Sax Gigs from June 2016

Written by  on June 1, 2016

>1 June Archie Shepp Ronnie Scott’s, Frith Street, Soho https://www.ronniescotts.co.uk/schedulemonthly/2016/june
2 June Craig Crofton St James Wine Vaults, Bath http://www.stjameswinevaults.co.uk/
craig a ragin'http://www.thetunnelsbristol.co.uk/events/

5 June UB40 (Duncan Campbell Version) Let’s Rock Bristol Festival, Ashton Court Estate http://ub40.global/performances.html

6 June Kevin Figes The Bell, Walcott Street, Bath https://www.ents24.com/bath-events/the-bell-inn

8 June Jake McMurchie Bristol Fringe Bar, Clifton, Bristol http://www.fringejazz.com/gig-list.html

10 June Julien Alenda Bebop Club, The Bear, Hotwells Road, Bristol http://www.thebebopclub.co.uk/index_files/WhatsOn.htm
10 June Tommaso Starace Quartet Meeting House, Ilminster http://www.themeetinghouse.org.uk/music/1473

12 June Julian Arguelles’ Tetra Colston Hall, Bristol http://www.julianarguelles.com/calendar
Bad Manners The Fleece, Victoria Street, Bristol http://thefleece.co.uk/events/

15 June Julien Alenda Bristol Fringe Bar, Clifton, Bristol http://www.fringejazz.com/gig-list.html

17 June Darius Brubeck Quartet Meeting House, Ilminster http://www.themeetinghouse.org.uk/music/1474

18 June UB40 (feat. Ali Campbell) Westonbirt Arboretum http://ub40.org/ub40_live/

19 June Andy Sheppard Hen & Chicken, Bedminster, Bristol http://www.jazzata.com/

21 June Simon Spillett New Inn, Westerleigh http://www.simonspillett.com/liveappearances2016.htm

22 June Grupo Ritmo (feat. Craig Crofton) Canteen, Stokes Croft, Bristol http://www.canteenbristol.co.uk/music/
22 June Mankala The Bell, Walcott Street, Bath http://www.mankalaband.com/upcoming-gigs/

24 June Bristol Reggae Orchestra Pound Arts Centre, Corsham https://bristolreggaeorchestra.com/

29 June Andy Sheppard Bristol Fringe Bar, Clifton, Bristol http://www.fringejazz.com/gig-list.html

30 June Simon Spillett Future Inn, Temple Way, Bristol http://www.simonspillett.com/liveappearances2016.htm
30 June Karen Sharp St James Wine Vaults, Bath http://www.stjameswinevaults.co.uk/

1,2,3 July Mindi Abair Pizza Express Jazz Club, Soho https://mindi-abair.squarespace.com/tour/

10 July Pete Gage Band (feat. Craig Crofton) Cornerhouse, Frome http://www.petegagemusic.com/#!gigs/c1c5j

13 July Ed Jones Bristol Fringe Bar, Clifton, Bristol http://www.fringejazz.com/gig-list.html

15 July Courtney Pine The Convent, South Woodchester, Stroud http://www.courtneypine.co.uk/live.htm

16 July Pete Gage Band (feat. Craig Crofton) Old Duke, Bristol http://www.petegagemusic.com/#!gigs/c1c5j

Marlborough Jazz Festival http://www.marlboroughjazz.com/index.php/programme
15 July Alexander Bone / George Haslam / Ed Jones / Red Stripe Band / Tori Freestone
16 July Art Themen / Clair Hirst / Kevin Figes/ Protect the Beat / Baraka

17 July Baraka Harbour Festival, Bristol http://www.barakamusic.co.uk/index2.htm
23 July Jungle by Night The Fleece, Victoria Street, Bristol http://thefleece.co.uk/events/

