It’s Our Birthday!

We are one!

Who would have thought it that this little idea that germinated away in Jamie’s brain for so long, would actually work. But, work it has and we have reached that first milestone of 12 months open and have loved every minute of it (apart from the time the plumbing went wrong, or when the water got cut off during a very very busy bank holiday). It has been mental!

So, to celebrate we are having a bit of a weekend of it! We will be having live music from Tamsin Quin, Shaun Buswell (co-creator of the Bateswell Tart) and Jim Blair (who is almost as regular here as we are) on our actual birthday (Thursday 23rd). We follow this up with a bit of a “Super-Sunday” on 26th with the triple whammy of the Old Town Christmas Lights Switch-On, an early DJ set from Harki and the November installment of the frankly lunatic Music Quiz. See the other blogs and our social media for more details on these events, and for anything else we have planned!

So, in a year what have we achieved? Plenty, as it turns out! We have hosted a variety of events from the Swindon Literature Festival and the Old Town Sausage and Ale Trail to a beer school with the guys from West Berkshire Brewery / Renegade as well as a Tap Social Movement Tap Takeover . We will have hosted 17 live music sessions which featured 33 acts plus three sessions of the Swindon Shuffle music festival  that brought in another 14 performances. The Shuffle team have hosted 11 quizzes that have raised hundreds of pounds for charity and we had a Tryanuary promotion at the start of the year.

We also hit the road and went to Craft Beer Rising, The Beavertown Extravaganza and Bristol Craft Beer Festival. All in the name of research of course! Oh and we have had has lots and lots of different beers (over 70 at the last count).

So, thank you for supporting us this year, we couldn’t do it without you. Enjoy the celebrations and we will see you for much much more of this over the next 12 months!


Team Tuppenny

Live Music

Live Music Session #16 – Lisa Richards + Emily-Jane Sheppard

Lisa Richards Oct 17 TuppNovember 9th brings us Session 16, featuring touring Antipodean Lisa Richards, with able support from SoP favourite Emily-Jane Sheppard.

Life in Australia, Austin Texas and New York City have all shaped the sounds and songs of Lisa Richards. With sharp observations, subtle humor and a ferociously sweet voice, she explores the complexities of life through a mongrel mix of folk, blues, roots and jazz……

With a penchant for the underdog and the outsider, she writes and performs songs on guitar in the tradition of solo singers and street performers through the ages. Her guitar playing is sparse, percussive and rhythmic and her songs tell vivid stories of longing, loss, love and hope using a rich palette of musical elements.

Lisa’s songs have appeared on CD’s alongside Adele, Nina Simone and Corinne Bailey Rae as well as being heard in film and television.

Reviewers of her work frequently comment on the unusual qualities of her voice while drawing comparisons to such diverse artists as Billie Holliday, Bjork, Cassandra Wilson, Patty Griffin and Suzanne Vega. Her 4th CD “Mad Mad Love” was downloaded 80,000 times

Lisa’s voice is distinguished by its singularity. Articulated with strength and precision, it can be girlish, tender and innocent as each word is delivered with resonant clarity. Other times it rings with hard-won experience and dark foreshadowing.

Support comes from Emily-Jane Sheppard who effortlessly blends dexterous acoustic guitar work with an outstanding and memorable vocal delivery.

Music from 8.30, entry free.

Live Music

Live Music Session #15 – The Shudders + Scott Freeman

Thursday 26th October brings us Live Music Session #15 which features one of the longest standing local bands. The Shudders are a mainstay of the local scene who have played all over the UK, their sound combining indie, country and rock influences. This will be a full band but stripped back show that we are sure will still be played with all their usual energy. Normally with a Shudders show you get 3 part vocal harmonies, screaming guitar, warm acoustic and a commanding rhythm section as they weave their rich tapestry of noise,  a tapestry which could be described as combining strands of  Neil Young & Crazy Horse, Bright Eyes and Wilco for those weaving enthusiasts out there. But, as this is an acoustic show, I think the emphasis is going to more on the vocal harmonies and warm acoustic guitar to portray the bands heart felt melodies.

The Shudders have shared stages with the likes of Miles Hunt of The Wonder Stuff, Chris Helme of The Seahorses, The Young Republic and Ox and have headlined events like The Radio 1 Big Weekend Fringe Festival and the Swindon Shuffle along with playing in venues across the country such as The Borderline and The Troubadour in London and  The Fleece in Bristol.

