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Friday 11 January 2013

Gareth Williams / Dave Green
play Bill Evans £14/£12
at The Verdict, Kemptown

The Verdict, 159 Edward Street, Brighton BN2 0JB [ map ]

Gareth Williams Piano Dave Green Double bass Enzo Zirilli Drums

Gareth Williams/Dave Green

Gareth Williams / Dave Green

This promises to be a great new band to open a great new year. Dave perhaps epitomises the emergence and solidity of British jazz on the world stage. He has become the mainstay of so many major bands over the years – this is apparently his 50th year as a professional bassist, and he is as valued as ever in British jazz and beyond.

He maintains regular gigs with Alan Barnes, Henry Lowther and many others, while leading several bands himself over the years; those earlier gigs involved all the visiting US stars such as Sonny Rollins, Zoot Sims, Ben Webster and Roland Kirk; he has also played in many classic Stan Tracey line-ups.

Joining him is a modern wonder of the jazz and pop world; the latter was Gareth's role as MD and keyboardist in the crossover hit band Us3, with whom he toured worldwide. He first formed a trio in 1995, featuring Dave on bass and himself adding guitar and vocals. He has spent several years as MD, composer and arranger with Claire Martin's band; we have enjoyed him in Brighton as leader of his Power Trio, with Laurence Cottle and Ian Thomas, and as a member of Iain Ballamy's Anorak.

Tonight's band will delve into the classic territory of one of the most influential composer/pianists of the twentieth century. Joining Dave and Gareth is a visitor from the bustling Italian jazz scene; Enzo unsurprisingly first came to us with Jonathan Gee's quartet. He's still a busy performer at jazz clubs around Italy and Europe, where he's played with Steve Grossman, James Moody, George Garzone, Randy Brecker, Gary Bartz, Stefano Di Battista and many others. He is due back with Brighton Jazz Club in February with Sarah Gillespie's band, this time at Komedia.

For more information see garethwilliams.biz and Dave's bio on Trio Records.

Friday 25 January 2013

Chris Laurence Quartet £14/£12
at The Verdict, Kemptown

The Verdict, 159 Edward Street, Brighton BN2 0JB [ map ]

Chris Laurence Bass Frank Ricotti Vibraphone
John Parricelli Guitar Martin France Drums

Chris Laurence

Chris Laurence

Hot on the heels of one legendary bassist comes another; Chris is another peerless performer whose quartet is a collection of world class virtuosi. He is a first call musician for bandleaders around the world and film composers; alongside his jazz and session work, he is also an established orchestral player, having been principal double bass of the Academy of St. Martin in the Fields for many years. His playing and recording career therefore runs from Sarah Vaughan to Norma Winstone and John Surman, Andy Sheppard, Elton John and Kenny Wheeler. Recent sessions include Peter Gabriel, Adele and Susan Boyle.

Frank is another legend of many years' standing, a poll winner since his teens and an incalculably valuable player across British music. He has featured on classic albums for artists such as Joni Mitchell, and on soundtracks for Harry Potter amongst many; he composed the music and led his own band for the soundtrack to The Beiderbecke Affair, winning a BAFTA for one of the scores.

In the jazz world he's naturally worked with the cream, including Mike Gibbs, Gordon Beck and Stan Tracey. John could happily be ranked as one of the UK's finest guitar virtuosi; as with all of the band, he will have been heard enhancing the sound of many feature films. His technique encompasses a massive range of styles, and has been featured in large ensembles such as Colin Towns' Mask Orchestra to chamber jazz with Lee Konitz and Paul Motian.

A big band was, perhaps, the launch of his career, with Loose Tubes; Martin was also part of that incredible hothouse. He has gone on to a meteoric career worldwide, maintaining partnerships with other Tubes members and working with orchestras such as the London Sinfonietta and Maria Schneider's ensembles. His innovative playing also involves electronics, as heard in his own band Spin Marvel.

Chris's quartet can be heard on the recording New View.

For more information see Chris' Wikipedia page.