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Sunday, August 25, 2019

Ushaw Jazz Festival: Late night jam session - August 24

(Review by Russell)

It was another run of the mill jam session as three familiar faces - Messrs Edis, Grainger and Morgan - kicked things off with I'm Old Fashioned followed by Blame it on My Youth (pianist Paul Edis singing on both of them). This was to be anything but yer usual drop-by-and-have-a-blow affair.

At the end of a long day the house trio wasted no time inviting the first of the sitters-in to have a blow. This was the late night knockings of day two at the 2019 Ushaw Jazz Festival with an A-list cast queueing up at the bar. First to join the party was Birmingham Conservatoire undergraduate pianist Will Markham who wanted to take a look at Stella by Starlight. From here on in, 'til gone midnight, it was a bewildering roster of A -listers tackling the likes of It Could Happen to You and If I Should Lose You.

This 2019 edition of the Ushaw Jazz Festival late night jam session attracted and retained a sizeable audience, there for the duration. Matt Anderson (tenor), Chris Biscoe (killer alto), local hero Francis Tulip (guitar) more than holding his own, fellow Birmingham wunderkind Kai Chareunsy riding effortlessly on Russ Morgan's cymbals (our house drummer adjourning to the bar to catch up with Pete Cater) - all were up blowing, soon to be joined by the evening's star concert performer Tony Kofi to blow yet more heavy duty baritone. 

All jam sessions seem to produce a highlight among highlights and as the evening approached its end someone called Rhythm-a-ning. Now then, seemingly everyone got on board, at one point Edis, Markham and the superb Durham University undergraduate Ben Lawrence threatened to make it not a four hander but a six hander as Tulip stood his ground alongside the horns trading out front with Mr PG - that's bassist Paul Grainger - bossing it in the engine room. This was classic jam session fayre.

To close - and to give everyone a breather - Edis and Kofi played Isfahan. A memorable moment, that's for sure. Gone midnight the stand filled with every last one of the sitters-in including a belated stint from drummer Pete Cater as we went out on a blues in G. Day three - Sunday - would soon be dawning.           
Russell

Paul Edis (piano); Paul Grainger (double bass); Russ Morgan (drums) + Will Markham (piano); Matt Anderson (tenor sax); Chris Biscoe (alto sax); Francis Tulip (guitar); Tony Kofi (baritone sax); Kai Chareunsy (drums); Ben Lawrence (piano); Pete Cater (drums).

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