Camden Town, oh the joys of the bustling place that is Camden Town. For those who do not know, Camden Town is located in the borough of Camden in North London.
Camden Town has long been known as a place where everyone is a lot more liberal and anything goes - within reason, of course. Since the 1960s Camden Town has become a hub for the alternative, punk and Goth music scenes through its famous theatre called "The Roundhouse."
Another claim to fame is the wonderful and vibrant Camden Market that is a hive of activity throughout the day and night, with stalls selling anything from fashion clothes to simple bric a brac. Many tourists can be found wandering through these colourful stalls looking for an interesting item at bargain prices.
Just outside the market you can also find many wannabe acts dressed in all manner of dress, from suits and tie to colourful punk clothing. These wannabe acts all wait for their turn to try and wow the crowds by busking through a wonderful display of skills, from music to dancing and acrobatics to poetry reading. After each act the people will go round with a hat looking for a few pennies or pounds as payment for their display.
If the market is not quite your style, then why not try out the Camden Catacombs, which are a winding system of underground tunnels. These eerie tunnels were dug under the town between 1800 and 1900 to serve as stables for horses and ponies that were used to work on the railways. There is also an underground pool in the Catacombs that once served as a place to park narrow boats that traveled along the Regents Canal.
In Camden Town you will also find an amazing number of restaurants catering to everyone's needs. As the song says, there is "A string of Irish pubs as far as you can see, Greek, Indian, Chinese, or would you like a cup of tea, There's Tapas, fracas, alcohol, tobaccos". So if you are thinking of visiting Camden, be sure your taste buds are ready to enjoy the fare on offer.
A little further into Camden Town there are even many more places of interest to visit such as the Jewish Museum, London Zoo, Regents Park and Camden Lock.
So why did Suggs write about Camden Town?
In 1995 Suggs took it upon himself to write the song entitled "Camden Town" for his album entitled Lone Ranger. Having been on the London scene for many years, Suggs (real name Graham McPherson) found his home with friends at the Dublin Castle. For the uninitiated, the Dublin Castle is an old and now famous London public house (old English pub) situated in the heart of Camden Town.
From the Dublin Place, a place where Suggs enjoyed his fun times with friends, a love for Camden was born which caused him to pen the lyrics to the song "Camden Town." The song seemed to also strike a chord with many revelers on the music scene who also have a love for Camden Town, as the song climbed to #14 in the United Kingdom singles music charts.
McPherson's childhood was quite dicey, owing to a mother who abandoned him for long periods of time (years) and a father who abandoned him for his entire life. He admits to having been in and out of therapy over the years to learn to accept everything that's gone on. Deborah Ross asked him in a 1997 interview if he ever remembered receiving affection during his early life. His response was, "Well, whenever I ran away the people who brought me straight back always seemed very nice."
Album : The Lone Ranger Released : 1995 UK chart position : 14