31 Mar

Getting Jazz Gigs in Manchester

Getting jazz gigs for your band these days can be tough but Manchester is a good city to get playing. Some of my favourite jazz venues are in Manchester and they always seem to be promoting new talent alongside more established acts. Check out Band on the Wall in the Northern Quarter. They feature some cool modern jazz as well as sould, funk etc. Speak with some managers and get yourself some gigs. Another good place is Manchester Jazz Festival – they also promote new bands so send them a demo cd. Check out this post we found: How to Get Gigs in ManchesterMusicians Wanted Manchester.

08 Mar

Jazz Music Blog – Favourite UK Jazz Venues

Here are our favourite jazz venues from across the UK.

1. Matt and Phreds, Manchester
2. The Vortex, London
3. The 606, London
4. Ronnie Scott’s, London
5. Jazz Cafe, London

05 Mar

Wedding Music Blog

A new music blog has been launched by wedding music samples.co.uk.

Their wedding music blog features help and advice from wedding industry professionals. Check out the blog for more info if you are planning a summer wedding in 2010 and would like some planning advice.

15 Feb

Jazz Music Instruments

Q. Which instruments are most commonly associated with jazz music?
A. The rhythm section of a jazz band is made up of Double (or acoustic) bass, drum kit and either piano or guitar. The piano and guitar are reffered to as harmony instruments and as they cover the same ground, they are often not used at the same time. The most common “lead” instruments (or melody instruments) are trumpet, trombone, saxophone (tenor, alto & baritone) and of course, vocals. There are other instruments which are used less often. Some examples of these are harmonica, vibraphone, violin and cello.

02 Feb

Best Jazz Music

How do you define what is the best jazz music around at the moment. Its really difficult question and one which requires serious thought and energy. If you consider the likes of what I would call “true jazz” players like Christian Scott or Avashai Cohen then other spectrums of jazz are often thought of in a less than favourable light. Any mention of Jane Monheit or Michael Buble would be quashed immediatly by any true jazz listener. Conversely, more outside music might be considered a step too far and most avant-garde free jazz would probably be thrown out with the rubbish. I`m not really sure what my point is here but I believe it`s somewhere along the line of – listen to it all and decide by how it sounds and not base your judgement on genre! On a seperate note visit Jazz Bands London, a site featuring some bands for hire in London.

02 Feb

Amazing Jazz

Number 1 – MIles Davis – Kind of Blue
Number 2 – Ella Fitzegerald – Skylark
Number 3 – Woody Herman – Big Band
Number 4 – Herbie Hancock – Canteloupe Island
Number 5 – Thelonious Monk – Greatest Hits
Number 6 – John Coltrane – Giant Steps
Number 7 – Billie Holiday – Classic Hits

31 Jan

The Best Jazz Music

Sometimes we wonder why we listen to and play jazz but then we realise… it really is the best music out there! Living in london we really are spoilt for choice with a scene second only to New York and there are an infinite number of great gigs happening every night of the week. Places like the Vortex, Charlie Wrights and the Jazz Cafe are open most nights of the week. Check them out to see some of the top musicians in London playing their jazz hearts out.

30 Jan

Ronnie Scott’s Preview

Jazz Orchestra Gig 3rd February 2010 – Should be a great one. Featuring music by the great Ronnie`s legend Tubby Hayes, this really is a concert not to miss.
Billy Cobham Paindrome Tour – 17th February 2010 – A great band featuring the following wonderful players: Billy Cobham – Drums, Jean-Marie Ecay – Guitars, Christophe Cravero – Keyboards/Violin, Camelia Ben Naceur – Keyboards, Fifi Chayeb – Bass, Junior Gill – Steel pan/KAT Mallets.

28 Jan

Gig Reviews

The Bad Plus – South Bank Centre

The bad plus are one of my favourite new jazz groups to emerge over the last 5-10 years. They play challenging covers and stay away almost entirerly from the standard repertoire. One of my personal favourite songs is Blondie`s “heart if glass” which owes as much to the Aphex Twin version as to the Blondie original.
Basically they are a classic piano trio (piano, acoustic bass & drums) but there sound is anything but. Especially from Smith`s drums where he chooses odd tunings and an almost broken drum sound to create a much more original and modern sound. Almost hinting towards a low-fi electronic drum sound.
The bassist also uses his amp very well to conjur up different timbers and effects. All this without sounding strained or too teenage… How many band out there think that adding effects to an otherwise terrible song will make it better? Lots is the answer!

25 Jan

Top 10 1960`s Jazz Musicians

1. Miles Davis
2. John Coltrane
3. Sonny Rollins
4. Thelonius Monk
5. Charles Mingus
6. Art Blakey
7. Freddy Hubbard
8. Ornette Coleman
9. Bill Evans
10. Wayne Shorter

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