Tuesday, February 23, 2016


We have a slight change to our personnel!! OK, you are used to the occasional absence of a player due to certain community service necessities, but usually, the leader of the band has managed to be with us. This week, due to the need to attend a funeral in Lyme Regis, Clive Burton will be absent. His place wont be taken! But in his place we will have guitarist John Coverdale augmenting the rest of the band.

We do see and hear John from time to time at Hedsor, and it is always a joy. Anyone who heard his part of the St Pirans Day of Jazz in September 2015 will remember it. He did lead from the front that day, and it was some of the best improvised jazz of the day.

Live, unrehearsed jazz, is a living creation, a pure art form that truly entertains. It is unpredictable, but often exciting, so do come along on Thursday and help to be part of the creation. Yes, if you are there you will be part of the creation! Musicians respond to the audience they play to. In a room the size of Hedsor, more audience will mean more excitement!!

Don’t forget we have another guitarist coming to entertain us on March 10th. Nigel Price will be joining our quintet, with Robert Goodhew as our reed section.

This week I have listened to one or two CD’s that are new to me. A couple I had looked forward to playing, only to be mildly disappointed with the result. One that I had put aside thinking, “well, I’ll have a listen but I don’t anticipate too much” has in fact brought a real smile to my face. The sad part is that because “the others” had taken up listening time, I haven’t yet heard all of this one!

“This One” is by a lady singer that I had not previously heard of, Zoe Francis!

It is her second CD, and with her on it are Jim Mullen guitar, Stan Sutzmann tenor sax, Gareth Williams piano, Mick Hutton bass, and Enzo Zirilli drums. I really feel that although these musicians are renowned for their individual jazz ability, this time the sum of the total is greater than the individual parts. So far I have only heard two tracks, but it is a CD I am anxious to get back to. Zoe herself doesn’t sound like Billie Holiday, but certain parts of her phrasing do remind me of Billie. Zoe has a much brighter tone to her voice than BH, but her timing and feel for the pace of the music is superb.

The recording is a “live” one (not one from beyond the grave!), and is a very good recording with only a slightly muddy sound from the piano. It was recorded at London’s 606 Club, and I think all the musicians are all playing a little out of their comfort zone. This, as is often the case, leads to some very interesting improvisations.

“The Very Thought of You” was recorded in 2014, and is available on Diving Duck Recordings DDRCD023

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

This Week at HEDSOR JAZZ

We have our usual assortment of music and musicians(!) and I think we are back to our regular line up. 

Martin Hart will again be on drums after a 3 week gap where his spot in the band was very ably taken by Mike Jeffries. Ken Rankine will be dropping in from Portland to play bass, and the front line, complete with teeth and glue will be Clive Burton and Mike Wills. AND of course, and always to tumultuous applause, we have Nigel Fox on keyboard.

Two things of note for future consumption. Below is a poster for our concert on March 10th with guitarist Nigel Price, and you will see that we will also have saxophonist Robert Goodhew joining our front line. Actually he will be completing our front line alongside Clive, as Mike Wills seems to be in love with the railings around Oxford! Must ask him what colour paint he uses.

Another future date for your diary concerning "our team", or some of them anyway, takes place in Marlow Jazz Club. Anyone who came to the day of jazz at St. Pirans School last September will remember the super set given by Martin Hart and Mike Wills in their tribute to Benny Goodman. I am delighted to tell you that you will have another chance to hear that concert at Marlow Jazz Club on April 12th with exactly the same personnel as before. 

Above is a cutting from Michael Eagleton's Marlow Jazz web site 

Close inspection will reveal that the photo of the band was taken (by me) at the St. Pirans event. I did make a recording of this set available to Michael and I am delighted that he has now booked the band for his club.

That's probably enough for you to digest on any given Wednesday. I suggest coffee and chocolate digestives should now follow. See you all Thursday.

Geoff C

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Jazz at The Hedsor Social Club


In my earlier blog bit this week I asked you to make sure you had the evening free on Thursday March 10th . At that time I could not confirm who our BIG NAME in jazz  was going to be. NOW I CAN!!

He has been to Hedsor a number of times. Tonight (Feb 10th), he is at Ronnie Scotts, but on MARCH 10th he will be with US at Hedsor.

NIGEL PRICE, ace guitarist, and in my view one of the best jazz guitarists in the world will be with us again at Hedsor Jazz. He is much sought after, and will again be at the Swanage Jazz Festival in July. You can hear him, talk with him and buy CDs from him much sooner at Hedsor Jazz.

Nigel on a Previous Visit to Hedsor Jazz

This is a brief resume of his career:-

"NIGEL PRICE - who led his organ trio to pick up the 2010 Parliamentary Jazz Award for “best jazz ensemble” is one of the most highly regarded and in demand guitarists on the UK jazz scene today.He spent three years with UK funk legends - the James Taylor Quartet, placed third in the 2014 British Jazz Awards for “best guitarist” and is also a regular performer at Ronnie Scott’s, where he has played over 400 times.

His blend of flowing bebop lines, deep blues feeling and mastery of
chording has made him instantly accessible and popular with jazz audiences".

Hedsor Jazz is building a great reputation for first class jazz sessions.

For Nigel, the evening will be at our normal start time of 8.30pm and our normal entry fee of £6, and you may even win a raffle prize!!

He will of course be accompanied by our own Clive Burton Quartet!

Tuesday, February 09, 2016

Hedsor Jazz

At least you do get a blog this week! 

I’m having serious trouble shaking off this cold, now in its second week, and I am using it as an excuse to be lazy (no rude comments please)!

At Hedsor this week we have another relatively normal week (well for band personnel anyway). It will be Mike Jeffries last week as a dep for our “regular” drummer Martin Hart, so do come along and listen to him again, I know from a number of comments I have received how much you have enjoyed him being with us.

Our regular bass player will be back with us this week. Sounds like Ken Rankine had a good time last week with some well know BIG names in jazz.

Talking of Big Names in jazz we hope to bring you an “interesting” evening on March 10th. Keep the night free, as you may well be able to welcome at least one of our favourite stars back again.

No, not THEM, although it does show that we do sometimes mix in elevated company!

Due to this infernal cold I haven’t done so much CD listening as usual. Continual blowing of nose, followed by a cough, does rather interrupt the flow of the music. BUT I have been aimed this week at an extremely good streaming audio jazz site. The kind of music is a bit more traditional than that which I listen to these days, but when traditional jazz is played well, it is still very entertaining. Why not give it a try yourself .  

There are 2 channels to listen to at any one time and the standard of play is superb. Some of the names are also very well known, and the performances appear all to be live, (that means with an audience)!!

Don’t forget that my recordings of January 28th are still available for you to download with my DropBox link, this week I have added the track listings in as well.

Happy computing, but live jazz is at The Hedsor Social Club!!