An all-star quartet led by American tenor-saxist Walter Smith III opens the new Jazzhouse season at the Bonington Theatre, High Street, Arnold, on Thursday. Smith has featured in the bands of superstars Roy Haynes, Terence Blanchard, Christian McBride and Jason Moran, and was last seen in Nottingham as a member of Ambrose Akinmusire's band. Walter Smith III began playing the saxophone at the age of seven in his home town of Houston, Texas. At Houston's High School for the Performing and Visual Arts, Smith received a Clifford Brown/Stan Getz Fellowship and a full tuition scholarship to attend Berklee College of Music, graduating with a degree in Music Education. The rest of the quartet features Mathew Stevens (guitar), Michael Janisch (bass) and Jamire Williams (drums). Michael Janisch has brought a series of fantastic Anglo/US collaborations to the Bonington in the past and alongside NYC residents Jamire Williams and Mathew Stevens expect the hottest sounds from the current New York scene.
Tenor-saxist Stuart McDonald plays for Jazz At Dexter's in the Five Ways on Tuesday, accompanied by the BoHop Trio, which consists of Neil Hunter (piano), Geoff Pearson (bass) and Ian Beestin (drums). A superb stylist, McDonald's approach can be hard swinging or delicately lyrical as the occasion demands.
Nottingham Jazz Orchestra moves to a new venue in the Federation Club on Claremont Street, off Hucknall Road, and reverts to Sunday evening sessions after six months at the Beechdale. It was in the 1960s and 1970s that the Federation (then known at the Ukrainian Social Club) put modern jazz on the local map with sessions by many musicians and bands that are now regarded has jazz legends. It is now almost 50 years since Gerry Smith first formed the Nottingham Jazz Orchestra with Sunday night sessions in The Old General pub on Hyson Green. The NJO's current drummer, Les Shaw, says the band has never sounded so good and whilst playing the great classics is featuring lots of new material specially rehearsed for Sunday's opening session.
New Orleans Heat opens the Nottingham Rhythm Club 2013 programme on Thursday at Basford's Stadium Leisure Snooker Club. The lineup is: Barry Grummett (piano), Tony Peatman (banjo) and Harry Slater (bass), Gwyn Lewis (cornet), Mike Taylor (trombone), John Scantlebury (clarinet and alto) and Colin Bushell (drums). The New Year brings an increase in admission to the NRC with £8 for members and £9 for non-members.
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