Sheffield Jazz launch season with Jean Toussaint show

Sheffield Jazz launch their new programme of concerts later this month with a show by international saxaphone star Jean Toussaint.

Thursday, 9th January 2020, 2:42 pm
International jazz saxophone star Jean Toussaint appears at the Crucible Studio, Sheffield in January
International jazz saxophone star Jean Toussaint appears at the Crucible Studio, Sheffield in January

Vincent Keddie of Sheffield Jazz, who are jointly promoting the show with Music in the Round, said: “We can expect seriously exciting music from both Jean himself and his acclaimed pianist Andrew McCormack, who impressed so much in Jean's last Sheffield appearance.”

The Jean Toussaint Quartet appear at the Crucible Studio but the main venue for Sheffield Jazz is Crookes Social Club.

Young pianist Fergus McCreadie and his trio appear at Crookes on January 31.

Vincent said they are “one of the hottest, most exciting young bands in European jazz at the moment, his Scottish-inflected jazz winning rave reviews”.

He added: “The international flavour continues as Swedish vocalist Emilia Martensson and her band arrive at Crookes on February 7 with a fine reputation.

“A truly original artist, her personal compositions are firmly rooted in the folklore and countryside of her native Sweden.

“On February one of UK's most creative and fluent sax players, Martin Speake, plays at Crookes with a brilliant quartet, featuring Ethan Iverson (Bad Plus) on piano, Calum Gourlay on bass and Jeff Wiliams on drums.

“February closes with a visit to the University's Firth Hall where the Barry Green trio play - a welcome return after his stand-out gig a couple of years ago at the Crucible and who has played with stars such as Ian Shaw, Chris Cheek, Gerald Cleaver and Bobby Wellins.”

Sheffield-based saxophonist, composer and record producer Martin Archer brings his Anthropology octet to Crookes on March 6 to revisit the electric period of Miles Davis.

After a short break, the March 20 gig at Crookes sees the welcome return of Ant Law and his very talented guitar-led quartet, to perform music from their third album Life I Know, currently receiving five-star reviews.

To close March, on the 27th Nikki Iles brings her 18-piece orchestra, a superb big band featuring Julian Siegel, Tori Freestone, Karen Sharp and Gareth Lochrane, which will demonstrate the depth and range of her compositions.

Vincent said: "After Easter we're back at Crookes on April 17 with Trish Clowes' My Iris - thought-provoking music with driving grooves, distinctive melodies and inventive shifts in tempo.

“This is followed by the visit of Alan Barnes +11, here to celebrate his 60th birthday with a collection of tunes from 1959 - an exceptional and iconic year for jazz with Kind of Blue, Giant Steps, Mingus’ Ah Um, Thelonius Monk at Town Hall and Dave Brubeck's Time Out all likely to feature in Alan's repertoire.

“We return to Firth Hall on Thursday, April 30 when Jason Rebello brings the trio that played such a brilliant gig at the Crucible in 2017.

“Finally, our last gig of the before the summer break is Yazz Ahmed's Hafla Band at Crookes on May 8 - an eagerly-awaited return after her hugely popular gig last year and here to play her new album Polyhymnia, a celebration of female creativity.

“Expect colourful melodies resonant with the sounds and sensations of the Middle East with her sonorous trumpet lines.”

To see the full season’s line-up and book, go to www.sheffieldjazz.org.uk