Support comes in the fine shape of Scott Freeman, who plays an anthemic indie rock of thrashing acoustic guitar, tasty vocal hooks and wonderfully weird word- smithery.  He has made a name for himself in the Hampshire music scene with powerhouse performances as a solo act and with his infamous backing band, the ‘Tokyo Sex Whales’.

As per usual, music from about 8.30 with free entrance and the tip hat doing the rounds. See you there!

Live Music

Live Music Session #14 – Oli Norman + Luke De-Sciscio

Oli Norman Oct 17 Tupp WEB

On Thursday 12th October our live music session features the return of Oli Norman, who last featured on our stage at the 2017 Shuffle in an excellent but technically cursed set (who seriously breaks 2 strings on their first number? We blame the fact he had shaved his beard off…). Oli plays a wonderful collection of atmospheric, sparse songs with emotion, feeling and intelligence. We just hope he has grown his beard back…

‘Wonderfully confident as well as humorously self-depreciating. The perfect combination’ – The Swindonian

‘Heart that pours from every word’ – The Ocelot

In support we welcome the overdue return to Swindon gigging for Luke De-Sciscio, someone Ed has been putting on for as long as he has been putting on live music.

Luke is a songwriter with a supremely gymnastic vocal style, one for who silence and space in a song are of equal importance to the notes and who likes to follow a process of total immersion in song-writing that allows him to search his soul and find the voice of each piece. The result is always spine-tingling and highly emotive.

This promises to be a very magical show indeed. Free entry as always, but artist tips are hugely appreciated.

Live Music

Live Music Session #13 – Chris Webb

Session 13 promises not to be unlucky, because we are hosting the talents of the wonderful Chris Webb. Bristol based Chris is a solo fingerstyle modern folk singer who plays high-tempo, upbeat original songs.
Fiercely independent he has been releasing albums and gigging under his own name without management since 2011.Chris somehow racks up near a hundred gigs most years and tirelessly releases EPs and albums for his fans – his 5th full length album is about to be released but you can check out his brand new single here or see a video session of it below.
“His upbeat, intricate guitar playing and beautiful lyrics left the crowd mesmerized, creating a rich tapestry of idioms and ideas with powerful, catchy choruses that are reminiscent of early Fleetwood Mac.”

New Brews

Time to get Mild…!

18382706_1636537389722231_1940163154260525056_nMaggs’ Magnificent Mild, our latest new additon to the fridges, is one for the traditionalist beer drinker as well as those crafty folk who like to tip their hat to the old way of doing things. It is also the latest addition to our canon of award winning brews having just landed a silver in the GBBF Champion Beer of Britain Mild Category no less. Full of roast malt flavours coupled with a smooth mouth feel and gentle sweetness it is a silky drink indeed.

The term “mild” originally meant young beer, as opposed to “stale” aged beer with its resulting “tang”. It is a style of beer that originated in Britain in the 17th century or earlier and therefore is one of the oldest styles. It has a predominantly malty palate. Modern mild ales are mainly dark coloured due to the use of well-roasted malts or barley and are less hopped than bitters, often with a chocolatey character with nutty and burnt flavours.  Alcohol by volume (ABV) of 3% to 3.8% are usual, although there are (as always) exceptions!

Once sold in every pub, mild experienced a sharp decline in popularity after the 1960s and was in danger of completely disappearing. However, in recent years the explosion of microbreweries has led to a modest renaissance and an increasing number of milds are now being brewed.

If you prefer a malty taste and not all the explosively hoppy beers around then give this a crack!

West Berkshire Brewery

New Brews

An award winning beery lovechild is here…

We now stock bottles of the super tasty Red Eye Pale Ale, a collaboration brew from our friends at Renegade Brewery and their friends Farmageddon Brewery in Northern Ireland

Packed with Columbus, Galaxy and Centennial hops this hoppy Red IPA begins with big aromas of burnt orange and passion-fruit followed by sweet malt flavours and a dry resinous finish. Full-on with bags of flavour it is unfiltered so has a nice haze on it that gives the red colour a really menacing air.

Red-Eye-2This hook-up began with a bit of a “swipe right” at Craft Beer Rising last year between the intrepid brewers at Renegade, and their counterparts at Farmageddon. After bloodshot eyes met over a “few” pints at the event and a subsequent exchange of hoppy love notes a genuine beery bromance was born. The result of this was a bromantic break at the Farmageddon brewery in Northern Ireland for the Renegade boys that led to this hoppy beast of an IPA love-child. We are told a lot of fun was had and a lot of beer “sampled”.

