Bands, Clubs,Restaurants, Cultural Societies, Food and Drink

Bands in Edinburgh

Records are all very well, but live music is where it is at! Here are some of the local and visiting bands.

Edinburgh School of Samba

Edinburgh's very own Samba School. Choose the link to find out more. Contact : 0966 462 159. Scotland actually has a proliferation of samba and brazilian inspired groups now. Try:


a samba-punk band with a new record deal and a CD released (12/1999)and MacUmba a Bagpipe and samba band with an album out too.

Salsa Celtica

Great 8 (at least) piece band of local musicians playing a good mix of latin standards - mixing many styles with some good arrangements - great fun to listen to and and to dance. They are playing regularly around town, andhave become an established part of the the Scottish music scene. In 1997 they recorded a single featured on the Scottish jazz compilation 'From Bebop to Hip Hop'. An Album, Monstruos y Demonios, Angels and Lovers has been recorded and is available on Eclectic Records (ECL CD 9717) on sale at gigs and other outlets and A new Album should be out in 2000. Salsa Celtica are helping to bring salsa to a wider audience with their ever more exciting gigs.. They frequently play with Carlos Peña, Edinburgh's resident Venezuelan singer. For info phone Steve on 346 4088 They have a WEBSITE

Carlos Peña's Hot Charanga Sauce

Regular Edinburgh salsa singer and his current band. Play in Henry's Cellar Bar

Rumba Caliente

Toby Shippey's latin jazz oufit

Sexteto Caliente

featuring Lino Rocha and members of Salsa Celtica play mix of latin music

El Tigre

New Son band (play at El Barrio Monthly)

El Cometta All Stars

Jazz band with strong latin (salsa rather than bossa) and funk influences. to be seen at Club Latino, Henry's Cellar, Graffiti, Big Beat etc.


Salsa band run by Coco.

Carlos Arredondo Ortiz

- 0131 556 6086 Chilean guitarist, composer and font of knowledge on latin american culture!

Convite, "Convite are Neil Wardenand Derek Lithgow who hail from Edinburgh. Both are accomplished soloists in their own right, the two combine to form a highly innovative and versatile guitar duo whose repertoire includes compositions from Antonio Carlos Jobim, Paco de Lucia George Benson, Miles Davis, Django Rheinhardt and many more. Convite are occasionally joined by Latin percussion virtuoso John Topin."

Picante is a 'latin jazz' style band, i.e. playing lots of bosa nova style. They can be heard around town, including Fat Sam's Diner once a week.

Edinburgh University Jazz Orchestra

The Big Bang Big Band

Two Jazz Big Bands with lots of Latin sounds.


- Regular visitors to the Fringe, this group tours the world playing music from Peru


Venues and Clubs

Salsa Viva

Salsa Viva run by Jorge is in 2 main venues and often in others.

1. Currently not running a regular club

2.Thursday Nights in Baracoa

For more info mail Jorge . or phone 0370541564 " With DJ Coco, a member of band APU and now Uchukutá.

Mi Salsa,

A favouite club with DJ Freddy takes place in the' Studio 24' on Carlton Rd. Fridays third weekend of month 8-3am . Phone 552 7624 for info. FAMILIES WELCOME

El Barrio, 104 Westport, Edinburgh Tel. 0131 229 8805 (website here)

New Cafe-bar run by Héctor dedicated to latino-carribean culture and music. Brand new dance floor and music system, Runs classes Mondays, Tuesdays Wednesdays aThursday and Sunday, and includes live music and workshops in dancing.

The programme currently is

Monday 8pm - 1am Olé! An Hispanic night of flamenco, sevillanas, and rumba

Wednesday 10pm - 1am SABROSO! salsa night (preceded by classes), with DJ Nano.

Thursday 8pm - 1am  Salsa and other music night

Friday 8pm - 1am  SABROSO! A hot-blooded salsa night with DJ Nano.

Saturday 8pm - 1am  LATINO LOCO! A top selection of Latin, Hispanic, Afro Caribbean and tropical dance grooves from the past and present.

Contact Hector on [email protected],. He has a mailing list for his club.

