The third independent Budleigh Jazz Festival was held on the weekend of Friday 19 to Sunday 21 April 2013.
Review of the Festival by Arnold Karanek, Budleigh Jazz Festival PR Officer
Friday 19th April.
A packed house in the Budleigh Public Hall gave an enthusiastic welcome to the two Devon Youth Jazz Orchestras who kicked off the Festival with an explosive start. DYJO2, the junior band was only formed in November 2012 and has musicians as young as 13. Under the direction of Trumpeter Brian Moore of Topsham they settled down quickly to tackle complicated original scores written for Buddy Rich, Dizzy Gillespie and Stan Kenton. No concessions are made for the age of the musicians and the result is they play well beyond their age and capacity.
They worked together as a team and the ensemble work was impressive. The varied programme included, Latin, Funk and Modal Jazz. DYJO 1 followed conducted by Graham Hutton and their seniority showed in their adult assurance. Musicians to watch out for in both bands. Sandy James an impressive drummer with awesome technique. Apparently plays superb golf too. Joe Carnell trombone who solidly anchored his section. Laura Worthington Trumpet who 'Nailed' the solo in 'String of Pearls'. Beth Porch with her powerful and mature voice. Ben Kerrigan Guitar, fluid and exciting. Ollie Sargent on Baritone assured and very competent. Steph Wills on piano who played repeated riff figures with a brilliant sense of timing and chose the programme. Bethan Price who sang
"Hey Big Spender" Shirley Bassey watch out! Harry Dow Tenor Sax who composed and conducted his own composition "Double Cross". It would be interesting to hear these talented young musicians in ten years time.
Parents and grandparents were there to cheer on their progeny. The bands have been invited to play at the world renowned Montreux Jazz Festival in November. Devon can truly be proud of our talented young musicians. Stars of the future!
Saturday 20th April.
The appreciative audience were treated to a sublime performance by the sextet of award winning British musicians. Because two musicians doubled on their instruments, the range of tone colours was astounding for such a small group. Bruce Adams on Trumpet, Muted Trumpet and Flugelhorn had complete mastery of his instruments and was in control of even his stratospheric notes. Alan Barnes played Clarinet, Alto Sax and Baritone Sax and his speed of invention and sensitivity are masterful. Guitarist Jim Mullen plays with his thumb and not a plectrum. The result is a warmer richer sound. His solos and backing are liberally sprinkled with quotes from famous jazz works, classical music, T.V and film themes and musicals.
Craig Milverton from Exeter was on form playing superb piano on the Kawai Grand. Tony Dealler, Festival Organiser presented Craig with a star medal for assuming the Presidency of the Festival. Al Swainger on Bass was as solid as a rock as well as soloing beautifully and Nick Millward on drums was especially impressive on his Latin Tempos which were tasteful and quietly swinging. The group together were interesting, inventive and worked as a team. It was an object lesson in the finest Jazz performance and the audience showed their approval by insisting on an encore. What a treat!
Sunday April 21st.
From the moment Clare Teal and her band opened with a lively Samba, the audience knew that this was going to be a very special evening. It was not just a singer and her group, but a fully integrated performance resulting in a real show. Grant Windsor on piano, was the Musical Director, wrote all the arrangements and sang accompaniment as well as providing finger clicking and clapping obligato when required. His piano solos were both brilliant and when needed, sensitive. Simon Little on Bass was rhythmically solid and soloed with assurance. Ben Reynolds on drums never put a foot wrong. His drum solo on a Samba was well constructed and exciting.
All the musicians worked as a perfect team and all sang as a backing group with Clare. Sitting comfortably on a stool Clare interspersed her songs with amusing and intimate anecdotes. Rarely have we seen any artiste build such an amazing rapport with an audience. She talked of her influences...Ella Fitzgerald ,Nina Simone, Anita O’Day, Sarah Vaughan, Billie Holiday, Doris Day and Dory Previn. The audience loved her stories told in her friendly Yorkshire manner. Her programme ranged from Ultra -fast Jazz, Slow ballads, Sambas and Bossa Novas.
Her energy is amazing and her mike technique impeccable. The varied programme was cleverly constructed to ensure there was not a dull moment. Her pitching and sense of swing are perfect and her diction clear and precise. "Once I had a Secret Love" was performed in Latin mode."Tea for Two" a la Anita O’Day was extremely complicated and at breakneck speed, perfect and exciting. At the end the Budleigh audience rose to their feet and demanded more, stamping and applauding.
We got two encores and "Get Happy" with multiple key changes sent the ecstatic audience home happy. Clare thoughtfully thanked Tony Dealler for organising the Festival and stressed the importance of keeping it going for the future as a showcase for artistes. The evening can only be described as a Total Triumph. One final mention, the lighting and sound for the three day Festival was done by Christian Ablett of Stage Engage. The sound balance was just right and the lighting reflected the moods of the musicians perfectly. Thank you Chris!
REGISTERED CHARITY NUMBER 1144353
SOUND & LIGHTING by STAGE ENGAGE www.stageengage.com
WEBSITE & PRINTING by SMARTWORK www.smartworksw.co.uk
Return to the top of the page