Watch: Meet the cat behind Soho's latest jazz club - Alfie's in London

Video: A new jazz venue has opened in Soho, named for a cat who has befriended stars in the area.
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Having made friends with stars including Michael Palin, Stephen Fry, Eddie Izzard and Emma Thompson, a Soho cat has lent his name to the district's latest jazz venue.

Alfie lives at The Piano Bar, in Carlisle Street, but may soon be making an appearance at Alfie's, a new jazz club in Greek Street.

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The man behind both venues, as well as Soho Live Studios and Soho Jazz Festival, is George Hudson.

George, also Alfie’s human, said: “Alfie’s not just any cat, he’s embraced the Soho culture and whenever any of our stars pop by to film or record he can’t help but get involved.

"You can check out some encounters on his Instagram @sohojazzcat. When Stephen Fry was in, he fully understood it was about time he had his own bar. This new club is his legacy, a place where the past and present of jazz collide, and we can't wait to show you what we've got lined up.”

Alfie's boasts a studio grand piano and sound by Roland, and is connected to the Union Club, which has been part of the Soho scene for the last 30 years.

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A launch night on Tuesday featured New Orleans-style street band and Jazz FM's Vocalist of the Year, Cherise, with her take on the classic track Alfie. The song, by Burt Bacharach and Hal David, was the theme to the Michael Caine film of the same name and was a hit for Cilla Black and Dionne Warwick.

The venues' musical director, Nathan Britton, said: "The club is named after the cat, Alfie, who we got during Covid, but it was also based on the 'swinging 1960s' movement, and Michael Caine in the film Alfie. It's trying to keep that energy of heavy swing and jazz and blues - and to revive it.

"It's an old Soho townhouse so there's a lovely energy in the room. The stage was built by our musicians, and with the lighting it's got this lovely Art Deco design and feel."

Alfie's is a new jazz club in Soho's Greek Street.Alfie's is a new jazz club in Soho's Greek Street.
Alfie's is a new jazz club in Soho's Greek Street.
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Duty manager Justine Mourot said: "It's got a very nice mix between the young generation of new artists, of people bringing something new to the scene - and in an old setting that's been part of Soho history."

Nathan said the Soho jazz scene has always been vibrant.

"It was the first place where jazz was imported to the UK but it seems to be having a resurgence," he said. "We're trying to hold the torch and keep it going for the next generation. All our team are fairly young - I'm getting a few greys now, though. But we're quite a young team and we want to keep this energy and keep live music alive in Soho."

Visiting Alfie's - tickets

Alfie’s can be found on the first floor at 49 Greek Street.

Ticket information is available at the Alfie's website, with membership available for £35 for the year.

Programme highlights include the weekly Alfie’s Jazz Jam, a showcase of emerging talents and established stars, and The Night Train, a late-night cocktail and music affair each weekend.

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