The Jazzlines Month - June 2013

I write after an amazing week of jazz in Birmingham that provides yet further evidence of the strength of the scene in the city.

Last Tuesday 28 May, Jazzlines collaborated with Blam! and Jazz at The Spotted Dog to present Art Themen with a Birmingham rhythm section: Gareth Fowler on guitar, Chris Mapp on bass and Miles Levin on drums. This was a revival of a long jazz tradition of presenting a name soloist with a local rhythm section and it worked really well with Art on top form and interacting very effectively with the three Birmingham players.

Wednesday saw Roller Trio supported by Colin Mills’ Mendeleev Quartet at the Hare and Hounds. Roller Trio were trying out a lot of new material and this added an exciting edge to their impressive performance. Colin Mills was also trying out a lot of new material, and this will be a band that will grow if it gets the opportunity to play regularly.

The Jazz Breakfast reviewed the gig here.

Thursday saw a great Fizzle gig at the Lamp Tavern with The Deep Whole Trio. This is a trio with Paul Dunmall, Paul Rogers and Mark Sanders and in it we hear yet again what a great and inventive improviser Paul Dunmall is. Then two gigs on Friday: a very interesting new quartet at the Jazzlines Free Gigs session led by Ben Markland and Neil Bullock and featuring Jazzlines FellowLluis Mather and Gareth Fowler, a young and very impressive guitarist new to most of the audience.

Read a thoughtful piece about Dutilleux, the French composer who died recently and Messaien, by Lluis, here.

Finally on Friday evening a wonderful, beautiful concert with Nikki Iles’ Printmakers featuring the great vocalist Norma Winstone. Nikki and Norma also ran a workshop as part of Jazzlines’ Women in Jazz project.

The Jazz Breakfast reviewed the gig here.

On Saturday night I went down to The Vortex Jazz Club in London for the launch of Dan Nicholls’ album Ruins on the Loop label. Dan is one of our three Jazzlines Fellows. At this launch it was fascinating to observe how Dan has become a key figure amongst the group of players in London who set up The Loop Collective and are developing particular styles of contemporary jazz. These players, James Allsopp, Tom Challenger, Kit Downes and Dave Smith were all in the band. Dan talks about the album and his colleagues in an interview with London Jazz Newshere

Look out for the Tom Rainey Trio featuring drummer Tom Rainey, saxophonist Ingrid Laubrock and guitarist Mary Halvorson at Cafe Ort on Friday 7 June at 9pm.

Coming up, there are two great unmissable gigs! First up on Thursday 13 June, the Jazzlines Free Gigs at the University of Birmingham’sBramall Music Building continues with the Phil Robson Organ Trio. Phil is a guitarist with whom we have worked for many years setting up tours and commissioning new work. He is another key figure on the British jazz scene and to hear in a free entry session at Bramall is a great opportunity for audiences.

Of course our regular sessions, every week at 5pm in Symphony Hall’s Cafe Bar, are still running and on Tuesday 18 June we present Kevin Figes Quartet at The Jam House.

The highlight this month has to be Django Bates’ Belovèd at the CBSO Centre on Friday 14 June at 8pm. Django is, in my opinion, a most talented UK musician, and his current work with the Beloved Trio (Petter Eldh on bass and Peter Bruun on drums) is just brilliant. Originally the trio concentrated on interpreting tunes by Charlie Parker, but now they have added some of Django’s originals and have kept in many Parker tunes. In live performance the interaction between the three members of the trio is stunning and makes for a wonderful concert.

– Tony Dudley-Evans, Jazz Adviser

Details of all Jazzlines events can be found here

Django Bates’ Belovèd play at Jazzahead in Bremen, April 2013