Scotland's Finest Improvisers
Bobby Orr was born on 15 August 1928 in Cambuslang, Lanarkshire, Scotland..His childhood was spent surrounded by, and immersed in, the rich drumming traditions for which the Scots are world renowned. Bobby's father was a drum major, and it was probably written in the stars that he would become a drummer The fact that he began at the tender age of three gives you some idea of the talent we' are dealing with here.
Bobby regularly played at Ronnie Scott's Club, backing top American jazz stars like Zoot Sims, Al Cohn, Milt Jackson, and Dizzy Gillespie Bobby Orr is one of the true talents of British drumming - a simple summing up for a man who has spent the best part of 70 years playing the instrument we love. His drumming credentials are exemplary and to talk of the past is to see a drummer of an ilk and style that are all too rare these days. But the thing that most impresses is the inspirational way Bobby Orr still plays at 78 years old and recently appeared with Tommy McQuater the veteran Scots trumpeter at Ealing Jazz Festival before his demise.
Jazz Eddie - while erecting posters for Gig 17 in Princes Risborough I was approached from behind by a curious senior citizen - mmm Jazz Eh - have you heard of Bobby Orr the world famous Jazz Drummer? the gentleman said - "I have as it happens" was my terse and forward gazing reply - "Well that's me!" said Bobby - a enthusiastic conversation then ensued about jazz and lapsed well into the Scottish dialect. "Tell 'em I am still alive and drumming" he added. Walters Ash is Rich beyond compare and Scotland is Fair Scunnert. Bobby had a spell as trumpeter with Basil Kirchin's band before giving up to concentrate on Drums after embouchure problems. Bobby's Trio + Guests appear at a fortnightly Sunday Jam Sessions at the Red Lion - Bradenham, Bucks. Sundays fortnightly 7 - 9.30pm
Bobby Orr is available for Drum Tuition and Drum Clinics for all aspiring drummers in Bucks Berks or Oxon - there is no finer local Tutor. If you wish to register your interest and gather like minded students together he would be delighted to impart his insight and skills to all such enthusiasts. - Contact Bobby Orr Drum Tuition
Sebastian Rochford, Aberdonian whose massive hair looks as if someone has plugged him into the mains, has a musical background that explains much of the group Polar Bear's eclectic sound. "I first started playing drums along to Prince and Grace Jones records," he says. "Then I got into Iron Maiden, Metallica and John Bonham of Led Zeppelin." Only later did he discover jazz, and subsequently shared a teacher with orchestral percussionist Evelyn Glennie. "A lot of heavy metal drumming is highly technical and fast," he says. "But what I love is music that doesn't compromise, whether that's Tom Jobim or Pig Destroyer." Roachford has little time for jazz purists: "From the start jazz was a mixture of musics - New Orleans was a giant melting pot. I tend to like bands who are vague as to what their genre is." Plenty of critics have felt this new wave of jazz so distinctive that it ought to have its own label, (candidates include post-jazz and "skronk"), but Roachford is wary of pigeonholing. "I admire artists like Radiohead or Miles Davies, who have made very different records. In the end it's just their music, which they have stamped their identity on, and which people tell each other about. There's a precious freedom to manoeuvre that we'd hate to lose."
John Burgess - Zeus!............of Saxophone
Berklee College student Scotland's
has toured extensively throughout Europe,
and the Middle East, performing with many of the UK's finest
jazz players. He has made several recordings as a sideman and in 1989 was the
winner of the prestigious NFMS. Concert Artist Award.
During a lengthy sojourn in
San Francisco, Burgess immersed
himself in the highly competitive Bay Area scene and he has appeared at jazz
clubs all along the West Coast of America.
In addition to
contemporary jazz, Burgess has performed recitals of both
baroque and 19th century French saxophone music and
his tenor saxophone has been featured in several highly regarded
and jump-jive groups.
In Johns Own Words-
Alyn Cosker has emerged as the top young drummer on the Scottish jazz scene, handsomely fulfilling the promise he showed as a teenager in the Strathclyde Youth Jazz Orchestra.
He has gone on to work in a variety of other contexts, from the Tommy Smith Quartet and the Scottish National Jazz Orchestra to Celtic-rock outfit Wolfstone.
His work as a composer is less familiar. ‘There are a lot of styles going on within his trio, and he wanted to challenge himself’
The trio first came to notice in a sensational set at the Glasgow Jazz Festival’s Homecoming concert last year, introducing electric guitarist David Dunsmuir to a hitherto unsuspecting jazz audience, the better-known Ross Hamilton completing the trio on bass.
