Sea shanty singers have a new home

9/11/13- Herring Fair, Hastings. ENGSUS00120131011134416
9/11/13- Herring Fair, Hastings. ENGSUS00120131011134416

After five years at the Stag pub in the Old Town the popular weekly sea shanty singing session has found a new berth a few streets away at the Jenny Lind.

Hastings has always been a strong base for traditional song but the passion for singing shanties and sea songs was ignited by Tom Kelly when he came to the town.

The town now has two shanty singing groups who have performed at events and festivals locally and across the UK.

There is the RX Shanty group and the Hastings Shanty Crew. Both sang for big audiences and the recent Hastings Herring Fair.

The owners of the Jenny Lind, KC and Linda, said: “The trial sessions held in October were a great success and we are really pleased that the shanty singers have accepted our offer to make the Jenny their new home.

“We are a community pub at the heart of the Old Town and aim to please the fans of all musical genres.

“We feel that the convivial atmosphere and the quality singing at the shanty sessions is a welcome addition to the range of good music already available at the Jenny”.

Tom Kelly, who organises the sessions, said: “The singers, and our regular audience, appreciate the warm welcome received at the Jenny and look forward to our new berth bringing shanties and sea songs to a wider audience”.

Shanties were work songs sung by sailors to make hard and laborious tasks easier to get through.

The sessions at the Jenny Lind, in High Street, are free and are open to all to join in, lead a song or simply listen. Chorus sheets are available at the sessions for those who don’t know the songs but want to join in.

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