Jazz in a Club Atmosphere

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Upcoming Gigs

  • 2014-12-13 19:45:00

    The Jonathan Silk Big Band

    13 December 2014 19:45

    As both a drummer and a dedicated specialist in the art of contemporary big band jazz, Glasgow born Jonathon Silk has become one of the busiest young musicians around.  Emerging out of the National Youth Jazz Orchestra of Scotland into the Conservatoire Jazz Course, to receiving the BBC Performing Arts fellowship to develop his own big band, Jon has come full circle. He is now Young Scottish Jazz Musician of the Year 2014 and the band played this years Manchester Jazz Festival. Too numerous to name them all but jazz fans in Birmingham and beyond will recognise many of these excellent young players.

     

    With Christmas just around the corner, expect an evening of contemporary jazz played with a seasonal feel to it. Full of verve and vim, playing every tune with an exuberance not seen since the heady days of Loose Tubes, this is how big bands should play – with superb craft but fun and enjoyable.

     

    two clips of the band:

    playing "Fragment"  in Manchester https://www.facebook.com/#!/jonathan.silk.9?fref=ts

     and "NT2" at the CBSO in March http://jonathansilk.co.uk/jazz/jonathan-silk-big-band-nt2/

     £12 / Members £10    

     

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  • 2014-11-28 19:45:00

    Preston/Glasgow/Lowe

    28 November 2014 19:45

    Birmingham Jazz proudly welcomes the return of this exceptional Jazz trio from London. Formed in 2011, Preston-Glasgow-Lowe is a new dynamic group consisting of three of Jazz's most creative young instrumentalists. In the whirligig world of London's music scene there must be thousands of talented idealistic players looking for other people to realise their projects. Now and again the chemistry works and something original and impressive happens, as in the case of Preston – Glasgow – Lowe (aka David – Kevin – Laurie to their friends).

     

    The three young jazz adventurers hooked up while each was busily making their name working with increasingly prestigious jazz names from the UK and beyond. Their shared interest in improvised music rooted in longer compositions brought them together  and their initially casual get-togethers soon made it clear that a Guitar – Bass – Drums trio was very much on the cards. Each is a technically fearsome player and there's always something to hook onto, whether David Preston's drifting harmonic invention on guitar, Kevin Glasgow's seething work on six-string bass guitar or the barely-repressed seismic undertow of Laurie Lowe's drumming. The resulting pieces show just what good things can happen when the right people get together.

     

    Sharing on-stage credentials with esteemed musicians such as John Scofield, the Foreign Exchange, Melody Gardot, Robert Mitchell and Tommy Smith, they bring a unique and seasoned sound derived from their work as side-men combined with their shared love of improvisation, intricate composition, rhythm, and accessible melodies. Aiming to expand upon the format of the guitar trio they combine their virtuosic skills as soloists and accompanists with extensive composition and elaborate arrangements.

     

    David Preston is involved in many diverse projects including leading the group Meridian with Empirical drummer Shane Forbes, recording a quartet EP of his own original compositions featuring Ernesto Simpson, Brandon Allen & Tom Farmer, MD to Ian Shaw, and writing with Melody Gardot earlier in 2012.

     

    Kevin Glasgow plays bass and guitar in a number of projects, including Tommy Smith’s Karma, the Seb Pipe's Life Experience, the Nicolas Meier Trio, the Bill Mudge Trio and the Alex Hutchings Band.

     

    Laurie Lowe has play with some of the top Jazz musicians in the country, such as Gilad Atzmon, Nicolas Meier, Jim Mullen, Tony Kofi, Dave O’Higgins, Andy Sheppard, Mike Mondesir, Robert Mitchell, Zhenya Strigalev and Carl Orr. He's has also toured with the Grammy Nominated American Hip Hop/R&B group The Foreign Exchange, receiving widespread critical acclaim, and is involved in various projects including Robert Mitchell's 'Panacea' and funk/fusion group Groove Razors.

     

    see them on you tube: https://www.youtube.com/user/prestonglasgowlowe

    or in the studio at BBC Radio Scotland: http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p01l6s5b

     

    £12 / Members £10 Students £5

     

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  • 2014-11-21 19:45:00

    Walsall Jazz Orchestra

    21 November 2014 19:45

    The Walsall Jazz Orchestra is a 19 piece big band which, unlike the vast majority of such bands, plays contemporary, rather than traditional  music. They feature well known composers such as Pat Metheny, Mike Gibbs and Chick Corea, as well as a number of original compositions.

    In 1975, John Hughes formed the Walsall Youth Jazz Orchestra (WYJO) which rapidly became one of the UK's leading youth bands, the Arguelles brothers, Martin Shaw, Richard Iles, Nick Purnell, Duncan Mackay and Pete Cater were among the fine musicians who passed through its ranks.

     

    In 1994 Walsall Jazz Orchestra was formed around a nucleus of former WYJO players. Since then the orchestra has produced three critically acclaimed recordings "Watershed"," Devil in the Detail " and "Little Steps" and has performed throughout the UK and abroad, including the Montreux Jazz Festival and the Royal Festival Hall.

     

    The current Orchestra continues to play adventurous contemporary jazz composition by the likes of Chick Corea and Pat Metheny plus original pieces by members of the band. Its aim is to perform large jazz ensemble music which does not sacrifice the looseness of a small jazz group.

     

     "...the hard core WJOers keep doing the day jobs and relieve those post-work tensions by blasting out the joyous sounds of Jaco Pastorius, or Pat Metheny, or their own Tim Amann.

