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Alex Garnett has been one of the leading saxophonists in the UK and Mainland Europe for over two decades, being instantly recognized by his dark, husky sound. He can be seen at his weekly late-night residency at Ronnie Scott’s Jazz Club in Soho every Monday and Tuesday while not touring.
A ubiquitous performer with many of Europe’s leading bands from underground to pop, he’s a regular sideman of choice for many visiting American artists when touring in Europe, and has performed in over 30 countries worldwide appearing at such venues as the Blue Note, Birdland, as well as the Perugia, North Sea, Vittoria, Montreax, and Oslo Jazz Festivals to name but a few, with varied and diverse artists across the spectrum such as Sir John Dankworth, Wynton Marsalis, Pete King, Humphrey Littleton, Scott Hamilton, Van Morrison, Evan Parker and The Rolling Stones, as well as with his contemporaries Gareth Lockrane, Seamus Blake, Phil Robson, Michael Janisch, Joel Frahm, and more.
Although Alex has accumulated one of the most impressive biographies of any saxophonist in Europe of his generation, he did not release his own solo album until the age of 40 in September of 2011. Recorded in NYC at Systems Two Studios, Garnett’s debut album Serpent features drummer Willie Jones III, Anthony Wonsey on piano, and bassist Michael Janisch, while showcasing eight original compositions from the leader. The album proved to be one of the most anticipated debuts for years in the UK, winning universal acclaim by press, fans and musicians alike.
As of late Garnett can be seen at his weekly late-night residency at Ronnie Scott’s Jazz Club in Soho every Monday and Tuesday while not touring, and released his second album with his new band ‘Bunch of Five’ in January of 2015. Titled Andromeda, it features long time musical associate and fellow tenor saxophonist Tim Armacost, pianist Liam Noble, bassist Michael Janisch and drummer James Maddren.
Tonight Alex was playing with Roger Odell 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.
Simon Brown – Piano
Leading UK Jazz innovator and musical entrepreneur Simon Brown is a highly respected and popular jazz pianist who is equally known for his arranging skills. His bands include the quintet Beyond Cantaloupe featuring the music of Herbie Hancock, as well a the very popular Simon Brown Trio and Quartet. He is also a stalwart of the Jazznights Trio with Roger Odell and Bernie Hodgkins.
Bernie Hodgkins – 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.
Larraine Odell – Vocals
Larraine began her professional singing career with the group CMU with whom she recorded two albums, Larraine performed at numerous venues throughout the UK and Europe, including the Purcell Room, Royal Festival Hall. Boxford Fleece & Ronnie Scott’s
Master of Ceremonies for the evening was the erudite Gareth Williams-James
Larraine Odell opened the first set with some great songs including:
Devil May Care is the debut album by American jazz vocalist Teri Thornton
I Got Lost in His Arms, a song from the 1946 musical Annie Get Your Gun, written by Irving Berlin
Whisper Not is a composition by Benny Golson.
Misty is a jazz standard written in 1954 by the pianist Erroll Garner
Alex Garnett then joined the band to play extended version of:
Three Little Words, a popular song with music by Harry Ruby and lyrics by Bert Kalmar, published in 1930
Nat King Cole’s Beautiful Moons Ago
Lester Leaps In is a jazz standard originally recorded by Count Basie’s Kansas City Seven in 1939. The composition, credited to the group’s tenor saxophone player Lester Young
Following the Jazznights raffle of 3 jazz cd’s 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 Carol Bleiker on vocals plus Michael Mason drums playing and singing Miss Otis Regrets.
Alex Garnett then introduced his father Willie Garnett the UK jazz veteran who runs his own 17 piece big band and who has graced many jazz, rock, pop and rhythm and blues recordings.
Photograph courtesy of Gareth Williams-James
Willie Garnett stayed with Alex for the remainder of this amazing evening which included:
Bean Stew based on chord changes of Tea for Two
Just Squeeze Me (But Please Don’t Tease Me)” is a 1941 popular song composed by Duke Ellington,
Lazy Bird is a composition by John Coltrane, first appearing on his 1957 album Blue Train
Ballad medley which included Skylark an American popular song with lyrics by Johnny Mercer and music by Hoagy Carmichael, published in 1941, Darn That Dream a song with music by Jimmy Van Heusen, Polka Dots and Moonbeams also by Jimmy Van Heusen.
An amazing finale based on various 12 bar blues.
LAURA ZAKIAN (vocals) will be at Jazz Nights on Sunday 13th March 2016
Laura Zakian is a true jazz vocalist. She employs her voice as a musical instrument, improvising and moulding the melodic line to lend each lyric the best possible effect. Rather like those old style, quality torch singers, Laura Zakian sings in intimate, measured tones and puts across each song she tackles with warmth and conviction.
THE BEST IN BRITISH MODERN JAZZ is at Jazznights, The Bell Hotel. Clare, Suffolk.
Admission £10. Doors open 7.00 pm. Music 7.30 – 10.00 pm.
Reserve seating on 01787 237653 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Pay on the night.
Pictures from past gigs can also be seen HERE
For further information on future gigs go to www.jazz-nights.com