Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Just in case you missed the poster for the cancer Research Concert, here it is again. If you would like a PDF File of this, please contact me with your email address and i will send it to you.

Geoff C
Hi Fans,

I just thought now would be a good time to tell you about some of the future gigs we have planned.

Thursday 21st February at Hedsor the guest with the Clive Burton Quartet will be guitarist Martin Cooke.
Sunday 24th February at Fifield, Century Jazz will be complete with the regular saxophonist, the remarkable Mike Wills.

Thursday 28th February at Hedsor the guest will be sax star Peter Cook.
Sunday March 2nd Fifield will have the complete Century Jazz, i.e. Mike Wills will be on sax.

Thursday 6th March, Mike Wills is again with Clive Burton.
Sunday March 9th at Fifield the guest will again be Peter Cook.

On MONDAY 17th March we will have another evening of guitar jazz from James Fenn and Friends.

On FRIDAY March 28th, we are running our Cancer Research UK Charity Concert at The Hedsor Social Club. The Theme is "From Dixieland to Swing AGAIN", and the Clive Burton Quintet will be augmented by John Slater on Trumpet. I am assured other guest will be included in this wonderful evening of fund raising Jazz. Tickets are now on sale from me, and very shortly from Crocks and Crystals in Bourne End, and Delizioso in Cookham. A PDF file of the poster is attached to this mailing.

As this will be the weeks major jazz event, we are NOT planning to have a regular Thursday Session at Hedsor. BUT, the band will be rehearsing there on Thursday 27th, and if anyone wants to turn up to listen, they will be welcome, and there will be NO CHARGE!! But we will ask to see your ticket for Friday!

A very special Jazz guitar night is in prospect for Monday April 21st (note change of date from that previously published). With James Fenn on Guitar and Lisa Amato on Bass Guitar, we are gathering together the multiple talents of Pete Billington on Keyboard, Nick Marangoni on Drums, and Vasilis Xenopoulos on Saxophone. Don't miss this one!

Other jazz gigs are on around the area. At The Bourne End Community Centre on the first Tuesday of every month. At The British Legion Hall in Marlow on Alternate Tuesdays (Tonight IS one of those, and the guest there will be Simon Spillett). Do keep an eye on the blog http://jazzfromgeoff.blogspot.com, and as well as seeing the live stuff advertised, you will get the occasional CD Revue/recommendation.

So, there we have a few things for you to look forward to, and I look forward to seeing you at some, if not all, of these full value jazz nights.


Geoff C

Thursday, February 14, 2008

More information on our guest pianist for next Monday's guitar jazz night at the Hedsor Social Club. The pianist will be :-

Holger Skepeneit
- Holger started playing classical piano at the age of eight and turned to jazz and blues at fourteen. After finishing school he briefly attended a full-time jazz course in Frankfurt/Germany. He then came to England to study piano, jazz piano and composition at the London College of Music, graduating in 2000 with a first class honours degree. The same year he started and completed successfully an MMus in jazz piano at the Leeds College of Music. Since graduating he’s been a sought after pianist, keyboard player, composer and MD. During his career so far he has performed and recorded along side artists such as Pete King, Jeff Clyne, Tina May, Alan Barnes, John Wheatcroft, Steve Waterman, Alan Shaw, Mark Nightingale, Kiranpal Sing, John Surman and many others. Apart from having played in most of the UK’s major live music venues (including the Southbank, Cadogan Hall, Shepherds Bush Empire, Peel Bay Festival, and the Wigmore Hall), he has so far performed in over 20 different countries, in Europe and overseas. Furthermore Holger has played for the guests of her Majesty the Queen and was awarded the Westminster prize for improvisation. Apart from being a busy performer, Holger is quite a prolific composer as well. His first works (for piano and sax) were published when he was only seventeen. Since then he has written a variety of highly acclaimed pieces ranging from piano concertos and string quartets to Big Band pieces, solo piano works and trio suites. At the moment Holger works mainly with his own trio (with Chris Nicholls on drums and Alan Mian on bass), the Counterfeit Stones and the Balkan Fusion line-up Dark Raki (with Vasilis X). He is also part-time tutor for keyboard and theory at the Institute for Contemporary Music Performance and Thames Valley University). www.myspace.com/holgerskepeneittrio

Thanks to Eddie Fowler for finding/providing this info.

Geoff C

Jazz Nag EXTRA

Information from the front regarding Monday nights guitar led jazz session at Hedsor, with James Fenn and Lisa Amato.

Lisa Amato writes:-

"We have a great pianist coming on Monday for the regular monthly modern jazz thrash. His name is Holger Skepengeit (I think that's how it is spelled) and he's very melodic (we like 'em like that). Still trying to fix a drummer, but I'll let you know when they return my calls!"

We know the usual quality provided by the Fenn team, so do make sure you "get a ticket on the jazz island line" for Monday 18th February!!


