Held on the 2nd and 4th Fridays of the month at Earls Barton Working Men's Club in Northants, a typical Kontra evening will showcase three varied, top quality acoustic roots acts who play for 45 minutes each approx. The club starts at 8pm and runs through till 11pm, and though it is non-profit making we do charge a token £3 admission to cover costs and welcome voluntary donations. Our Earls Barton venue is ideal for acoustic music: characterful and friendly (it also serves real ale) and can be found at 1 Queen Street, Earls Barton, Northants, NN6 0LN. Further info and history below.


From humble beginnings in 2004 as an open mic at a Northamptonshire village pub, Kontra gradually evolved through several changes of venue and format, all the while building a reputation for presenting entertaining and eclectic evenings of quality acoustic music. It is now acknowledged as not only Northamptonshire's premier acoustic roots club, but one of the most popular and respected clubs of its kind in the UK, attracting some of the best up and coming acoustic talent from across the country, as well as more established performers from home and abroad. With an open music policy that welcomes all genres of acoustic roots music as long as it is of outstanding quality, Kontra is a rare success story in these difficult economic times. Run as a non-profit making enterprise, admission to the club is just a token £3, and the acts, often professional musicians, play for expenses only. That they do so is testament to the excellent reputation the club has built up over the years, with its friendly atmosphere, large, loyal, and enthusiastic audiences, excellent sound (courtesy of Geoff Bland), and the imaginative programming of organiser, Kev Buxton. Priding itself on the fact that it sets no musical boundaries other than quality, a typical Kontra session crosses many genres within the space of a single evening: folk, blues, Americana, jazz, world, contemporary and traditional music all find a welcome reception on the Kontra stage.

Next meeting FRIDAY 13th DECEMBER CHRISTMAS SPECIAL with guests Cordwainers / Sara Ashley / Whale / Matt Carter



George Breakfast

Soloman Smith Trio

Annie Dressner


The Boxwood Chessmen

Kete Bowers

Tu-kay & Ryan


The Schlagerlouts

Burning Salt

Daryl Kirkland



RECENT PHOTOS (click to expand)



  As has become our tradition in recent years, the Christmas Special features a couple of local acts who have really excelled over the last 12 months, and this year we’re delighted to welcome back that very fine singer-songwriter MATT CARTER along with the increasingly assured WHALE, both of whom have gone from strength to strength in 2019. We’re also thrilled to have with us for the Xmas Special a wonderful new talent from Cambridge, SARA ASHLEY, who writes some of the catchiest, most accessible country songs I’ve heard in a long time. Plus we will of course be winding up the show as always with Earls Barton’s own barnstorming folk band, CORDWAINERS, playing us into Christmas with style and a few seasonal chestnuts!




Kontra Roots Promotions