Tag: London Jazz Festival

Autumn Gig Dates Announced

Having started my Masters studies at the Guildhall School of Music and Drama this month, I have a raft of gig dates to announce in London and Cambridge. I’ll be performing alongside other post-graduate students in a pair of free concerts, as well as with the award-winning big band at the London Jazz Festival and the Vortex Jazz Club. I’ll also be appearing as a guest with EM and Vesperados will be returning to Hot Numbers in Cambridge for another evening of Latin Jazz.

06/10/14, 6pm, FREE – Guildhall Small Band Jazz Evening
17/10/14, 7.30pm, FREE – Guildhall Jazz Band, Milton Court
19/10/14, 3.00pm, £8 – London Jazz Orchestra/Guildhall Jazz Band @ Vortex
07/11/14, 7.30pm, FREE – EM, Cambridge
08/11/14, 11am, £10 – Cambridge Jazz Co-op
17/11/14, 6pm, FREE – Guildhall Small Band Jazz Evening
19/11/14, 7.30pm, £15/10 – Guildhall Jazz Band at the London Jazz Festival
05/12/14, 7.30pm, FREE – Vesperados, Cambridge

Guildhall Small Band Jazz Evening
Monday 6th October, 6pm
Monday 17th November, 6pm
Lecture Recital Room, Guildhall School of Music and Drama, Silk Street, London
Performances from groups of postgraduate and final-year jazz students from the Guildhall. Three bands a night for nothing!

Guildhall Jazz Band
Friday 17th October, 7.30pm
Silk Street Music Hall, Guildhall School of Music and Drama, Silk Street, London
The year’s first performance from the Guildhall’s award-winning big band.

Sunday 19th October, 3.00pm
Vortex Jazz Club, 11 Gillett Square, London
The Guildhall Jazz Band join top pro big band the London Jazz Orchestra for an afternoon of big band music.

Friday 7th November, 7.30pm
Hot Numbers Coffee, Gwydir Street, Cambridge
Led by pianist/accordionist/composer Dan Ecclestone, this Cambridge-based group plays original music bringing together rock and jazz in a groovy, infectious blend.

Cambridge Jazz Co-operative
Saturday 8th November, 11am-1.30pm
Meadows Community Centre, Cambridge
I will be returning for my third session with the co-op, leading a workshop for amateur jazz musicians exploring ideas and strategies for improvisation.
£10 (members); non members must pay an additional £10 for annual membership.

Guildhall Jazz Band at the London Jazz Festival
Wednesday 19th November, 7.30pm
Milton Court, Silk Street, London
The Guildhall’s big band performs as part of the world-class London Jazz Festival.

Vesperados at Hot Numbers
Friday 5th December, 7.30pm
Hot Numbers Coffee, Gwydir Street, Cambridge
My band Vesperados return to Hot Numbers in a new format for an evening of Latin-influenced music.

London Jazz Festival 2012 Part 1

After rejoining Cambridge University Jazz Band after a break after graduation in 2012, I was lucky enough to have them play some new arrangements of mine at the Bull’s Head, Barnes, during the 2012 London Jazz Festival (which only gave us a couple of rehearsals to put together 2 hours of music!).  We managed to get a rough live recording of my arrangement of In the Wee Small Hours of the Morning, which has always been a favourite ballad of mine:


This seemed like a big challenge at first since I didn’t think the usual stock-in-trade technique of heavily harmonising the melody with similar lines would work.  The melody is actually quite square and dull if you play it exactly as written – I think there needs to be quite a bit of rhythmic freedom to bring it out.  So I decided that a good deal of it would be played by a single player – primarily a tenor sax (although I did give myself a short flugel section for the fun of it – then promptly forgot the notes on the gig!), here played by Simon Warder, a talented science student at the University.  To preserve the beauty of the melody, I then kept the harmonic accompaniment mostly very simple, reharmonising it gradually into new forms as it went along.  As I got into the solo section, the progression so strongly suggested Bach to me that I had to go and rip of the G major cello suite!  After that, some thicker textures with different harmony, a climax and we’re done!  Hope you enjoy this – I hope to have the chance to get a recording under better circumstances at some point.