The Jazz into Doncaster voluntary committee has encountered many peaks and troughs along the way, but encouragingly has recently gathered increased momentum reflected through increasing audiences, who have been drawn to the Con Club venue by varied notable and musically skilled attractions.
Most recent of these being a special concert to bring the current season of events to a memorable close, featuring star guest trumpeter Enrico Tomasso who made the journey from his London base to join forces with The Eugene Farrar Band, a winning combination that proved a great success attracting the club’s biggest audience to date, with Enrico guaranteeing that things finished on a true high note judging by several Satchmo worthy top C’s throughout the session.
From the opening Ellington rabble rouser ‘It don’t mean a thing. If it ain’t got that swing’ Enrico’s
forceful approach instantly gelled with trombonist Eugene’s band, thrilling the responsive crowd with many more equally robust foot-tapping offerings, inter-spaced with more laid-back relaxed numbers such has Enrico’s attractive Teagarden evoking vocal rendition of ‘I got a right to sing the blues’ contrasting with his emotionally charged inventive trumpet solo.
Eugene and the boys were given their own chance to shine on an intriguing version of ‘Mood Indigo’, arranged in three quarter waltz time and their own take on the huge Kenny Ball hit ‘Midnight in Moscow’ with piano man Tom Kincaid/Andy Wallis on tenor and clarinet/Phil Kampon double bass/and Ken Hickey drums and vocals all contributing impressive eye raising solos to the proceedings, before being rejoined on stage by their special guest to bring the evening to a rousing rapturously applauded conclusion, boding well for the future of jazz in our town.
A week later, I went along with my good jazz-pal Colin Brett (of Barnby Dun) I’m ashamed to confess my first visit to Relish on East Laith Gate, to soak up the super charged joys of multi reed maestro Mark Ellis’s jazz-funk band, which in addition to Mark’s abrasive tenor-passionate alto/and soaring soprano sax excursions also featured the incredible guitar technique of Gareth Parry, (sadly due to emigrate to Canada whose mix of lightning chord and single note flurries were like Wes Montgomery on ‘speed’!! / the groove-laden keyboard work of Taz Modi/and the ceaseless rhythms of Chris Sykes on drums. My first visit certainly won’t be the last, check out Relish on Thursday evenings for great music of differing hues.
Jazz into Doncaster resumes at the Con Club on September 1, with another special with Digby Fairweather and Nicola Farnon Quartet plus Gerry Nugent and Pete Moxon on reeds. Rapidly followed by Roy Norton Jazz Band September 8, Bob Ludlum Band September 15 and Yorkshire Stompers September 25 Yes, four unmisssab;e gigs in September.
Meanwhile, don’t forget The Emmerson-Spragg Combo’s regular Monday Dates at the Con Club, the next being on July 11, plus guest vocalists Bob Quinn/Eddie Kell/Sue Fisher/John Noble often in attendance also.
Silkstone Lodge near Barnsley have New Orleans Heat July 11 Peter Franks Dixieland All stars July 18 Savannah Jazz Band July 25.