Club Latino

- now run by Simon Hodges, at the Bongo Club. For great cuban sounds and live music once a month 2nd friday of the month Supports local and visiting musicians and performers.

Salsa Connections at the Mambo Club,

Tollcross. The Mambo club has a new salsa club on Saturday nights called 'Latin Explosion', run by salsaconnections. Hosts the Uk salsa heats, and visiting teachers doing classes and shows.

Also the old Mambo club with African, Reggae and Latin every Friday night. Two floors, bottom floor is a mix of African and Latin Music, the top floor is Reggae. Normally pretty full and sweaty. Not to everyone's taste ( i.e. serious pick-up joint), but certainly a wide range of peop.e


Regular monthly club playing a mix of latin, carribe and African music, at the Bongo Club £5. 11-3am including dance class 9:30-10:30. Thai and African food available. DJ Zuppe Inglese aka Brian. Arakataca are also in El Barrio on Fridays, and in Birmingham. E-mail <[email protected]>. Next dates:2nd Feb, 2nd & 30th March, 27th April, 25th May, 22nd June.


One of the fulltime latin bars with a dance floor. A'cuban' style bar at 7 Victoria Street. Baracoa has salsa most nights, mixed with other african, latin and carribean music. A number of teachers run classes here too in Salsa, Rueda (Mondays), cuban salsa and Son and Tango (Sundays)

Salsa Con Sabor. Hector of El Barrio's club name. No longer running anything much as far as I know.

Cuba Norte

A resturant/bar with a dance space downstairs, has a daily evening diet of good 'cuban-style' food, salsa lessons, visiting DJ playing salsa, samba and UK music. The dance floor is old shaped, and has a tree in the middle that is only good for hanging coats on! Salsa lessons on Monday, Tuesday and Thursday and Sunday mostly with Orlando. 192 Morrison Street. 0131 221 0499.

Fiesta Latina

Run by the EU Hispanic Society and Anna Taylor. In Teviot Row Student Association building. Saturdays twice monthly in term time. Popular Latin and some traditional mexican and spanish music. Includes guest dancers on occasion. DJ Ana Taylor plays a good mix of music, although rather to the merengue house music end of the spectrum. Huge crowds. Largest sprung dance floor in Scotland. Usual details: 9:30-2am, Last admission midnight. Class with Salsa Angels 9:30. 4.5 pounds on the door, 23.50 stundents, 2:50 for EUHS members. Call Myrna 441 2841 or Enrique 662 4779 for more details. Dates for 2000/2001 Sat 14th October, Sat 4th November, Sat 2nd December, Sat 13th January, Sat 10th February, Sat 17th March, Sat 5th May, Sat 26th May, Sat 23rd June. Look at Anna's great new web pages

Siglo - a new (12/99) bar/resturant with a latin theme. Had a salsa night with classes on tuesday nights 8-9, 9:30-10.30 for £5 including tapas and a beer. Other nightsare more mainstream, but there may be salsa on Sundays. There is no dance floor as such, just lots of spaces around the tables. High ceiling, modern design, could be a nice place... we shall see. 184 The Cowgate 0131 240 2850, [email protected] the web page is not active yet:


The Bongo Club, a small venue at 14 New Street off the Canongate is a world music club that now hosts three latin clubs, Club Latino, Mi Salsa and Arakataca. It has a separate bar, which is good for a some chat occasionally. Nice friendly atmosphere.Also Tango upstairs tuesday 7-9

El Barrio, Latin cafe-bar with dance floor, 104 Westoport, in the old punk venue The Tap. Run by Héctor. Runs classes, salsa nights and puts on live music.

La Belle Angele, Hasties Close, Cowgate used to be for Club Latino , andSalsa Viva. Occasionally has events and other clubs

Cuba Norte aresturant/bar with a dance space downstairs, has DJs from other clubs playing most nights. It is a great venue, with 2 bars, food, and great atmosphere. After some problems with the noise and neighbours the ents programme may be changed.

Cellar Bar On Chambers Street, another music bar and resturant with bands most nights. Free. Salsa on Wednesdays with DJ Enrique. Space to dance but not much. Good bar to go any day of the week to chat and meet friends.

