Preview: Brighton Alternative Jazz Festival

Brighton Alternative Jazz Festival debuts this September, offering something different from mainstream festivals that promise jazz but fail to deliver 

The Brighton Alternative Jazz Festival, directed by jazz journalist Daniel Spicer, comes to the Old Market in Hove, on Friday 11 September and Saturday 12 September. The festival - describing itself as "the alternative to mainstream, commercial festivals that promise jazz but deliver watered down soul, pop funk and R'n'B" - features a line-up of top international artists from the "deep jazz" scene.

The festival takes place at the Old Market, described as "an intimate venue by the sea".  Festival organisers have two specific aims which they hope to achieve. Firstly, to encourage specially commissioned collaborations - this year it's an Anglo-Canadian collaboration between saxophonist Nat Birchall (pictured right by Bruce Lindsay) and drummer Franklin Kiermyer. Secondly, it seeks to "redress the gender imbalance present in too many jazz festivals, by inviting key women in avant-jazz to perform."

The festival has been awarded startup funds by Arts Council England but also needs to raise additional money. It's doing this through a crowdfunding campaign on IndieGoGo, inviting jazz fans to contribute in exchange for a range of perks including VIP seating and signed merchandise. Contributions can be made via the festival IndieGoGo page.

The debut Brighton Alternative Jazz Festival features the following acts:

Sarah Gail Brand Sextet - the trombonist (pictured left by Tony Wagstaff) will be joined by pianist Liam Noble and drummer Mark Sanders

William Parker/Hamid Drake/John Dikema

Kiermyer-Birchall Transcension - this year's special commission

Woven Entity and Julie Kjae

Mette Rasmussen & Steve Noble

Rachel Musson/Neil Charles/Corey Mwamba/Mark Sanders

West Hill Blast Quartet - a Brighton band featuring festival director Daniel Spicer with special guest, cellist Verity Spott

Yana - drummer Josh Blackmore, bassist Dave Kane and vibraphonist Corey Mwamba

The Friday session runs from 7.00pm to 11.00pm: the Saturday session runs from 4.00pm to 11.00 pm.

Weekend tickets cost £30.00: Friday tickets are £15.00 and Saturday tickets cost £20.00. For further information and ticket bookings go to the festival website.

Bruce Lindsay

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