Preview: Scarborough Jazz Festival




Darius Brubeck and other American stars will be appearing at the 2015 Scarborough Jazz Festival alongside new and established British acts

Darius Brubeck (pictured right), Alan Barnes, Jean Toussaint and Barry Green are just some of the star names appearing at the 2015 Scarborough Jazz Festival, which will run from 25 to 27 September. The weekend festival is due to present 17 concerts, with line-ups ranging from duos to the 26-piece Engines Orchestra.

The American musicians "add another dimension to a tremendous line-up of British talent", says festival director Mike Gordon. "It’s great to see top players from the two countries performing on stage together." Brubeck will be appearing with his quartet, featuring British saxophonist Dave O'Higgins.

Bassist and Whirlwind Records boss Michael Janisch, American but now UK-resident, will bring his new band Paradigm Shift to Scarborough. The band has an international membership, with British saxophonist Jason Yarde, French pianist Cedric Hanriot and American drummer Colin Stranahan joining Janisch. Barry Green's New York Trio features the American duo of saxophonist Chris Cheek and drummer Gerald Cleaver.

The festival programme includes some top vocal talent. The Ian Shaw Trio, with special guest Guy Barker, the Zoe Gilby Quartet and the Ben Cox Band are all booked to appear. Jazz @ Café Society, a show which promises to recreate "the thrilling world of the legendary New York nightclub", will star the nine-piece Café Society All Stars with singers Vimala Rowe and Ciyo Brown.

Tenor saxophonist Jean Toussaint (pictured left), once a member of Art Blakey's Jazz Messengers, will be presenting his Blakey Project, inspired by his time with the great drummer and bandleader. There will also be sets from Pigfoot, The Weave, Gareth Lockrane's Grooveyard Unplugged, the Phil Meadows Group and the Beats & Pieces big band.

The Jam Experiment - not a musical mash-up between Paul Weller and the Womens' Institute, but a young jazz group featuring trombonist and BBC Young Jazz Musician winner Alexander Bone - will also make an appearance. The band, inspired by Pat Metheny and Gwilym Simcock, won the 2014 Jazz North Introduces scheme, giving it the chance to perform at high profile jazz festivals in the north of England.

Perennial festival favourite Alan Barnes will compère throughout the weekend, as well as performing in a quintet with fellow saxophonist Tony Kofi and in a duo with pianist Dave Newton.

The festival takes place at Scarborough Spa. The full lineup of acts is as follows:

Barry Green's New York Trio
Beats & Pieces
Ben Cox Band
Darius Brubeck Quartet
Dave Newton + Alan Barnes
The Engines Orchestra
Gareth Lockrane's Grooveyard Unplugged
Ian Shaw & Trio with special guest Guy Barker
The Jam Experiment
Jazz @ Café Society
Jean Toussaint's Blakey Project
Michael Janisch's Paradigm Shift
Phil Meadows Group
Pigfoot
Tony Kofi + Alan Barnes Quintet
The Weave
Zoe Gilby Quartet

Weekend tickets cost £90, day tickets are £49 and session tickets vary from £15 to £37. Tickets can be booked by telephone on 01723 821888 or at the festival website.

Bruce Lindsay


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