24 July Pete Gage Band (feat. Craig Crofton) The Bell, Bath http://www.petegagemusic.com/#!gigs/c1c5j

27 July Alan Barnes/Gilad Atzmon Ronnie Scott’s, Soho https://www.ronniescotts.co.uk/schedulemonthly/2016/july

27 August The Beat Tyntesfield, Wraxall http://www.thebeatofficial.com/tour

3 September Pete Gage Band (feat. Craig Crofton) Kings Head, Didmarton http://www.petegagemusic.com/#!gigs/c1c5j

10 September Pete Gage Band (feat. Craig Crofton) Royal Exchange, Hartpury http://www.petegagemusic.com/#!gigs/c1c5j

4 October The Beat (feat. Dave Wakeling ,NOTE: different band from 27 August gig!) http://www.komedia.co.uk/bath/music/

15 October Logicaltramp Huntingdon Hall, Worcester http://www.logicaltramp.co.uk/

20 October Tim Garland St George’s, Brandon Hill, Bristol http://editionrecords.com/artists/tim-garland/

22 October UB40 O2, Frogmore Street, Bristol http://ub40.global/performances.html
22 October Emperials The Tunnels, Temple Meads, Bristol http://www.thetunnelsbristol.co.uk/events/

28 October UB40 GL1 Centre, Gloucester http://ub40.global/performances.html

12 November The Emperials The Fleece, Victoria Street, Bristol http://thefleece.co.uk/events/

London Jazz Festival http://www.efglondonjazzfestival.org.uk/events
12 November Joshua Redman TheBarbican
13 November Jan Garbarek Royal Festival Hall
15 November Chris Potter Cadogan Hall; Yolanda Brown The Barbican; Donny McCaskin Rich Mix, Bethnal Green
16 November Marius Neset St Luke’s , E1
20 November Wayne Shorter The Barbican

16 November The Slackers The Fleece, Victoria Street, Bristol http://thefleece.co.uk/events/

2 December Madness Motorpoint Arena, Cardiff https://www.ents24.com/cardiff-events/motorpoint-arena-cardiff/madness/4722629

3 December The Blockheads The Fleece, Victoria Street, Bristol http://thefleece.co.uk/events/

Branford Marsalis Bath Abbey, 21 May Kansas Smitty’s House Band Bath Guildhall, 21 May by John Heenan

Written by  on June 1, 2016

I’ve read two or three other reviews of Branford Marsalis’ performance. This one, by Clive Davis from The Times on 23 May, pretty well sums up my feelings about the show (and Kansas Smitty’s), though I feel that just two stars is a little harsh – I’d certainly give three (and possibly a half).

For me, it was worth an extra star just to hear his excellent rendition of Good Places from the Beaver & Krause album, Gandharva – an album recorded in Grace Cathedral, San Francisco, where Marsalis recorded his In my Solitude album which gave this performance its title.

Four stars for Kansas Smitty’s lot is right – 1½ hours passed in moments!

Branford Marsalis ★★☆☆☆ Bath Abbey, 21 May
Kansas Smitty’s House Band ★★★★☆ Bath Guildhall, 21 May

The bells at churches in the city were due to ring before Branford Marsalis made his entry into Bath Abbey. The setting could not have been more evocative as Wynton’s slightly less-famous brother arrived to perform his solo saxophone recital. In the end, though, the music, pensive but seldom compelling, never quite overcame the limitations of the format.

A technician’s technician, Marsalis is one of the few improvisers who would attempt anything this ambitious. And there were certainly moments, mostly during the tenor rather than the soprano or alto sequences, when his playing made good use of the acoustics. Organ-like notes ricocheted around the walls in Blues for One as the evening light faded.

Yet even though he mixed classical pieces – including a sliver of a Bach cello suite – into the repertoire, the evening became a test of endurance. Barely speaking to the audience, Marsalis left his listeners to grope their way forward with no clue to what was coming next on the programme. It seemed odd, too, that there was not more overtly religious music on display. If Sonny Rollins always struck a heroic pose, Marsalis is much more of a watchmaker, efficiently assembling angular fragments of familiar standards such as Stardust or Rollins’ own Doxy. Impressive, yes. Impassioned, no.

Sometimes you worry jazz is going to fall victim to a lethal, self-administered dose of solemnity. There is no danger of any such fate befalling Kansas Smitty’s House Band, the cult London swing group. The Guildhall venue may have been ultra-formal, but the octet’s musicianship was joyful and exuberant as well as precise. Magnificent stuff.