Hot, cool and bubbly jazz take over
It might be coincidence, but jazz is big on the music scene this month, with bands inspired by music from the West to East coasts.
Lovers of the cool sounds of Californian jazz, the hot sounds of New York’s 52nd Street, as well as the multi-layered blast of big band have all got something to look forward to as venues get behind a resurgence in this fantastic music.
It may be the Jamie Cullum effect (check out his excellent Radio 2 show at 7pm on Thursdays) – but there’s now the regular great Sunday afternoon Jazzface sessions at The Albert in Hitchin, and coming up in the next week and a bit, a mixed party bag of jazz.
First up on Saturday night is The 52nd Street Quintet at the Neon Jazz Club at The Cricketers in Ickleford.
Saxophonist Pepe Derick, painist Clive Flency, bassist Pete Myatt and guitarist Phillip Grimshaw are the mainstay with special guests invited from Letchwoth Jazz Workshop.
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Pepe said: “The band name signifies the style of music as this was the street where Charlie Parker played bebop. We also play John Coltrane tunes and we get an authentic sound of 50s Blue Note jazz.”
On Tuesday evening, the 30-strong North Herts Youth Jazz Big Band pack the stage at Club85 in Hitchin. Performing tunes from the ’40s and ’50s to big band versions of contemporary songs, the emphasis is on fun.
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The free, all-ages gig has been organised by Rhythms of the World to make up for the rain-enduced cancellation of the first few acts this year and also features the sweet and soulful vocals of young Roxy Searle.
The following Sunday – October 28 – the accomplished Village Jazz Sextet, featuring the fine female vocalist Soh Breezy, play the West Coast sounds of Dave Brubeck, Stan Getz and Gerry Mulligan at Letchworth Arts Centre.
Entry is a fiver with the music kicking off at 8pm.