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Remembering John and Margery Styles, founder members of Smith’s Academy.
20 January 2022
WESTBROOKJAZZ NEWS - BREAKING THE SILENCE
WESTBROOK JAZZ BACK ON STAGE
Performances in the London Jazz Festival in November signalled a return to live performance after two years of enforced inactivity. Three different programmes were offered: Westbrook Blake, The Granite Band’s ‘Earth Felt The Wound’ and Mike Westbrook’s solo ‘The Piano and Me’. Further performances of all three are lined-up for 2022, a year which will also see the return of the Westbrook Trio, and the Quartet’s ‘Love Or Infatuation’. First in the field is The Uncommon Orchestra with ‘On Duke’s Birthday in April.
The full programme will be announced shortly.
By popular demand the return date of the Uncommon Orchestra to Ronnie Scott’s has been extended to two nights, April 12th and 13th.
After several postponements due to Covid, audiences will at last be able to hear the fullscale, 24-piece version of On Duke’s Birthday, Mike Westbrook’s tribute to Duke Ellington. Premiered in France in 1985 to mark the 10th anniversary of Duke’s death, it was recorded by an 11-piece band.The piece has been extended over the years to embrace new ideas, and new musicians alongside some of the original creators the piece:Dominique Pifarely, Chris Biscoe, Phil Minton, Kate and Mike Westbrook. The performances will be dedicated to the memory of musicians particularly associated with the work: lead trumpeter Stuart Brooks, trombonist Danilo Terenzi, saxophonist Lou Gare and drummer Tony Marsh.
The full line-up is: Roz Harding Chris Biscoe Pete Whyman Sarah Dean Alan Wakeman Ian Wellens saxophones Dominique Pifarely violin Frank Schaefer cello Kate Westbrook Phil Minton voices Graham Russell Robin Pengilley Andy Hague Sam Massey trumpets Joe Carnell Sam Chamberlain-Keen Stewart Stunell Ashley Nayler trombones Billie Bottle piano Jesse Molins guitar Matthew North guitar Marcus Vergette bass Coach York drums
musical direction Mike Westbrook Matthew Bourne.
The tour is supported by Airshaft Trust and managed by Peter Conway Further UK performances will be announced shortly.
see diary for booking information
From 1985 to 2017 Westbrook Jazz published a quarterly newsletter, The Smith’s Academy Informer, about the activities of the Westbrook band.
It began with a suggestion by the late John and Margery Styles that friends and supporters needed to be keep up-to-date as to where and when the band was playing. It grew from there to include background information about projects and travels, comment, reviews, portraits of musicians, jokes and readers’ contributions. As such it offers a unique account of the musical and geographical adventures of a circle of musicians over a thirty-year period, through times of cultural and political change. Up to 2008 the S.A.I. was delivered to subscribers in printed form. Thereafter it has been free on-line. Currently its function is taken over on the website by the combination of Diary, Latest News and Notice Board. Now, thanks to webmaster Chris Topley, all 106 issues of the Informer are available at the click of a mouse here.
GOOSE SAUCE BACK ON THE MENU
Continuing our policy of releasing some of our more unusual recordings and back catalogue digitally, Westbrook Records has just re-issued the Mike Westbrook Brass Band’s 1978 album, Goose Sauce.
Copies of the original vinyl are now collectors’ items, as are the CDs released in Japan in 2007. A spicy brew of street music and music-theatre, the album features the original Band line-up of Phil Minton (trumpet/vocals), Kate Westbrook (tenor horn/vocals), Paul Rutherford (trombone/vocals), Dave Chambers (tenor sax), Mike Westbrook (euphonium/piano) plus new recruits Nisar Ahmad ‘George’ Khan (baritone & soprano saxes) and percussionist Trevor Tomkins. Other Westbrook Records available exclusively as Downloads are: The School of Jolly Dogs (single), Says The Duke (single), After Abbey Road, In Memory of Lou Gare, A Little Westbrook Music, The Paris Album, Mama Chicago, Five Voyages (single), Tamar River (single), Art Wolf, Love or Infatuation, Stage Set, Westbrook Blake/Bright as Fire, After Smith’s Hotel, Piano. Currently in the pipe-line are Mama Chicago/Return Visit and Paintbox Jane.
Full information on Bandcamp.
THE MOVING PICTURE SHOW
A reminder that all 76 of the films shown weekly on the website between April 2020 and October 2021 are now permanently available on the website.
View the full catalogue
GLAD DAY SPECIAL NEW YEAR OFFER
Marking the return of the Westbrook Blake ensemble to the live stage at London’s Cadogan Hall in the London Jazz Festival Westbrook Jazz is offering the Glad Day - Live album at a specially reduced price. Recorded and filmed in concert at London’s Toynbee Hall in 2008 by the late Jon Hiseman, this essential album combines CD and DVD.
Full details on Bandcamp
Price £5.50 + P&P £2 (UK) £4 (abroad)
Audio Download £7
"But, as Blake said, fire will find its form, and this Glad Day represents the perfect convergence of content and form. Violin, accordion and bass put you in mind of Kurt Weill or of Stravinsky's Soldier's Tale, and this playful fantasy of an imaginary folk group is a powerful one - a troupe of minstrels from Blake's own time who have somehow managed to sneak back through a time portal to the modern age". Philip Clark Gramophone
A HAPPY NEW YEAR!
And a Souvenir from the Archives
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