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Thursday, August 16, 2018

Women Jazz Workshops @ the Globe

Are you a woman who plays a sax or a trumpet at home, or who sings jazz which only the cat gets to hear? Why not come to the Women’s Jazz Workshops at the Globe?

These workshops have been running, usually monthly, at the Globe for the past year or so. They are very enjoyable, sociable, sometimes challenging, and productive of good music. Our mentor is Jilly Jarman, composer and multi-intrumentalist, and the group of women enjoying the workshop include players of various saxes, flute, piano, bass guitar, and sometimes a drummer, as well as about 4 of us vocalists. I’ve been very pleased to discover the sheer range of jazz activity that women do – you don’t always realise this when you go to jazz jams where it sometimes seems that male instrumentalists predominate.

I don’t wish to get into a discussion about gender politics, all I can say is that the women at these workshops are very friendly, helpful, non-competitive, and of course talented. And we have one ingredient not found at many jam sessions – that is CAKE and sometimes FRUIT, kindly provided by ourselves on an informal basis. 

The jazz pieces are used as a starting point for understanding how the music actually works, creating riffs and group improvisations. Participants can learn by ear, or follow a chart.
We’ve tackled jazz pieces of many styles, including Stormy Weather; Willow Weep For Me; Trouble In Mind; Moon Dance; Life Is A Groove (lyrics by Sheila Jordan); Evil Ways (Santana); Coltrane’s Equinox.
We also get to sing some of Jilly’s compositions, such as Muevete, and a piece called Fascinating Days. These are exciting South African and Latin influenced tunes. There are plenty of chances to solo and improvise. As a singer I especially like doing call and response with the flute or saxes.

These workshops are due to resume in September and there is room for more women to take part. So come on, get out that sax, tune up your vocal chords, and email Sheila Herrick at the Globe: sheila.herrick@jazz.coop.    

Ann Alex

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