Wakefield Jazz is 25 years old and to make their mark in this celebratory year have commissioned pianist Jonathan Gee to write a piece of jazz in four sections entitled “Wakefield Silver”.
Founded in 1987 by Faith and Alec Sykes, Wakefield Jazz rapidly became one of the UK’s premier jazz venues. Celebrated for its warm and friendly atmosphere Wakefield Jazz is much appreciated by jazz musicians from around the world for its intimate rapport and atmosphere wonderfully demonstrated by the night Tom Cawley paused on the piano to congratulate the audience and said "Its true, you lot really do listen don't you".
Many jazz greats are warmly remembered for their performances and contributions Jamie Cullum’s whisky glass incident involving Wakefield’s renowned grand piano, Clare Teal for turning up and putting on a great performance a couple of days after she signed a million pound deal with Sony with the comment “it’s been a funny week”. The performance from Junior Mance that nearly went on all night, the stunning Christmas gig with Claire Martin and Ian Shaw what a fantastic duo - the list really is endless.
Recent years have seen the club recognised by the Parliamentary Jazz Awards as “Best Venue” and locally for its contribution to the community. In the last few years the club has broadened its booking policy and discovered a whole range of new audiences as a result. Whilst other clubs are feeling the pinch in difficult times Wakefield Jazz is looking confidently forward to the next 25 years.
The gig on Friday the 1st June 2012 has been selected to especially commemorate the 25 outstanding years. Jonathan Gee has been commissioned to write a special piece entitled “Wakefield Silver” and will be there to play it along with Tim Whitehead on saxes Arnie Somogyi bass and the wonderful Winston Clifford on drums. Chris de Saram WJ’s current promoter and MC says this band last came together in 2011 for a charity gig here, the result was electrifying and it is a terrific coup to get them back. To have them perform this very special piece will be yet another highlight for the Wakefield Jazz audience to remember.
Claire Martin “One of the most important clubs in the country with an enthusiasm and vibe that is second to none!” Julian Joseph “Wakefield Jazz is one of the great arteries that enables very bloodstream of the UK’s finest Jazz talent to thrive and flow in its natural habitat.” Gilad Atzmon “WJ is a weekly gathering of music lovers. Though the club was originally founded as a bebop/ post bebop club, along the years I’ve realised that the audience are open and tolerant to innovation. It is beauty which they seek” and our audience:- “I’ve never gone home disappointed” “…it’s the best place to be on a Friday night” “…it has good gigs, atmosphere and food” “… it’s certainly the best venue for Jazz in Yorkshire”
Entry is £12 (£11 for concessions) with doors open at 7pm. Food is available. First Set 8.30. Full details and to buy tickets online at www.wakefieldjazz.org or you can join the Wakefield Jazz group on Facebook and Twitter..
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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