A tale of two Chrises in this week’s gigs

Chris 1: Gumbley

Chris 1: Gumbley

There’s a bright and shiny, West Coast feel to this week’s Jazzlines Free Jazz session at the Symphony Hall cafe bar tomorrow after work, and that should suit the weather.

The band is the Chris Gumbley Quintet and their chosen guru is the larger-than-life alto saxophonist Julian “Cannonball” Adderley.

Julian has a special place in Birmingham jazz history because in the 1980s the place to go was a club in Adderley Street called – yep, you guessed it – The Cannonball.

Did Chris play there? I’m sure he must have.

The usual line-up is Chris on alto, Neil Yates on piano, either Dan Nicholls or Leon Greening on piano, Tom Hill on bass and Carl Hemmingsley on drums.

The music starts at 5pm, and entry is free. More at www.thsh.co.uk

From there head out to the Ort Cafe in Balsall Heath for a terrific quartet led by BBC Scotland Young Jazz Musician of 2010 and Birmingham Conservatoire graduate John Fleming.

With John on tenor saxophone you can hear pianist Andy Bunting, double bassist Nick Jurd and drummer Jonathan Silk – the cream of the young Birmingham scene, then, with some highly attractive original material in this ultra-intimate and relaxed room.

Entry is £5/£3 on the door and it all gets going some time after 8.30pm.

For more information, go to www.johnflemingmusic.com, www.ortcafe.co.uk and www.blambirmingham.co.uk

And before all that, there are two strong choices for this evening:

Chris 2: Mapp

Chris 2: Mapp

Bassist Chris Mapp launches his latest project, an acoustic/electronic improv ensemble called Gonimoblast, for SOUNDKitchen at The Bull’s Head in Moseley at 8pm.

With Chris are Leafcutter John (best known for his work with Polar Bear) on electronics, Aaron Diaz on trumpet, Dan Nichols on keyboards and Mark Sanders on drums.

For more about the band go to this earlier post. And there is more at http://soundkitchen.org

Trumpeter Steve Fishwick is at The Yardbird with his band who are touring at present. It starts after 8.30pm and entry is free.

Finally, if you know any teenagers with an interest in learning more about how to play jazz – no, I don’t expect the kids themselves to be reading thejazzbreakfast – please alert them to the second Jazzlines Summer School, which is being held from August 19 to 23.

They will be given guidance and tuition in jazz performance, composition and ensemble playing by an ace group of music and education professionals including trumpeter Percy Pursglove, singer Sara Colman, and members of the Jazzlines Trio.

There will be daily workshops and it will all culminate in a performance in the Symphony Hall cafe bar at the end of the week.

Take part and these young people will always be able to say: “Symphony Hall? Yeah, I’ve played Symphony Hall.”

To find out how to apply – and applications close on Monday, July 22 – go here.


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