In the past few months I've been playing with a great North-Wales based poet Martin Daws, we've been doing gigs as a duo, where he recites the words and plays kalimba. We've been working on some new music with piano trio recently, hopefully get to record in the first half of 2012. Here's a video of us playing with a larger group in Edinburgh fringe festival in August 2011,
On December the 1st I had my ass kicked in dempseys. I was lucky enough to get a chance to play with straight ahead jazz guitar legend Dave Cliff in a quartet with Stuart Power also on guitar and Mark O'Connor on drums. We played some standards, some Wes Montgomery tunes along with other post bop classics. Dave's in his mid 60s, but sound absolutely immense, he also has a lot of funny stories from the years of being a travelling musician. It was Stuart Power who got the gig happening, a great guitar player who's based in Cardiff. If you ever get a chance to see him play, do it, he's spent a lot of time studying a lot of Lennie Tristano school and bebop language, so he sounds great over that music.
I've been really busy on some of the pit band side of stuff as well. I did the college musical and my first panto last week. The college musical was 'Merrily we roll along', old school Sondheim thing, I only did a few shows, but good experience for playing with a conductor. The panto I've been doing is Aladdin in the Swansea Grand Theatre on bass guitar, also good experience at the conductor stuff, but a lot more stressful than the musical, had to be on stand by at all times due to all the sound effects we were doing. From both these shows I've realised a few things; conductor don't like to beat on the 2 and 4 when it comes to jazz, that I'm not the greatest at following a conductor and that i should practice following conductors.
I also had my own band play a few gigs over South Wales in October, as you can see from a previous post. I hope to be writing more for this band over the holidays and try hustling for some more gigs over the new year. I've got a soundcloud page with some of the tunes we played at dempseys, it'd be great if you had a listen here.
Let's hope 2012 brings a lot of cool musical happenings!