Music: The week in Jazz March 27 – April 2

Tony Benjamin, March 25, 2017

The redoubtable saxophonist Alan Barnes (above) should need no introduction – not least because his droll collaboration with Gilad Atzmon was a highlight of the Jazz Festival weekend – and he’s returning to the Hen & Chicken (Sunday 2) with a different foil. Scottish big band player Bruce Adams has regularly won Top Trumpet award at the British Jazz Awards for what has been described as his ‘Boppy zip’ and ‘nice dirty low-down feeling’. The pair come complete with a corking rhythm section including Dave Newton (who himself monopolises the Top Pianist category in those same awards), and Dave’s keyboard skills will also be in the spotlight at the Bristol Fringe (Wednesday 29) in his popular duo with violinist John Pearce.

Someone else who sparkled at the jazzfest was trumpeter Nick Malcolm (above), both for his contribution to the many big band events and his role in managing the very successful late-evening jam sessions in Bamalan. He’s a skilled player in almost every form of jazz but he’s always had a special commitment to free improvisation so no doubt will greatly enjoy himself as featured guest at the Bristol Fringe’s monthly free jazz session (Monday 27). There’ll be a strong improvisatory flavour (as well as some catchy grooves) at the Bebop Club (Friday 31) when it welcomes the Greg Sterland/Daan Temmink Quartet. Greg’s improvising skills on tenor sax have gained him a fine hard-bop reputation, while Daan’s fluent ambient compositional styles feature in many a soundtrack.

Some intriguing young guests come to the Future Inn (Thursday 30) in the form of Double Standards (above) – actually two duos touring together, one (David Dower & Matt Fisher) being piano and percussion, the other (Maria Chiara Argiro & Jamie Leeming) playing piano and guitar. With plaudits from both Julian Joseph and Ambrose Akinmusire to recommend them their Bristol debut should be fascinating.

From Soft Machine’s prog to the swing of Stephan Grappelli and beyond guitarist John Etheridge (above) has distinguished himself as a dazzling and stylish guitarist in jazz and classical music. He provides two of the 6 Hands for a guitar trio coming to St George’s (Friday 31), the others belonging to composer Gary Ryan and the great John Williams. Their programme features a wide range of contemporary compositions including some from Messrs Ryan and Williams themselves. And, finally, Clevedon-based pianist Sam Mills brings his trio to the Old Fish Market session on Sunday (2).

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