It has been drawn to my attention that I have neglected this blog for twelve months. I cannot deny this and plan to make amends with regular publication again. So beware!
There has already been some great music since 2019 kicked off and the gigs I have been to have been well supported. So my choice does echo that of many of you fans. I have also read that Jazz is having a nation wide revival, led by “Jazz Refreshed” in London. Frankly I get irritated by some of the rubbish written by non-jazz journalists about the jazz scene. Yes, there are some brilliant young jazz musicians newly on the scene and they are creating a stir, but to suggest a) that the scene nationwide needed reviving and that b) this is happening because of a certain spot in London, is ludicrous. Jazz events in the Reading area abound and have done for years now. This applies to many towns and cities. It never died so, does not need reviving. Young musicians revitalise established musical genres and that may be what is happening and that is great. Let us hope we get some more of the new blood in our area in the coming months.
Oh, look we have!
Goring Jazz welcomes the Misha Mullov-Abaddo Band on Friday 8th. A sextet of newcomers led by the bassist Misha, who in 2014 gained the Kenny Wheeler Jazz Prize and the Dankworth prize for music composition. Since graduating from the Royal Academy he is extremely active in the London jazz scene and this gig is part of the new album tour. A friend of mine saw this band recently and was very impressed.
Young in heart Georgie Fame is at the Kenton Theatre, Henley on the 7th although the website detail is rather scant I am sure he will delight the audience with his unique vocal style and tales from his now many years in the business.
A musician who enables the younger generation to gain experience through gigging is drummer Clark Tracey and he brings his quintet to Fleet Jazz on Tuesday 19th March featuring Alexandra Ridout on trumpet and outstanding pianist Elliot Sansom, Sean Payne-Alto, James Owston-bass. I experienced the band last July at Swanage and they are great.
We have two lovely vocalists on the scene this month. Tina May on the 15th at Norden Farm, Maidenhead and Sara Dowling at Jagz in Ascot on Mothering Sunday 31st March, at lunchtime.
Jazz In Reading at Progress Theatre on Friday 22nd Get The Blessing make their debut at this popular venue and promise an evening of explosive Jazz-Rock and punchy be-bop. Pete Judge trumpet, Jake McMurchie saxophone, Jim Barr bass, Clive Deamer drums. A chord-less set-up and
bass-drum driven by the Portishead founders.
Most of these shows mentioned are in the gigs diary with links to the venues for tickets.
2019 will be a momentous year for the UK and I for one am not looking forward to it. I was talking to one of our well known jazz artists recently who had just been to Malmo, was going to Poland and then another Eu country. Let us hope that his and others trips remain hassle free, but as we will one day be joining the queues for non-Eu passport holders, that is just one of many hassles to come that we do not need.
Best wishes for Spring,
Jazz n Stuff