Mark began his musical training by earning a degree in music performance at the Royal Scottish Academy of Music. He moved to London to study on the postgraduate jazz course at the Guildhall School of Music after winning the Young Jazz Player of the Year Competition in 1991. Since leaving college Mark has worked in a wide range of musical settings including classical work and shows but is most at home in the jazz world. He has played in all of London’s top jazz venues and at jazz festivals up and down the country. A recent highlight was a week’s engagement at Ronnie Scott’s with the John Critchinson Quartet opposite the Mingus Big Band. Mark’s own group features his clarinet and tenor with the brilliant guitar playing of Colin Oxley and is featured on his highly-rated CDs “I Won’t Dance” and the brand new “How My Heart Sings”. Mark is a member of the Back To Basie Orchestra and the John Wilson Orchestra. He also enjoys appearing in a two-tenor “Al and Zoot” group with Jim Tomlinson and a two-clarinet “Benny” quintet with Julian Stringle. Mark was the featured soloist in a gala “Tribute to Artie Shaw” concert in Dublin’s National Concert Hall in January 2006. A hand-picked 26 piece orchestra accompanied Mark in scintillating performances of original Shaw arrangements including the infamous Interlude in Bb for clarinet and string quartet and Shaw’s virtuoso Concerto for Clarinet .The concert was such a great success that Mark was immediately invited back to perform a Benny Goodman programme in April 2007 and to reprise the Artie Shaw with Strings Concert in October 2007.
special talent was obvious as soon as he appeared on the Edinburgh jazz scene in
his early teens. He recorded his first album, Giant Strides, at the age of
sixteen in 1983 with drummer John Rae, and that same year he won a scholarship,
assisted by an extensive fund-raising programme organised by his music teacher,
Jean Allison, to attend the prestigious Berklee College of Music in Boston.
Scottish National Jazz Orchestra
The great saxophonist Joe Henderson used to say that a jazz
orchestra should have all the colour and power of a big band and yet be as
mobile as a quartet. While regularly paying heed to Henderson’s wishes since
playing its first concerts in 1995, the Scottish National Jazz Orchestra has
added another quality by being as malleable as Plasticine. Under the sure
direction of Tommy Smith, SNJO has moulded and remoulded itself into the shape
and character of the classic big bands of Ellington, Basie, Kenton and now
Herman, and moved forward to interpret Monk, Mingus and Coltrane in the spirit
of these idiosyncratic giants. It has taken further leaps into the latin and
rock infused compositions of Chick Corea and Pat Metheny and proved its
astonishing versatility by commissioning
and performing brave new works by the
English maverick Keith Tippett, the Gil Evans of
our times, Maria Schneider, and members of the
Newton Growing up in Renfrewshire,
Scotland, Newton had a musical upbringing with the piano trio sound of Peterson,
Tatum or Garner an ever-present feature in the Newton household. After
graduating from Leeds College of Music in 1979 David Newton freelanced around
Yorkshire and eventually became a resident musician at the Stephen Joseph
Theatre in Scarborough for two and a half years. A move to Edinburgh followed
where theatre work using local musicians quickly led to an established position
on the Scottish jazz scene but after some four years there, his old roommate
from college, Alan Barnes, persuaded him to move to London where he rapidly
became a much sought after pianist teaming up with Barnes, guitarist Martin
Taylor and saxophonist Don Weller.
Eileen Hunter is most well known as a Flautist, Pianist and Vocalist. Eileen has a wealth of musical talent from theatre and concert performances to intimate jazz gigs. She is a versatile performer and can be seen in various venues in and around London. Among her recording credits are: “Falling” for Jive Records on their compilation album “Sugar Valone” ; Fender Rhodes, flute and backing vocals for Steve Brookstein’s no.1 selling album “Heart and Soul” ; flute on a track for up and coming artist, Susy Thomas.
Stephen Duffy - Vocalist
Stephen Duffy is a genuine improvising jazz singer who has built a significant Glasgow following due to consecutive sell-out performances at the Tron theatre and the Glasgow International Jazz festival.
He was one of the first students to participate in the Fionna Duncan Vocal Jazz Workshops and is the only vocalist to have studied at the National Jazz Institute of Scotland, where he studied under sax star, Tommy Smith. His debut album 'I Wish I'd Met You', was released in November 2004 to much acclaim. Stephen has also appeared with some of the great names in international jazz including saxophonist Scot Hamilton, singer Madeline Eastman and he counts British jazz stars Claire Martin and Sir Richard Rodney Bennett amongst his ardent supporters. Also an accomplished pianist and arranger, he has sung with most of the major Scottish big bands and with the National Youth Jazz Orchestra. A frequent contributor to BBC Radio Scotland, he has presented features on vocal jazz for BBC Radio 3 and is the Marketing Manager to the BBC Scottish Symphony Orchestra.
Quigley is one of the most versatile
musicians on the Scottish Jazz scene today. Ryan has recorded and/or
toured with the likes of: TIM GARLAND, ALLAN BERGMAN, SHARLEEN
SPITERI, BOB GELDOF, RONAN KEATING, DEL AMITRI, EDDI READER, ISOBEL
CAMPBELL, THE BAD PLUS, SALSA CELTICA, CURTIS STIGERS, THE
SCOTTISH NATIONAL JAZZ ORCHESTRA, The BBC Scottish Symphony
Orchestra, Scottish Chamber Orchestra, THE RSNO, THE RTE CONCERT
ORCHESTRA, THE IRISH NATIONAL SYMPHONY ORCHESTRA, and many others.
http://www.lornamcdonald.co.uk/ - Trombone
Alto Sax player and composer, Leah Gough-Cooper is one of the rising young stars of Scottish Jazz, and returns from her studies at the prestigious Berklee College in Boston, USA. She plays some of her own distinctive compositions, which combine catchy melody with surprising twists and loads of rhythmic excitement, with Ant Law (guitar), Kevin Glasgow (bass guitar), Calum McIntyre (d)
The Scottish Jazz Festivals
Fife Jazz Festival - New
Hamilton Jazz Festival
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