Glasgow lives and breathes music 365 days a year, but for this weekend, the city is going to make some unique musical memories when it hosts the BBC6 Music Festival. From Friday 24th to Sunday 26th of March, locals and visitors alike will enjoy shows ranging from Depeche Mode to Limmy, and every conceivable act in between. For some, the range of gigs will lead them into unfamiliar parts of the city. Before a gig you really want to set the tone for the evening, so a bar or restaurant with interesting food, stellar tunes and a bustling vibe is an absolute must. Here’s some Glasgow Living tips on where to go for A Pre-Soirée swally & food…

A ten-minute walk south from the O2 Academy in the Gorbals will lead you to Ranjit’s Kitchen on the edge of Pollockshaws Road/Govanhill. If you’re enjoying the day events at Tramway, it’s even closer! Ranjit’s Kitchen is a real family endeavour with an informal and fun approach. Whatever you do, don’t let anyone in your group be put off by its vegetarian status, the deli-style Panjabi food is not to be missed.

IMAGE: Ranjits Kitchen Facebook (Thali of Aloo Gobi Sabji, Red Lentil Daal, hot fresh Rotis.)

Once you’ve sauntered over the river to Southside, we would also recommend you rocksteady’ right up to The Rum Shack. On arrival after a few ales, and possibly a sneaky Red Leg Rum and a wee hawf of Springbank Whisky (not together of course), the irie vibes are predictibly well under way from the get go. When it comes to sitting down to eat, there is always some fantastic odours coming from the BBQ behind the scenes! The actual menu is 5 star Carnival culture. Go and grab some Jerk chicken, pork and fish hot off the chargrill. Or try some other Caribbean classics like Curry Goat, Stew Chicken and Macaroni Pie, Doubles and Accra.


For the veggie option, on a previous visit Rum Shack offered sweet potato croquettes, served with beetroot risotto and Yard favourite callaloo and fennel. It might have been on the specials board that day, but there’s never any doubt that whatever you choose, you won’t be disappointed.

IMAGE: Rum Shack Facebook

Always remember to leave a minuscule amount of Reggae room for dessert, where once again you will be spoiled for choice. As if you won’t be happy enough with the food, the catering team and customer service is always soulful, warm, joyful, spicy, and diligently attentive throughout!

IMAGE: Rum Shack Facebook

Another addition to the Southside super supper club is  a GlasgowLiving favourite! Agenda 87, tucked away on Kilmarnock Road across from the Shawlands Arcade. Here you can enjoy some delicious pre-party treats ranging from traditional steak pie to a zesty katsu curry, courtesy of their new tasty Asian Fusion street food menu…

IMAGE: Agenda 87 Facebook

O2 Academy song pick…

Prior to the late night sessions at the revered SWG3 venue, some tacos at Finnieston’s Duchess of Argyle would be the perfect pre-game set up. With its no booking policy, discerning musical choices and fast service, it’s a real no-frills gem and only a mere 10-15 minute walk to the warehouse space. Depending, obviously, on how many tacos or tequillas you’ve tackled!

Image: The Duchess of Argyle Facebook

Another hotspot up in “Hipster Heaven (Finnestion)” is the well renowned Park Bar. This is a lively, well-known pub offering ‘gastro’ grub, live music and “great craic.” A little bit of the Highlands in the heart of Glasgow. This wee place will get your toes tappin’ away ahead of the main event!

IMAGE: Park Bar Facebook

SWG3 song pick…

The Barrowlands and St.Luke’s are east end neighbours and, of course, eating at the latter venue is always a good option. (GlasgowLiving pop in weekly, often twice)

IMAGE: St Luke's Facebook
IMAGE: St Luke’s Facebook

Though, for craft beer buddies, heading to the Drygate Brewery to pair some schooners with fine local produce is guaranteed to be the more memorable of choices.

IMAGE: Drygate Facebook

If you’re starting off in the City Centre before heading to the East End, there’s a couple of spots we would highly recommend for some nice nibbles and bubbles before the music takes control. Bar Soba – Merchant City on Albion Street is right up our street. These guys take authentic street food dishes and the finest produce and scratch-make every element in their own kitchen, creating some culinary remixes. We often indulge in some Small Plates, whilst ordering something hot off the woks, and tend to wash it down with a creative cocktail, or three…

IMAGE: Bar Soba – Merchant City Facebook

The Merchant City itself…it’s now renowned as a high spirit for dining, an inspirational magnet with pocketfuls of restaurants and an explosion for varieties of cuisines. However, 30 years on, Cafe Gandolfi is still there and it’s still unique! With its rustic and traditional, yet stylish fittings, chic white-tiled walls and Toscana-esque ambience the café remains up there with the best the city has to offer. Food wise, it’s all about seasonal, local delicacies and traditional favourites– from Cullen skink to haggis, neeps and tatties from Cockburns of Dingwall to smoked venison with gratin dauphinoise from Rannoch Smokery. For anyone fancying a wee pre-soirée swally, the wine list must be one of the longest in town…

Image: Cafe Gandolfi Facebook

St. Luke’s song pick – These Words by The Lemon Twigs.

Barrowlands song pic – Them Changes by Thundercat


6 Ways to Watch and Listen to the 6 Music Festival

If you can’t make it to Glasgow, never fear, there are many ways to watch and listen. Enjoy the very best of the festival across the weekend on your TV, Red Button, computer, mobile or tablet. Experience 3 days of extraordinary live music, interviews, DJ mixes, poetry and comedy from the 6 Music Festival in Glasgow. Check it all out HERE