Amazingly, the Farmageddon crew entered the beer straight into the Belfast Beer Festival, fresh into its kegs, and it only went and won Champion Beer of All Ireland!! Amazing what can happen with a drunken idea at a beer event…

Live Music

Live Music Session #12 – B-Sydes + Neil Morris

B-Sydes Sept 17 Tupp smallAfter the Shuffle excitement and a little summer break from live music over August, we return with a bang on Thursday September 7th with a cracking folk-punk show featuring 2 of the hardest working musicians around.

B-Sydes (AKA Ben Sydes) is a folk-punk singer-songwriter based in Cambridge/ London.  On his travels Ben has been lucky enough to share stages with Frank Turner, Gaz Brookfield, Ferocious Dog, Ben Marwood, Beans On Toast, Dave McPherson, Sam Duckworth, etc

After recording 2 EP’s, ‘Handshakes Turn To Headlocks’ and ‘Wrecked Vessels’, Ben released his debut album, ‘Constant Fictions’, in May 2015 on Aaahh!! Real Records.
|This year has been taken up with work on album number 2 interspersed with some live touring. Ben is no stranger to Swindon, having played a handful of SoP shows already at other venues.

Support Neil Morris was born and raised in the Black Country, started playing bass when he was about 12ish. Formed *Kerz* who would later become HoldUp with a few friends in school in around 1996ish. They gigged a bit and then split up in around 2000. Bored of trying to form new bands and making them tour he switched to acoustic guitar and went solo.

Since going solo he’s toured the UK 9 times and played shows with Carlos and The Jackal, The Dawn Chourus, Oxygen Thief, Ben Marwood, My Name is Ian, Jackrabbit Parole, Adam Boucher, Jim Lockey & The Solemn Sun.

All in all, it should be a fantastic night of music, tempered only by Neils rather unusual sense of bumour! More details and info on the artists can be found on the event page.

Live Music

The Swindon Shuffle

Shuffle 2017 Flyer v1-2We are super excited to be hosting 3 sessions of the brilliant Swindon Shuffle music event this year (it’s 11th!!)

Our amazing headliners will be True StraysDREUW and Ruby Confue and we will also be hosting the talents of: Bradley CowtanEmily-Jane SheppardOli NormanMolevilleGrassGoblinNick FelixCanute’s Plastic Army, The Hall Brothers from Raze-Rebuild and Steve Cox from Mr Love and Justice.

WBB 5 Knuckle 2

It all takes place for us on Thursday 13th July, Saturday 15th July and Sunday 16th July. Full times and details are on the event pages. Entry is free and we will be collecting money for the Shuffle Charity, Swindon Mind. In addition, we will be serving the official Shuffle Ale – 5 Knuckle!


Live Music

LIve Music Session #11 – The August List + Canute’s Plastic Army

The brilliant Oxford duo The August List have long been favorites of Ed’s and he has managed to bag them for a show for us this month –  Thursday 22nd June to be precise, from 8.30pm. It is free entry but as always we encourage artist donations.

Their debut album ‘Oh Hinterland’ still rates as one Ed’s all-time favourite listens, and recently released follow-up ‘Ramshackle Tabernacle’ takes their amazing and unique sonic template and polishes it up, exchanging some of the untamed rawness of the first record for a more controlled approach that is able to be directed more accurately, a musical sniper rifle rather than shotgun.

Musically the husband and wife duo have a beautifully creaky “back porch” style, all analogue and rustic with a real backwoods feeling. Yet, this backwards country music still manages to have startling rock ‘n’ roll attitude as acoustic guitars, kick drums, harmonicas, found instruments and their voices are deployed with verve and passion on songs concerning the frailty of human existence, the awesomeness of nature and other fun things.

The music has a sensitivity and reverence to place and time that somehow makes the songs fit all places and all times with an authenticity in the lyrical aspect of the writing, the words chosen fit the style and feel of the music perfectly. This is analogue music of wood, and strings and breaths of air that is all about simpler days, troubled ages, youth and twilight years; yet it fits into a modern, digital word with barely a murmur. This is music for those who still read books, speak on a telephone and listen to vinyl records without denying the march of progress.

Support comes from the the soaring, passionate vocals and dynamic, intricate acoustic guitar of Canute’s Plastic Army, an acoustic duo who share a love of dark and twisted bluesy folk music.

Event information page | The August List’s Facebook page  | Canute’s Plastic Army’s Facebook Page