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Perhaps best known for his work as the compelling counter-voice to singer and wife, Stacey Kent, Jim Tomlinson is increasingly recognised as a distinctive saxophone voice in his own right. The release of his debut album as leader, Only Trust Your Heart (Candid 2000), was greeted with enthusiastic and universal acclaim. His follow up CD, Brazilian Sketches (2003), was named Jazz CD Of The Week by the Observer newspaper in the UK.
Jim Tomlinson did not study music formally until well into his 20s. He played saxophone and ran a band as a hobby whilst studying for his degree in Politics, Philosophy and Economics at University College, Oxford. It was only after graduating and finding himself drawn to London’s jazz scene that he enrolled at the Guildhall School Of Music in 1990. It was at the Guildhall that his musical and romantic relationship with Stacey blossomed.
Since then, Tomlinson has worked in a wide variety of groups, from Brian Ferry to experimental big band composer, Michael Garrick. His own quartet has appeared at clubs and festivals across Europe. Most recently, he has toured almost exclusively with Stacey in Europe, USA and the Far East, reserving time to perform in a quintet dedicated to the music of Lester Young with fellow saxophonist and Guildhall graduate, Mark Crooks.
When not performing, Jim shares his passion for skiing with Stacey, a sport at which they both excel. Only touring commitments in March 2006, 2007, 2008 and 2009 prevented them from racing in the Nascar US Championships for which they both qualified in consecutive seasons.
Tomlinson’s latest CD, The Lyric features Stacey Kent extensively and is the first release on his own record label, Token. The album recently hit the charts in Poland, France, Spain, Hong Kong and the UK. The Lyric also won ‘Album of the Year ‘ at the 2006 BBC Jazz Awards.
In 2007 Jim produced Stacey’s new platinum selling, Grammy-nominated Blue Note album, Breakfast On The Morning Tram, for which he also wrote four new songs with the acclaimed author, Kazuo Ishiguro. Their song, The Ice Hotel, won first prize in the jazz category of the 2007 International Song writing Competition and So Romantic was a finalist in the 2008 competition. Their most recent tours since the release of Breakfast On The Morning Tram have taken them to 27 countries. Tomlinson continues to write and arrange for Stacey, including special commissions for the BBC Big Band and work on the new French language album, Raconte-Moi projected for release in early 2010.
Jim played wit h the Jazznights Trio who were:
Roger Odell – Drums
Roger was one of the founder members and drummer with the jazz-funk group Shakatak and the forerunner band Tracks. Roger has toured internationally and recorded numerous CDs, which he continues to do on a regular basis to this day.
Peter Lemer – Piano
He studied at the Royal Academy of Music and included Tommy Rajnaand Sven Weber among his classical coaches. In 1969, he worked with the Spontaneous Music Ensemble. In the last few years, Lemer has remained a fixture of In Cahoots – he can be heard on Parallel (1996), Out Of The Blue (2001), All That (2003) and Conspiracy Theories (2006), most of which also feature his writing – as well as playing one-off gigs with old friends Steve Cook (bass) and Roger Odell (drums), recording an album with them in Israel.
Steve Cook – Double Bass
Steve has a wonderful rounded tone with great clarity. In the 1960s and 70s Steve Cook played with many leading jazz artists including Don Rendell, Art Themen, Dick Heckstall-Smith, Alan Skidmore, Pete Jacobsen, Michael Garrick and numerous others.
Bernie Hodgkins – 5 String Double Bass
Bernie grew up in a Jazz-oriented family and has toured in Europe and further afield with a wide variety of artists and honed his skills and adding to his prodigious repertoire. Spending much of his time in the recording studios, he is equally at home and in demand as an enthusiastic “live” rhythm section player
Master of Ceremonies for the evening was the erudite Gareth Williams-James
Larraine Odell opened the first set to sing:
You Stepped Out of a Dream (1940) Music by Nacio Herb Brown and Lyrics from Gus Kahn.
I’ve Got You Under My Skin (1936) with Words and Music by Cole Porter. This was a magnificent version with a new Roger Odell arrangement.
Get Out of Town is a 1938 popular song written by Cole Porter, for his musical Leave It to Me!, where it was introduced by Tamara Drasin.
Remarkably, You Don’t Know What Love Is and “I’ll Remember April,” two of the top jazz standards, were both written for Bud Abbott and Lou Costello films by Gene De Paul and Don Raye and published in 1941.
The Touch of Your Lips is a romantic ballad written by Ray Noble in 1936. The original version of the song, which has become a standard, was by Al Bowlly.
Jim Tomlinson then joined the trio to play extended versions of:
Desafinado, a Portuguese word (usually rendered into English as “Out of Tune”, or as “Off Key”), is the title of a bossa nova song composed by Antonio Carlos Jobim.
For All We Know is a popular song published in 1934. The music was written by J. Fred Coots and the lyrics by Sam M. Lewis.
Mood Indigo (1930) is a jazz composition and song, with music by Duke Ellington and Barney Bigard.
Following the Jazznights raffle of 5 jazz cd’s and a bottle of wine we had the traditional Jazznights sitting in spot which is open to all musicians who have an opportunity to play with the band. Tonight we had Geoff Harriman with his harmonica playing Luiz Bonfá’s Gentle Rain.
Jim Tomlinson then re-joined the band to play:
The Face I Love by Ray Gilbert / Carlos Pingarilho / Marcos Valle / Paulo Sérgio Valle and featured on the Samba 68 album by Marcos Valle.
This Is All I Ask is a popular song written by Gordon Jenkins. Jenkins considered this his finest composition, and he recorded it in arrangements he wrote for Nat King Cole, Harry Nilsson, Tiny Tim (musician), Tony Bennett and Frank Sinatra.
Corcovado (known in English as “Quiet Nights of Quiet Stars”) is a bossa nova song written by Antônio Carlos Jobim in 1960.
It’s a Wonderful World Composed by Harold Adamson / Jan Savitt / John Kluczko Watson / Johnny Watson and was performed by Irene Kral with the Junior Mance Trio.
Zingaro (Portrait in Black and White) composed by Antonio Carlos Jobim.
Tenderly by Walter Gross and Jack Lawrence).
Manhã de Carnaval” (“Morning of Carnival”), is the most popular song by Brazilian composer Luiz Bonfá and appeared as a principal theme in the 1959 Portuguese-language film Orfeu Negro (Black Orpheus.
What a wonderful evening of Brazilian influenced west coast jazz. It has been at least 5 years since Jim last visited jazzznights and we are sure that it will not be as long before he visits again with his cool smooth beautiful tenor sound.
ALAN BARNES (saxes & clt) will be at Jazznights, The Cock Inn, Clare on Sunday 7th June 2015.
“Alan Barnes plays music that was radical 50 years ago – hard, urban post-bop – but he infuses it with so much passion and energy you could believe it was minted on the spot, which is always part of the story with jazz”. John L. Walters – The Guardian. He has recently been touring with Paloma Faith and the Guy Barker Orchestra.
THE BEST IN BRITISH MODERN JAZZ is at Jazznights, The Cock Inn, 3, Callis Street, Clare, Suffolk, CO10 8PX
Admission £10. Doors open 7.30pm. Music 8.00-10.30pm.
Reserve seating on 01787 237653 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Pay on the night.
For further information on future gigs go to www.jazz-nights.com