated reading time:2 minutes, 37 seconds
Everyone onÂ Islington Faces BlogÂ has a story.Â Ben River, 31, is taking up a musical residency in Islington at the innovative venue/barÂ House of Wolf on Upper Street.Â The free gigs start on Wednesday 3 July and will be held every Wednesday after that, from 6-11pm. Ben may be from West London, but he clearly rates live music in Islington. InterviewÂ byÂ Nicola Baird
What instruments do you play?
I write most of my songs on guitar and add other instruments afterwards. [See him playing his song Little did I know on the Emirates cable car across the Thames here.]
How did you start learning guitar?
I grew up in Ladbroke Grove, Iâ€™ve lived there all my life, itâ€™s quite a unique community and I love it. I was about 14 when I picked up a guitar for the first time, I joined a band not long after that, started writing songs quite intensely and I havenâ€™t really stopped since.
Why are you working solo?
I just enjoy writing on my own.Â I do play my songs live with other musicians though.
What’s your elevator pitch for your music – eg, at the House of Wolf?
On the flyer it says â€˜A live alternative folk residency from Ben River with full live bandâ€™.
Where are the live music venues Â you can recommend Â in Islington?
Upper street is full of music venues, you canâ€™t walk more than five minutes without finding one, I played at Filthy Macnasty’s in Amwell Street, EC1 a few months ago, that was a good night. House of Wolf isnâ€™t far at all from Highbury & Islington station, Itâ€™s an interesting venue, so people should enjoy exploring it.
Who do you hope will be watching at House of Wolf (eg, family, friends, etc etc)
I enjoy playing to anyone, so the more the merrier.
How do you prepare for a gig?
Music is what I do. So Iâ€™m either writing, recording, rehearsing or playing live.
Are there any singer-songwriters you admire?
Quite a few songwriters inspire me but Iâ€™d have to mention Bob Dylan. What heâ€™s done has been a great inspiration to me.
Ben River’s gigs at House of Wolf start on Wednesday 3 JulyÂ and every Wednesday after that, from 6 o clock till 11, thereâ€™s no charge to get in, everyone is welcome. House of Wolf is at 181 Upper Street, N1, tel: 020 7288 1470.
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This blog is inspired byÂ Spitalfields LifeÂ written by the Gentle Author.