    They’ve played in hotel bars, in tents in provincial city parks, at beer festivals, and on at least two occasions they have played at the Montreux Jazz Festival.

    When that little funky electric piano figure from Tim Amann starts, Carl Hemmingsley adds the rim shot, Adam Gilchrist the bass line and the horns gently add a quiet pulse before the saxophones top it with the curling melody and Richard Sandford launches into his distortion-laden guitar solo, then I have no choice but to grin.

    This is Amann’s Little Steps, one of their great showpieces, which really should be available on prescription from the NHS. It’ll cure most things.

    The other thing I love about WJO is that it breaks strongly with the tradition for big bands to be all-male affairs. And, no, the good women of the band are not restricted to the genteel occupations of playing the piano and singing – they blow, and, my, how they blow!"

     

    Birmingham Post

     

     

     a clip from an earlier gig can be seen here:  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JeQXUQDk-kw

     

     £5/ Members Free

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  • 2014-11-14 19:45:00

    Sirkis/Bialas International Quartet

    14 November 2014 19:45

    The Sirkis/Bialas International Quartet is a fresh new collaboration between Israeli UK-resident drummer/composer Asaf Sirkis, known for his work with the Lighthouse Trio (ACT), Gilad Atzmon, Tim Garland, Larry Corryel, John Abercrombie & the Asaf Sirkis trio, and Polish vocalist/composer extraordinaire Sylwia Bialas (Germany-resident), with USA resident bassist and harmonica player Patrick Bettison, and the acclaimed Frank Harrison on piano and keyboards (UK). The quartet has recently been touring the UK and recording their new album 'Dreams Dreams'.

     

    With an emphasis on band interaction and sheer joy of playing, they encompass various influences such as contemporary classical music, Polish folk, South Indian & Middle Eastern music as well as a wide range of dynamics – from the most delicate ballad all the way to high-energy electric virtuoso lines and everything in between.

     

    Expect soulful melodies, aerospheric sounds with strong grooves, a full colour electroacoustic jazz with an ethnic touch and some uncommonly used instruments and sound effects.

    listen to the quartet here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wo3kMnxwjVw

     

    The album will be officially released in November 2014.

     

    £12 / Members £10 Students £5

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  • 2014-11-07 19:45:00

    Sean Gibbs Quintet

    7 November 2014 19:45

    The Sean Gibbs Quintet features Sean Gibbs (trumpet), Dan Bayliss (alto sax), Dave Ferris (piano), James Banner (bass) and Jonathan Silk (drums). The band formed in 2012 and has played numerous high profile gigs, including appearances at the Edinburgh Jazz Festival and Birmingham's Beat City Jazz Festival. The repertoire consists of original compositions of Sean's, which have a contemporary jazz aesthetic but retain a hard swinging groove of yesteryear. This leads to inspired improvisations full of passion, excitement and drive.

    "I am a young trumpet player from Edinburgh who strives to make music which appeals to both the head and the heart.

    I heard my first jazz record when I was 12. Lee Morgan on “Moanin” changed my life forever. Jazz was to become the most important thing in my life.

    Influenced by Clifford Brown and Freddie Hubbard, I joined the Tommy Smith Youth Jazz Orchestra at 15, playing at the Southbank Centre London and the Hub in Edinburgh. I auditioned for the Edinburgh Music School to study music in a more focussed environment. My tutors included Martin Kershaw and pianist David Patrick and I was given classical tuition in both trumpet and piano. I performed Arutunian’s Concerto for Trumpet at St Mary’s Cathedral as part of the Edinburgh Festival. In my last year at school I performed Kenny Wheeler’s “Sweet Time Suite” with NYJOS to audiences across the UK where I received my first review from the Glasgow Herald “Sean Gibbs had a great tone on Flugelhorn”. I was then invited to join the NYJOS Collective and enjoyed touring the country playing with guest soloists such as Julian Arguelles and Tim Garland.

     Highlights [of his time at Birmingham Conservatoire]  have been performing Gil Evans’ “Sketches of Spain” at Birmingham Town Hall, workshops with Dave Holland, having my compositions played by the Conservatoire Jazz Orchestra and having a one to one lesson with a musical idol of mine, John Taylor." ( from a BBC Radio Scotland interview on The Jazz House)

     

    The repertoire we play is mainly original compositions of mine, a couple of which can be heard on this recording we made in December 2013: https://soundcloud.com/#sean-gibbs/sets/quintet-recordings

     

    Sean has a personal biog at www.seangibbs.com

     

     £5 / Members Free

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Welcome to Birmingham Jazz

We are now into our Autumn 2014 season and it's a very busy and interesting one.  There old favourites and new faces so check out the gig list and join us!

 

There's a great mix of national and local bands all in our relaxed atmosphere where audience and bands are up close and involved.

 

Members get reduced admission to national gigs and get in free to Club Nights plus there's good food and drink!

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“Birmingham Jazz have made a strong start to 2013.”

Peter Bacon

The Jazz Breakfast

"Always great to play at Birmingham Jazz. As a musician, its wonderful to be treated with respect. It must be one of the best venues in the country for original new music."

Asaf Sirkis

"To hear a wide range of some of this country's finest jazz musicians up close in a friendly atmosphere, with excellent beer and the option of a good meal, Birmingham Jazz is hard to beat."

Peter Bacon www.thejazzbreakfast.com