Park SPEAKEASY items

Ben Cummings

20 Nov - Dorchester Arts Centre

World-class trumpet

 

Ben Cummings has played and recorded at top level in almost every genre from New Orleans and vintage jazz to soul, salsa and pop.  Currently touring with Caro Emerald, plus occasional appearances with Emeli Sandé, he maintains his jazz chops in the Kenny Ball Jazz Band, Miss Kiddy and the Cads, and a wide variety of other ensembles.  

The evening's theme: Jazz Age Chicago, revisiting the music of the youngsters of the day: Louis Armstrong, Bix Beiderbecke, Earl Hines, Jimmy Yancey 

BenCummings.jpg

Spats Langham

1 June - Cheap Street Church, Sherborne

Tom "Spats" Langham is arguably the UK's leading jazz entertainer.  He  has performed 1920s and ‘30s jazz all over the world, as a soloist and with top bands including The Pasadena Roof Orchestra and Chris Barber.  He is renowned as one of the world’s finest banjo and guitar players, and his superb vocals are delivered in a style reminiscent of Bing Crosby and Al Bowlly.

Spats is an entertaining raconteur and his love for vintage jazz shines out in every performance. 

Mike and Spats have duetted together on several occasions (notably whilst entertaining guests on a hotel barge floating down the River Seine). 

 

A large audience enjoyed their last appearance at this venue.  And there's a fine Steinway grand for Mike to enjoy. 

Sunset Cafe Stompers - SpeakEasy Special!

13 Feb - Dorchester Arts Centre
SCS_applause.jpg

A departure from the established SpeakEasy duet format, this special night at Dorchester will celebrate the 30th anniversary of Mike’s band, the Sunset Café Stompers, a seven-piece band plus celebrated vocalist Hamish Maxwell which contains some of the UK’s top vintage jazz musicians!  

Mike will duet with band members and you can expect the whole band to dip into their acclaimed repertoire of Jelly Roll Morton, Duke Ellington, Fats Waller, Louis Armstrong and others.

"They must be one of the best territory bands in the country" - Just Jazz magazine

Trevor Whiting

Wed 19 Feb - Dorchester Arts

Trevor is one of the most in demand reed players on the British Jazz scene.  He combines masterful, spontaneous improvisation with a rich sound that makes his lyrical playing both exciting and beautiful.  He is equally secure playing classic jazz, blues, mainstream jazz and ballads.  He is a self-taught musician who switched to the clarinet from the tenor horn on hearing the distinctive sound of Sidney Bechet as a teenager.

Trevor has toured the UK and Europe with the Chris Barber band.  He was in Clare Teal’s band and featured on her early recordings.  He also works with the Bateman Brothers band, whose recent album won the British Jazz Album of the Year award, and has enjoyed working and recording with visiting Americans including Al Casey, Art Hodes, Wild Bill Davison, Scott Hamilton, George Masso, Rande Sandke, Marty Gross, Greg Abate and Duke Heitger.

Tonight the duo will play the music of Sidney Bechet, Benny Goodman and their contemporaries.

John Maddocks, Graham Smith

7 June - Ilminster Arts Centre (re-arranged from 1 Feb)

John Maddocks is one of the most popular clarinettists on the British traditional jazz scene.  Initially inspired by New Orleans clarinettists  George Lewis and Johnny Dodds, he developed his own unique style.  His Black Bottom Stompers enjoyed huge success in London and since then he has led his south coast based Jazzmen to great acclaim.

John-Maddocks.jpg

Mike and John will be joined by the sensitive and dynamic vintage jazz drummer, Graham Smith -  affording the not-to-be missed opportunity to revisit some of the Trio recordings of one of Mike's heroes, Jelly Roll Morton 

GrahamSmith.jpg

John Maddocks, Nick Ward

15 Nov - Shelley Theatre, Boscombe

John Maddocks is one of the most popular clarinettists on the British traditional jazz scene.  Initially inspired by New Orleans clarinettists  George Lewis and Johnny Dodds, he developed his own unique style.  His Black Bottom Stompers enjoyed huge success in London and since then he has led his south coast based Jazzmen to great acclaim.

John-Maddocks.jpg

Mike and John will be joined by the UK's leading exponent of vintage jazz drumming, Nick Ward -  affording the not-to-be missed opportunity to revisit some of the Trio recordings of one of Mike's heroes, Jelly Roll Morton 

Nick-Ward.jpg

Michael McQuaid

21 Nov - Dorchester Arts Centre

Michael McQuaid is one of a younger generation of musicians enthusiastically devoted to jazz and swing from the 1920s and 30s.  He plays with remarkable energy, skill and originality. He performs on clarinet, saxophones, trumpet and even occasionally piano.  Originally from Melbourne, Australia, he has established an international reputation.

McQuaid has toured the world as a featured artist and bandleader. He has performed with the contemporary greats of 1920s and 1930s jazz – Keith Nichols, Vince Giordano, Bob Wilber, Spats Langham, Andy Schumm, Bob Barnard, Jon-Erik Kellso, Martin Litton, Bent Persson, Duke Heitger, Geoff Bull, Josh Duffee and many more.

 

‘A rare talent!’ (Kevin Jones, Australian jazz writer)

‘A first-class jazz improviser…’ (Michael Steinman, Jazz Lives, New York, US)

Mike Denham solo

Fri 8 May - Ilminster Arts Centre
MikeDenham_DS57_edited.jpg

Responding to requests for another solo performance at Ilminster, Mike will play a programme celebrating the unlikely but hugely influential role of the Rent Party in 20th century jazz piano.

The 1920s rent party was a hot bed for the development of solo piano styles including blues, stride and boogie woogie.  Hundreds of long-forgotten pianists competed for engagements (and public recognition) at these informal events.  A few of them made the big time.  Fats Waller, Earl Hines and Jimmy Yancey cut their teeth at rent parties in New York and Chicago.  

Mike will play some of their well-known solo pieces, and some more obscure (but fascinating!) items in the style of Cripple Clarence Lofton, Art Hodes and others.  It was, of course, the era of prohibition and high-profile gangsters, which will no doubt provide a wealth of material for Mike's acclaimed anecdotes!