Friday 23rd September: Simkins, Seabrook and Thomas: “ Jazz from the Cool School”

Terry Seabrook (piano), Geoff Simkins (sax) and Nigel Thomas (bass)

The trio will again be exploring music generically described as “Cool Jazz”, a style which developed in the late 1950’s and centred around pianist Lennie Tristano and his coterie of New York musicians (Lee Konitz and Warne Marsh) but which also included the music of other luminaries such as trumpeter Miles Davis and pianist Bill Evans.

Cool Jazz is characterized by its relaxed tempos and lighter tone, in contrast to the more vivacious style of bebop, often employs formal arrangements and incorporates elements of classical music.

Some songs to be included:

Some but not all of the pieces featured will be Contrafacts.; that is new melodies written to borrowed chord sequences of pre-existing “standard” songs. This was common practice because the chord sequences were popular vehicles for improvisation, and because the harmony (the chords) is not copyright content (unlike the actual tune) jazz musicians could write a new tune to old chords and be paid royalties for doing so.

Band info:

Geoff started playing jazz in his early teens and has appeared at concerts in the UK, Europe, Scandinavia, West Africa, and the Far and Middle East. He leads his own quartet with Nikki Iles, Simon Woolf and Martin France and is a tutor at Trinity Music College and the Welsh Conservatoire

Terry studied music at Sussex and Eastman, NY, USA. In 1984 Terry began to work with US Jazz singer Joe Lee Wilson, touring Europe and the Middle East. Since 1995 he has toured widely with his Latin Jazz band Cubana Bop and more recently with his jazz sextet Milestones which plays music by and influenced by Miles Davis. He writes and teaches and has worked with the great jazz educator Jamey Aebersold.

Nigel Thomas studied classical double bass technique for three years but is mainly self-taught. He has worked with Byron Wallen Jim Mullen, Pete King, Don Weller, Toni Kofi, Ben Castle, Celtic fusion band Carmina and leads his own quintet. He also leads and sings in the Brighton Blues Corporation (BBC).

From a review by Simon Jenner: This trio excels in delicacy and the encore Softly As in a Morning Sunrise perfectly showcased their subtlety and swing, their wild calm and zesty classic balance.