March Jazz Notes
To follow the usual Jazz Notes format, Bob Dwyer’s unusually named “Bix & Pieces” provided, as always, an interesting and varied program. It was a delight to find Peter Rudeforth fronting the band. He is a very fine trumpeter (a longtime member of Chris Barbers band), and with Sarah Spencer and Bob provided a strong front line. Our own Andy Crisp was helping out on drums, with regulars John Bayne (he of the mighty bass sax) and Hugh Crozier, a lovely pianist. A certain guitar and banjo player was invited to join in (which I enjoyed very much!).
In March we present an evening of “Gypsy Jazz”. Last year we played host to Italian Dario Napoli with Andy Aitchison which was very well received and following their visit I was contacted by the spokesman for Lollo Meier, the Dutch guitar master. I didn’t take much persuading, so we will be treated to a tribute to Django from his fine quartet, who sport a clarinettist rather than a violinist (as did Django in his latter days). These guys are terrific musicians so we hope there will be a goodly number of you to welcome them to ZJR. You are assured of some dazzling music. By the way your support has been magnificent this year – thank you all very much.
The Lamb was also packed for the visit of Ben Cummings as guest with the regular Rascals. We have known Ben for a long time now and there is always a buzz of excitement about him. He played superbly and launched into some of my new arrangements without batting an eyelid – playing them as if he had been doing so for ever and yet bringing something fresh to them. What a player!
We are keeping things “in the family” in March and have invited Mrs Ben – Lizzie Newbery – to sing with us again which we greatly look forward to. She also possesses this “buzz”, not to mention a liking for interesting and perhaps less well known songs, of which there are a huge number of beautifully crafted pieces. It will be a great evening.
Weekly Tuesday sessions at Theale Village Hall continue with Graeme Hewitt’s High Society jazz band (start time 8.30). Guest trumpeters include Lester Brown (5th and 12th) Peter Rudeforth (19th) and no less than Digby Fairweather (26th).
On the 31st Pete Allen has a Sunday afternoon session (starts at 3pm) at the Chequers in Newbury with Andy Dickens on trumpet.
So lots to enjoy this month – keep jazzing – we look forward to seeing you.