Geoff C

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Here we are, and almost already at the Valentines Day post! For me, the significance of the day has changed. It was 6 years ago that I came out of Harley Street after my heart surgery. Time has really flown. But we have also seen and done so many things since, including starting up this regular Jazz Nag.

So, just to keep you occupied this Thursday on St. Valentines Day, we have at The Hedsor Social Club, on all the reeds, Mike Wills, together with the Clive Burton Quartet. Last weeks session with Mike and John Rolls was a really joyous occasion too. The music was wonderful, we had a reasonable turn out, and we almost had enough money to pay the band, which always leaves me smiling! Thursdays at Hedsor always start at 8.30 pm. We still only charge £3 to get in, and we still run the best raffle in Hedsor!

Sunday at The Fifiled Inn it will be the same combination, Mike and Clive. Start time 8 pm, free entry, raffle funded. And the music is just as good!

Don't forget to put in your diary next Monday, February 18th, because at Hedsor we have another guitar led session from James Fenn and Friends, and you know the kind of friends he brings along. So although this month is a pot luck one for the guest, it will be well worth turning out for.

Many of the musicians who play for us at Hedsor are well nationally known names in the jazz firmament, and although we cannot pay them what they are undoubtedly worth, they love coming because of the friendly, knowledgeable audience, and are very happy to keep coming back. I hope that also applies to you!

Bearing that preamble in mind, our next Concert for Cancer Research UK is on Friday March 28th, and at Hedsor (for the first time). We are trying to make Hedsor the local "home" for jazz, and I hope many of you will come along and support the charity. £10 will get you in and we have tickets for sale now!

Also in to the future, we are organising a very special Monday Date at Hedsor. On April 28th with James Fenn, Lisa Amato, and Nick Marangoni we are putting together Pete Billington on Keyboard and Vasilis Xenopoulos on Saxophone. (I wonder if anyone who saw Vasilis with Clive the other Thursday realise that it was the first time he had played the alto sax, as well as his usual tenor! It was new to him!). This session is a special, it will cost us more money, but it will be unmissable, put it in your diary NOW. It could be the start of a whole new band!

When your not out soaking up the live jazz, you may want to listen to some at home. CD's I've listened to recently, and can heartily recommend are:-

"Billy Taylor and Gerry Mulligan Live at MCG"

Recorded in Pittsburgh in 1993 this late Mulligan session, recorded before an audience, is a wonderful addition to the Mulligan catalogue. Dr Billy Taylor is a very accomplished pianist, in full sympathy with the small group Mulligan sound. There are some wonderful tunes ("Laura", "All the Things You Are", "Come Sunday") and the quartet (Chip Jackson is on bass and Carl Allen on Drums) play with great integration. It's well recorded too. I think you will need to order it from a specialist jazz dealer, as its on MCG Jazz (a local to Pittsburgh label). MCGJ1025 is the number, you can see the rest of the catalogue at http://www.mcgjazz.org/ so you may well be able to order online too.

The other CD is much more home grown, but very similar in style and feel.

"Karen Sharp Wait and See" features the young lady saxophonist who first came to most peoples attention with the Humphrey Lyttleton Band, which she left last year to further her own career. With Karen are Adrian Fry on trombone, John Perry drums, Richard Busiakiewicz on piano and John Day on bass. This combination of instruments is very familiar to listeners of the Clive Burton Quintet, and Karen's playing is mature, the ensemble playing recognises the harmonies that work, and the solos are all well executed. Many of the tunes are Karen's own, but two exceptions stand out, "Pure Imagination" and"Struttin' With Some Barbecue". It was recorded in 2006, and is available on 33 Records 33JAZZ152. 33 records often pick up and present fresh talent, who usually go on to be contracted to more prestigious labels. I'd go out and buy this one now, as it will become a collectors item! Its also a great listen, and over the last fortnight, not been put into a storage draw.

That's it for now folks, don't forget to support local live jazz, without you in the audience there will be no jazz tomorrow!

Geoff C

Wednesday, February 06, 2008

A Belated Reminder that tomorrow is another Thursday, which means we have some Jazz at Hedsor from 8.30 pm onwards. For a measly £3, we will give you two tenors!! With our regular rhythm section, you can hear Mike Wills, and John Rolls. What a bargain!

And rushing towards us is Sunday, where at Fifield, you can listen to another great saxophonist, Al Nicholls. And this one tenor, is actually free. You do of course have to buy a raffle ticket, but we must be better value than Mr. Livingston.OK, so it's jazz by stealth! 8 pm start.

Not too distant is our next effort to raise money for Cancer Research UK. Tickets for March 28th are now available at £10 each. See the above for the poster. (A right mouse click will let you save it full size).

CD reviews soon, its been a busy week,


Geoff C

PS Booking is now underway for the Swanage Jazz Festival. July 11th, 12th and 13th. A Copy of the booking form is above (but very small!). Contact the Festival Office on 01929 422215 for your own copy of the brochure and booking form.