JON ALLEN at Colston Hall / The Lantern Thu 10 May 2018 from 7pm



Thurs 10th May 2018

14+ show

Tickets £15adv

Doors 7pm support 7.30pm tbc

Artists Website

Born in Winchester, but having spent most of his life in Devon, Jon knew from an early age that music was his vocation. He grew up admiring artists as wide-ranging as Tom Waits, Led Zeppelin, James Taylor and the Beatles. Allen sees himself as an artist with a truly sustainable long-term career, with no interest in selling out for a quick buck. Instead, he’s already carving out a profession in honest and genuine songwriting.

Jon attended an alternative progressive school called Sands and would be the first to admit that he spent most of his time jamming on his drumkit and teaching himself guitar, rather than attending lessons. This led to him featuring in a number of school bands, playing drums. As he puts it: “As a teenager, no one ever wanted to be the front man, because it was too embarrassing”. But on one occasion, as a joke, Jon got up and started messing around on the microphone, Jon realised that he was a natural show off. Soon after unveiling his singing ability in public, Allen traded in his computer, bought an electric guitar and 15-watt amp, and so his musical path began. When he was 16, Jon’s parents got him a four-track recorder, and there was no looking back. 

He began laying down tracks and experimenting with the interaction of different instruments, exploring the multi-track recording process. Jon Attended college completing a BTEC in performing arts, and then applied and got a place at the Liverpool Institute of Performing Arts (LIPA), founded by Sir Paul McCartney, on a songwriting course. This taught Jon how to become a more self-disciplined writer. 

After graduating from LIPA, Jon moved down to London, after one of his demos received a five-star review in the magazine Making Music. Management offers in London soon followed, prompting Jon to immerse himself in the live music scene and surround himself with likeminded people. 

It was through spending five years in the trenches of the intensive London gig circuit that Jon met his band mates, starting with Hammond player Rich Milner, who Allen had admired at a gig at the Bedford in south London. Jon gave Rich his number and it wasn’t long before he became part of his band. Drummer Tim Bye also arrived via the recommendation of another musician at the Bedford, and after watching him jam, Jon knew he would be another great acquisition. Guitarist Pat West came from a tour that Jon had recently done with Kate Walsh. Musically, they clicked so well that it didn’t take long for him to become part of Jon’s team. Lastly, a key figure in creating the album is bass player Tristan Longworth, a childhood friend of Rich who produced “Dead Man’s Suit”, recorded in Tristan’s house in Balham.

In Jon’s own words, “my inspiration for creating ‘Dead Man’s Suit’ was simply because I love making music. For me it’s escapism and connection at the same time. Love, death and sex all feature somewhere in the album.”

Since moving to London, Allen has found himself sharing the stage with such internationally- esteemed artists as Emmylou Harris, Mark Knopfler, KT Tunstall and Jose Gonzalez, and playing in some of the world’s top venues, such as Wembley Arena, Manchester MEN and the Zenith in Paris.

After selling more than 20,000 downloads via his website of the track “Going Home”, when it featured on a Land Rover commercial, Jon is steadily building up a strong and supportive fanbase in the UK. He’s gained extensive support from Radio 2, with “In Your Light” achieving a much-coveted A-List slot. The debut album “Dead Mans Suit” reveals a timeless collection of beautifully-crafted songs and the emergence of an important new English talen

Tickets: £16.50  


The Colston Hall opened to the public in 1867 and has not just been a part of the music scene but a significant landmark in the history of Bristol itself. Having survived two devastating fires, the hall has had quite a few aesthetic makeovers. The most recent has seen a complete overhaul of the main entrance, turning it into more of a multimedia centre. It now has a modern bar, big screen televisions showing some sporting fixtures, and a light and airy reception area with comfortable seating. The venue itself is constructed like a traditional music hall. At the front there is a huge stage which can be altered for different types of events (up until 2003 they used hold wrestling matches here). The rest is tiered with removable seats at the front for general admission shows and an extensive balcony. it has a maximum capacity of around 2000.

Acts that have played here include; Beatles, Jimi Hendrix, The Stones, David Bowie, Elton John, Thin Lizzy, Roxy Music, Bob Marley, Lou Reed, Bournemouth Symphony Orchestra, Philharmonia Orchestra and Halle Orchestra. My personal favourite however was PJ & Duncan.

Situated in the oldest part of the building, The Lantern was built in 1873 and offers a programme of world, folk, jazz, acoustic and new classical music in a quirky and intimate space. In former times the venue was a theatre, and staged performances by Bristol Old Vic Theatre School alumni including Patrick Stewart and Daniel Day Lewis. The maximum capacity for this venue is 350 standing and 250 seated.

Address: Colston Hall, Colston Street, Bristol BS1 5AR * Click on the address to launch google maps.