Recent years have seen a revival of the nation’s love for funk and soul music, thanks to the tireless work of DJs such as Craig Charles and hit singles like ‘Uptown Funk’.
With more and more clubs running funk and soul nights, Ruby Qaimkhani decided to look at some of the best Leeds venues where the genre takes centre-stage.
— Tom Gee Band (@tomgeeband) August 5, 2015
Playing the likes of James Brown and Otis Redding, Smokestack is a Deep South-influenced bar and club with each night of the week dedicated to all things funk and soul. Open from early afternoon until 3am, there are several drink offers available all night. The owners (and the customers) believe Smokestack is the perfect answer to life’s worries, as everyone is expected to leave their problems at the door and enjoy themselves. The club’s divided into two rooms, The Lounge and Roost, and DJs Chico Malo & Paul Dunphy definitely won’t disappoint in getting the crowd to boogie.
159A Lower Briggate, LS1 6LY – 0113 245 2222, smokestackleeds.co.uk
— The HiFi Club (@HiFiClubLeeds) August 3, 2015
For a magical night, take a trip to the hippest place in town! HiFi Club is renowned for playing soulful tracks by artists such as Stevie Wonder and Etta James. There’s also a night influenced by the Northern Soul movement, which will have everyone dancing. As well as playing the hits from yesteryear, contemporary DJs such as Horse Meat Disco and Onra grace the decks on Fridays. It’s no wonder HiFi has won awards for being the best nightclub and best live music venue in the city.
2 Central Road, LS1 6DE – 0113 242 7353, thehificlub.co.uk
Our next recommendation is situated in the jazzy setting of The Wardrobe, a cool venue that serves food as good for the soul as its rhythmic music. Saturdays at Wardrobe are the place to be, as you can enjoy free live music with your delicious food or drink. As well as providing toe-tapping music, musicians such as Franny Eubank and Groove On Top regularly play at this venue. Entrance is free but no one has yet been able to resist the aromatic food from the Soul Kitchen.
St Peter’s Square, LS9 8AH – 0113 3838800, thewardrobe.co.uk
Brudenell Social Club
The Brudenell really is the best in the UK! Hopefully we make it back soon, thanks again @Nath_Brudenell
— CHAIN OF FLOWERS (@flowersinchains) August 11, 2015
Brudenell Social Club is our next destination and the guys here truly embrace music and art in all forms, whether that’s in the shape of rock, funk and soul. With the bar having its feet firmly between Hyde Park and Burley, a whole host of people attend the events, while some famous names who have played here include Craig Charles and Smoove & Turrell. Although the social club looks unassuming from outside, don’t let it fool you, as it has one of the best atmospheres around.
33 Queens Road, LS6 1NY – 0113 2752411, brudenellsocialclub.co.uk
Lastly, we have a place that dedicates its Sundays to blues artists, old and new,The Hop. With experienced musicians taking to the stage, such as Tom Atha, The Turnarounds and Blue Flies, you can be sure that it’ll be a bopping night. And the best part about this place is the breathtaking waterfront view that you can enjoy while relaxing with a drink in your hand.
Neville Street, LS1 4BR – 0113 2439854, thehopleeds.co.uk
Featured Image: mtx / Flickr / CC