Summer with Serious - a thank you and an invitation
27th Jul 2020
With sales having got off to an excellent start, Serious, the producer of the EFG London Jazz Festival, is happy to be adding some huge names to add to our festival line-up this week.
We see a rousing tribute to the life and work of Hugh Masekela, the magnificent singer Sarah-Jane Morris reworking the oeuvre of John Martyn, a welcome return to the festival for Archie Shepp, a key figure in the evolution of jazz in the modern world, and a wonderful triple-bill of Latin jazz stars in Jazz Cubano, and many more – read on for details.
British/Trinidadian poet, novelist and musician Anthony Joseph brings together an array of artists to celebrate the triumph of the Caribbean spirit. This concert features a who’s who of the British jazz, Caribbean music, and spoken word scenes including Jason Yarde, legendary calypso artists Calypso Rose and Mighty Sparrow, and rhythm poet Brother Resistance.
Prince once said that Kandace Springs ‘has a voice that could melt snow’. Since her sold out show at the EFG London Jazz Festival two years ago, when her Blue Note album Soul Eyes was released, she’s toured with Gregory Porter and recorded her second album.
‘She has that rare ability that can’t be taught – to sound like an old soul, just doing what comes naturally.’ (Guardian)
Together with the Masekela family and the Cape Town Jazz Festival, we have put together an evening to celebrate his life, featuring Hugh’s full band of musicians, a top-class brass section and a stellar cast of vocalists, all paying their love and respect to the great Bra Hugh.
Sibongile Khumalo met Hugh upon his return from exile in 1990 and he encouraged her to develop her own unique vocal style, while the great Zimbabwean singer Oliver Mtukudzi and Bra Hugh shared a deep love for their African roots and heritage and Tsepo Tshola and his seminal band Sankomota toured with Bra Hugh in the 80’s, sparking their political activism.
Bill Frisell’s Grammy-nominated project Guitar In The Space Age! is an homage to the inspirational pop of his formative years inspired by the “the birth of the Fender Telecaster guitar”. This rare solo concert uses his first ECM albums as a jumping-off point to explore his whole career as one of the world’s most adventurous guitarists.
Archie Shepp enters his eighties with sustained energy and commitment. Art Songs and Spirituals explores his legacy in dynamic style, combining with two extraordinary talents in keyboardist /singer Amina Claudine Myers, and the charismatic Carleen Anderson, leading a specially assembled vocal group - augmented by a powerful band that features the great drummer Hamid Drake.
James Taylor is one of the great British Hammond organ players of his generation and JTQ are a great live outfit celebrating 30 joyous years on the road, but this concert offers a chance to hear something brand new.
Audio Network commissioned James to record a beautifully cinematic album with orchestra at Abbey Road, and Soundtrack from Electric Black is the result, premiering at the Festival.
The EFG London Jazz Festival has seen many memorable nights featuring some of the great names in Latin jazz –and it’s today’s generation that is featured in this spectacular concert.
Arturo O’Farrill is the keeper of the flame – a brilliant pianist, composer, and bandleader whose command of the Latin jazz language is unparalleled. His father Chico was one of the great Latin jazz composers, working with Count Basie and Stan Kenton as well as Machito.
Inspirational pianist Omar Sosa and violinist Yilian Cañizares create musical fireworks in a brand new project - Sosa retaining the spiritual essence of his Cuban roots, whilst Cañizares brings an extrovert lyricism to her music. .
Quincy Jones has championed and mentored the extraordinary young pianist Alfredo Rodriguez – a charismatic and spectacular live performer, he returns to the UK following his appearance at last year’s BBC Proms.
As part of the EFG Excellence Series
This concert presents accordionist Richard Galliano at his most powerful, stripping away amplification and accompanists to give a gloriously lyrical solo recital. He was inspired by the “New Tango” of Astor Piazzolla to create his own music, which takes inspiration from jazz improvisation and ranges exuberantly from JS Bach to the glories of the French chanson
Kit Downes is critically regarded as one of the UK’s outstanding jazz talents and his ECM album ‘Obsidian’ could have only been made by an improviser of subtle sensibilities - in recent years he has been exploring the organ’s sonic possibilities and idiosyncrasies, in improvisations and compositions both melodic and textural.
An acoustic realisation of revered Norwegian soundscapers Supersilent makes its UK debut - the ethereal range of Arve Henriksen, Helge Sten (aka Deathprod), and Ståle Storløkken create a rarefied sonic world that transcends perception.
Phronesis return to their roots as a trio of immense resource and dynamism, following a hugely successful, sold-out commission with the Engines Orchestra at last year's Festival. Danish bassist Jasper Høiby, British pianist Ivo Neame and Swedish/Norwegian drummer Anton Eger move into new territory with the first London airing of music from their new Edition CD 'We Are All'.
Camilla George presents material from her second album ‘The People Could Fly’ on Ubuntu Records. Camilla has been dubbed ‘the Golden Girl of Jazz’ by the Evening Standard, and her band showcase some of London’s finest young players.
Opening for Camilla is her pianist, composer Sarah Tandy. Born and raised in West London, she has worked with Jazz Jamaica, Nu Civilisation Orchestra, Maisha, Nubya Garcia, Nerija, Binker Golding, and many more. Her debut album will be out this autumn via Jazz Re:freshed.
A sublime but monstrous hell-raiser and troubled genius, John Martyn produced a canon of music that is both breath-taking and brittle in its complex, atmospheric beauty. John Martyn's music continues to resonate many years after his passing and Sarah Jane Morris, through her own brilliant interpretive vocal talents, picks up the torch and shines a light on this great musical maverick.
Sarah Jane Morris is the British soul, jazz and R&B singer who topped the UK pop charts for a month with The Communards’ disco version of ‘Don’t Leave Me This Way’. Morris’ magnificent soul voice and emotional power has brought her a devoted audience, inspired by her belief in the power of song to change hearts and minds.
‘A voice that can excite shivers of passion and delight. Soaring, swooping, sensual and sophisticated, this voice is more than a style, it’s a force of nature.’ (Observer)
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