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Showing posts from January, 2016

Kilburn National Club

This popular music venue was at 234 Kilburn High Road, on the corner of Messina Avenue. Many famous musicians including Johnny Cash and David Bowie played there. We look at the original building which was the Grange Cinema, and what happened when the National closed and was taken over by two different church groups. Grange Cinema The Grange was a large mansion standing in grounds of nine and a half acres and with a frontage to Kilburn High Road. It was the home of Ada Peters the widow of a wealthy coach builder who made coaches for Queen Victoria . Following Ada ’s death in 1910, the property was sold. The new owner was Oswald Stoll, a major name in the entertainment world who had already built the London Coliseum in St Martin ’s Lane, near Leicester Square . Stoll wanted to erect another Coliseum theatre in Kilburn. In fact, progress overtook him and instead of a theatre, the 2,028 seat Grange cinema opened on 30 July 1914 . This remained the biggest cinema in Kilburn until th

I Remember the Night Jerry Lee Lewis Played at the Kilburn State

Rock and Roll legend Jerry Lee Lewis was born into a poor family in Ferriday Louisiana in 1935. His musical talent was obvious from an early age and his parents mortgaged their house to buy him a piano. His mother enrolled him in the Southwest Bible Institute in Waxahachie, Texas , so that he would sing evangelical songs. But Lewis daringly played a boogie woogie rendition of ‘My God Is Real’ at a church assembly. The next morning, the Dean of the School called Lewis into his office to expel him.  Years later Lewis was asked, ‘Are you still playing the devil’s music?’ He said, ‘Yes, I am. But you know it’s strange, the same music that they kicked me out of school for is the same kind of music they play in their churches today. The difference is, I know I am playing for the devil and they don’t’. Jerry became known as ‘The Killer’ from a school nickname and as ‘the ‘wild man of rock’ from his high-energy performances of piano playing and singing. In 1956 he went to Sam Phi