For an organisation to have been bringing consistently amazing musicians to the North East for 50 years, Jazz North East remain remarkably up to the minute in their musical outlook. The forward-thinking promoters are always at the cutting edge of the jazz movement, and it’s thanks to their dedication that the region has hosted some of the biggest acts of the jazz scene.
Their live diary is rich and varied, championing everything from local duos to complex international arrangers; there’s rarely a month that goes by without a world-class musician or two stepping into a Tyneside venue. December and January are particularly bumper months, with dynamic multi-instrumentalist Inclusion Principle, playing Newcastle’s Bridge Hotel on Sunday 6th December and a Channel-hopping day of French musicians raring to go at The Lit & Phil on Sunday 24th January book-ending a couple of months of superb live events.
Chiefly exciting are performances from two Mercury-nominated acts, both wildly eclectic in their tastes. Wednesday 16th December sees Led Bib take to the Jazz Cafe’s stage, playing tracks from their highly rated new album The People In Your Neighbourhood. A must for fans of bands as diverse as Captain Beefheart and Miles Davis, their epic and often cinematic paeans to modern jazz are fine indeed. Ensuring the new year goes off with a bang, Leeds’ Roller Trio (pictured) bring their jazz rock sounds to The Bridge Hotel on Sunday 10th January, parading their dark but effortlessly melodic sounds with a catchy edge.
There’s much more to look forward to in the coming months, from a promoter who continues to break boundaries and offer jazz audiences truly world class talent.