Big banding together

More jazz for the weekend.

This week’s Birmingham Jazz event takes place in the larger confines of the Barton’s Arms, which is probably as well considering the size of the band.

The Walsall Jazz Orchestra is a 19 piece big band which, unlike the vast majority of their fellows, plays contemporary rather than traditional big band music. The band plays pieces written by well known composers such as Pat Metheny, Mike Gibbs and Chick Corea, as well as a number of original compositions.

In 1975, John Hughes formed the Walsall Youth Jazz Orchestra which rapidly became one of the UK’s leading youth bands, the Arguelles brothers, Martin Shaw, Richard Iles, Nick Purnell, Duncan Mackay and Pete Cater were among the fine musicians who passed through its ranks.

In 1994 Walsall Jazz Orchestra was formed around a nucleus of former WYJO players. Since then the orchestra has produced three critically acclaimed recordings Watershed, Devil in the Detail and Little Steps and has performed throughout the UK and abroad, including the Montreux Jazz Festival and the Royal Festival Hall.

Its aim is to perform large jazz ensemble music which does not sacrifice the looseness of a small jazz group.

Walsall Jazz Orchestra
Friday 21st November 2014 19.45pm
The Bartons Arms, 144 High Street, Birmingham.
B6 4UP

Admission £12, members £10 or students £5