Ask 28-year-old Jocelyn Tan of PB & J what song best encapsulates London, and her answer is a rather nostalgic one: The Kinks’ 1967 hit ‘Waterloo Sunset‘, a quintessential representation of the city in the swinging ’60s. Folk rock may seem slightly off-brand for someone whose musical roots lie in traditional Chinese music, but her choice of this ’60s hit isn’t entirely without reason.
“There’s this understanding that everyone’s on their own journey, with their own destination. But at the same time, the city can be incredibly lonely and alienating,” explains Tan, who has been based in the city since 2021. She recently graduated from Goldsmith’s MA Music (Audiovisual Culture) programme and also got to produce the theme music for The Economist’s new weekly podcast on China, Drum Tower.
Jocelyn Tan of PB & J, mixes elements of traditional Chinese music with a more modern sound.
If anything, London’s many layers only deepen Tan’s love for the city, which nurtured her academic and creative ambitions all at once. It’s also why she chose to continue her journey as a creative in London, seizing the myriad of creative opportunities in the Big Smoke while she can. Ahead, Tan recommends her go-to places in London.