Baracoa a 'cuban' style bar at 7 Victoria Street.Salsa every night, including classes. Tango on Sunday afternoon/Evening

Bar Habana New Bar on the top of Leith Walk. Slight attempt to be 'latin', but has Carlos Arredondo on Sunday afternoons.

Caffe Sardi, Forrest Rd. Italian resturant ysed to have salsa. No more.

Cafe Graffiti great venue, with lots of different music. Occasionally live salsa, often latin tunes in Lizzard Lounge club. THIS HAS CLOSED DOWN IN THE OLD VENUE BUT APPEARS IN NEW VENUES SOMETIMES.

Teviot Row, Bristo Sq, for Fiesta Latina by the EU Hispanic Society and Ana Taylor on Saturdays twice monthly. Popular Latin and some traditional mexican and spanish music. Includes guest dancers on occasion. DJ Ana Taylor plays a good mix of music, although rather to the mernegue house music end of the spectrum. Largest sprung dance floor in Scotland. Usual details: 9:30-1:30pm, Last admission midnight. 2.5 pounds on the door, 2 in advance, 1:50 for EUHS members Ring AZTECA 226 6695 for more details.

Caffe Sardi, Forest Rd , A nice Italian Resturant once had salsa!.

Henry's Bar Kulu's jazz club, down on Morrison Street, opposite the ABC. Has regular jazz and special guests. Salsa Celtica and El Cometa 10 play sometimes. This is the hottest jazz venue in Edinburgh with everything from Salsa to free improvs, and dim sum

The Pleasance Cabaret Bar, The Pleasance ( underneath the theatre in the students association building) - Concerts and Dance.

Assembly Rooms, 54 George St. - Local and Visiting Bands. Hosts Club Latino during the Fringe. This year the World Music series features some excellent African bands - see the Assembly direct programme for details ( I think it can be found through the Scotland Jazz and Blues online page). In February they host the Latin Carnival. Ring 0131 220 4349 for tickets

'The Basement', Broughton Street (near the top of Leith Walk),

Negociants Basement Bar Not much here at the moment, although a much better place downstairs now it has been enlarged.

Bistro Bar William's Street, West End. Pub with Flamenco and some Latin on Monday nights. I hear it has changed hands and is not so good now.











Food and Drink

Please send me more details of resturants, deli's etc. I don't endorse any of these places - but if you go and have a comment I would like to include them. A star * indicates I have been there.


Cuba Norte**
New 'Cuban style' resturant and bar with dance floor and live music. Morrision street, near the conference centre (EICC). Good food, at reasonable prices, busy at the weekend, live music, and latin DJs until 1am. Come hear to dance Salsa and Tango, and meet people.
A very good tapas bar on Jeffery St just off the Royal Mile. Owned by the Ingnacio from Iggs next door. they share the same kitchen. Open Late.
The up market spanish resto next door
Viva Mexico
Good Mexican Cuisine, 41 Cockburn st, 226 5145, or 50 East Fountainbridge 228 4005
New cuban style bar on Victoria street. Not such cuban food. Great place for dancing though.
El Barrio*
Latin Theme Bar with a limited selection of food to keep you dancing all evening
Brazilian Sensation
New Brazilian takeaway on Buccleuch St. open all day for tasty brazilian snacks. Takeout eat in or catering.
Bistro Bar*
Williams Street, (West End).Was a good spanish resturant called the Parador downstairs - Apparently still is good, depending on the chef! But Pepe has sold it, as he sold his last resturant, Gran Via.
The Tapas Tree*
Spanish Style resturant, one in the New Town, and a new one in Forrest Rd. OK, but not great food. Spanish staff, scottish cook! No salt. Nice atmosphere though.
Pepitos Mexican
24a Stafford Street EH3. 225 9575
Pancho Villa's Resturant*
Mexican. Canongate 557 4416
Los Amigos
Buccleugh Street.
Miro Cantina Mexicana*
184 Rose St. 225 4376
El Mexicano
Deli, 51 Muirhouse Gardens EH4 538 7225
Lupe Pintos **
Spanish/ Mexican and American, Italian and Spanish deli. Tollcross.


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