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Whale and Ale

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327 W. 7th St. Los Angeles, CA 90731 310-832-0363
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Best Sea Chantey Sing-along, May 2007

The oak-and-brass drinkery the  Whale and Ale  in San Pedro hosts monthly gatherings where singers and musicians come toting pennywhistles, a concertina, a harmonica, even an 1888 banjo. Tunes like “Blow the Man Down” and “Haul Away, Joe” stem from a tradition of work songs popularized by sailors and dockworkers of the 19th century. “There are some bawdy verses,” says de facto sing-along leader Alan Rice, “but I was trained on a family ship.” Scholars and nautical buffs, some dressed in stripes, suspenders, and wool overcoats, share song sheets over pints of dark beer and bowls of English stew. 

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Music Venues, Bars, British, Pub Food