To celebrate being Jazz Yorkshire Club of 2012, Seven Jazz proudly present: "The Impossible Gentlemen" on Sat 23 June 2012. It will be a treat to see this perfectly balanced transatlantic band playing at such an intimate venue as Seven Arts. They are one of the most exciting and satisfying jazz collaborations for a very long time.
The Impossible Gentlemen are an unusual jazz ensemble, bridging both the Atlantic and the generations. There are 40 years between the groups oldest member, the bassist Steve Swallow, and its youngest, the pianist Gwilym Simcock.
So what kind of band are they? Inspirational, dazzling, melodically enthralling ; two of the UK’s finest musicians with two great stars of the US jazz scene. Like the best jazz groups, there is plenty of space for individual and collective improvisation. Combining the British players, the guitarist Mike Walker and Simcock, with the Americans Swallow and the powerhouse drummer Adam Nussbaum, they are an out-and-out improvising jazz group. Any thought that their instrumentation leads to sameness is banished by the sheer variety of compositions that each member has brought to the table, and by thoughtful touches that change the timbre. You will hear everything from wistful melodica to some clever low-key funk beats.
Multi award winning pianist Gwilym Simcock has been named checked as a "genius" by no less Chick Corea and has worked extensively throughout Europe with the cream of British and international jazz artists including Dave Holland, Kenny Wheeler, Lee Konitz, Bill Bruford’s Earthworks, Bob Mintzer and Bobby McFerrin. Steve Swallow is one of the leading exponent of the bass guitar and his illustrious career spans decades of playing many of the great - Paul Motian, Lee Konitz, John Scofield, Carla Bley, Chris Potter and many others. Steve and his long-time friend and rhythm section partner Adam Nussbaum have worked on many projects together. Adam's work with Michael Brecker won a Grammy in 1988. There will be a particular joy too in seeing the North's favourite jazz son, guitarist Mike Walker getting the attention and acclaim he so thoroughly deserves. Mike is now rightly regarded as one of Europe's most exciting guitarists. He has worked with George Russell's the Creative jazz Orchestra, Vince Mendoza, Anthony Braxton, Bill Frisell, Tim Berne, and Mark-Anthony Turnage.
This new project is full of inspirational improvisational playing. They will be performing new music written specially for the quartet by Gwilym, Mike Steve and Adam and from their new CD “Laughlines”.
Reviews of Impossible Gentlemen John Fordham, The Guardian 4 stars **** The band spiritedly collides the casual song-spinning of a Pat Metheny band with scorching postbop intricacies, notably from pianist Gwilym Simcock, and bursts of raw electric blues from guitarist Mike Walker. With Americans Steve Swallow (bass guitar) and Adam Nussbaum (drums) adding dynamism and vast experience, they sound even more like a world-class jazz band than on their debut a year ago. Jack Massarik, Evening Standard 5 stars ***** Crazy name, crazy group, but crazy like foxes. An OBE, please, for the anonymous producer who thought to introduce two US veterans, bassist Steve Swallow and drummer Adam Nussbaum, to a couple of Mancunian mavericks who had never worked together before. Chris Parker, London Jazz The hallmark of the band's album is the quartet's discernible enjoyment of and respect for each other's playing; this live performance, assured and relaxed yet consistently musicianly, each participant unfussily virtuosic, was simply small-group jazz at its unequivocal best.
Tickets are £20/£18 concessions. Available in advance from Seven Arts 31 Harrogate Road, Leeds LS3 3PD Tel 0113 26 26 777 /www.sevenjazz.co.uk..
Recognising who made exceptional contributions to our jazz scene in 2011-12. facebook group Jazz Yorkshire Awards.
An intensive, one-day big band workshop for young musicians aged between 12 - 18 playing Big Band jazz jazzyorkshire.org/jazzjamboree
Mentoring and professional career development for jazz musicians in the early part of their career. jazzyorkshire.org/futures
Listen to a selection of tracks recorded by musicians who have taken part in our 'Demo in a Day' scheme. jazzyorkshire.org/demo
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