Interplay’s International Jazz Day 2016 – ‘Brilliant’! ‘Memorably Great’! ‘A Blinder’!

Posted by on May 3, 2016

Interplay’s International Jazz Day 2016 – ‘Brilliant’! ‘Memorably Great’! ‘A Blinder’!

Superlatives are flying after Interplay’s concert with John Etheridge and Si Hayden for International Jazz Day! The event, organised by not-for-profit promotions group In The Moment, saw the Restaurant In The Park (Jephson Gardens, Leamington Spa) full to capacity with the kind of appreciative and enthusiastic crowd musicians long for. The venue itself lived up to high expectations with clean acoustics, a contemporary vibe, and fine views of the river Leam yielding to Rob Sargent’s atmospheric lighting as daylight gave way to dusk. Si Hayden’s opening set showed his unique mastery of the guitar while delivering his own compositions, that were by turns dynamic, expressive and humorous. It was no mean feat to start the evening as a solo performer, but Si did it with aplomb. John Etheridge and Interplay opened gently with Pat Metheny’s lovely tune Hermitage, and then from the following number Spanish Step, the first of several originals by Adrian, it was clear that John and the band were in exhilarating form. Adding a special flavour to the evening’s set were two Soft Machine tunes, celebrating the fact that Alan and John had both played in that epoch-making band, briefly overlapping around 1976 or so (forty years ago!). Gesolreut was a typical Mike Ratlidge up-tempo blast, while Kings and Queens by Hugh Hopper provided a contrasting sense of stately beauty. John gave a beautiful unaccompanied rendition of Goodbye Pork Pie Hat, which he introduced as his favourite tune. In another bandless spot he was joined by Dave on tabla and log drum in a spontaneous African piece that had the whole audience clapping and a few dancing too. A blistering Boogie Stop Shuffle gave everyone room to shine and produced outstanding contributions from Richard and Neil, before Si returned to the stand to exchange guitar wisdom with John over the band’s pulsating version of the Cuban classic Amor Verdadero. You can read more comments on the evening here. Les Grafton of In The Moment took some excellent photos of the night (in challenging conditions) and these are now up on our Gallery...

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Interplay Live Broadcast for Coventry Jazz Festival

Posted by on Nov 20, 2015

Interplay Live Broadcast for Coventry Jazz Festival

Interplay will be playing live on Coventry’s Radio Plus next Wednesday 25th November, to preview and promote the forthcoming Coventry Jazz Festival. The band’s set will form the climax of the evening which includes interviews and music from artists and organisers of the festival. With Interplay’s keyboard wizard Neil Hunter committed elsewhere, the band is delighted to welcome Al Gurr, one of the region’s outstanding performers, who will be more than equal to the challenge. The programme begins at 7.00pm, with Interplay’s appearance from 9.15 – 10.00pm. Radio Plus is at 101.5 FM or on line at Radio Plus The festival is organised by national jazz agency Jazz UK, (formerly known as Jazz Services), now operating from Leominster in the West Midlands. It is one of the organisation’s first forays into promotion following a period of...

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Interplay at Stratford Jazz – new photos

Posted by on Oct 16, 2015

Interplay at Stratford Jazz – new photos

We had a lovely time at Stratford Jazz this week. A warm receptive audience, and of course we were well looked after and made really welcome by Jay Riley. Jay took these really atmospheric photos in between running the desk, making announcements, selling raffle tickets and more! What a guy! Thanks Jay. See them in our...

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‘Truly exciting music embracing global influences’

Posted by on Jun 13, 2015

‘Truly exciting music embracing global influences’

These were jazz pundit Alan Musson’s words describing Interplay’s International Jazz Day gig with Claude Deppa and Three Way Split. Alan has reviewed the gig in SLAP (Supporting Local Artists and Performers), the multi-arts magazine based in Worcestershire. See the whole review here, or find it on page 29 of the June issue of...

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Swifts are back – cue the music!

Posted by on May 12, 2015

Swifts are back – cue the music!

May is eagerly awaited as the true start of summer – at least in this house – because it bring the return of the Swifts. Almost the last summer migrant birds to arrive, they animate the sky over towns and cities as well as over open country. The sight of them wheeling and darting high in the air is truly invigorating, while their screams as they swoop low around the roof-tops are an essential part of summer’s sound-scape. It was on May 5th that I saw my first swift this year, and now they are back in numbers. Amazing birds The more I understand about these birds the more amazing they appear. For example after fledging and leaving the nest a young swift may remain airborne for as long as three years before touching down to begin building a nest of its own! Feeding, drinking, sleeping, mating, all are done on the wing. ‘Sleeping’ is in fact hardly the correct term – somehow they are able to continue in flight for hours in a semi-comatose state, often at very high altitude, and well out of the range of predators. Nest-guests We live in a very old house, and have been thrilled to see swifts diving straight through a small opening into our roof-space on several occasions. We don’t know if they have bred there – there is no way for us to get up so high, let alone see inside. But we are happy to have them there, especially given that nesting sites have become much more scarce as construction methods have changed. Fortunately some house builders are beginning to recognise the importance of providing bird-friendly access to nest space in new developments, so hopefully this decline can be reversed. ‘Swift Return’ It is great to see the swifts back again, and to feel the year turning towards its summer peak. I feel a tune coming on! http://interplayjazz.co.uk/wp-content/uploads/2013/06/swift-return.mp3 If you want to hear the full track why not head over to Spotify and type in Interplay Global? You’ll be able to savour our whole album!...

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Interplay celebrates International Jazz Day – a moment to savour!

Posted by on May 1, 2015

Interplay celebrates International Jazz Day – a moment to savour!

Interplay’s gig with South African trumpet star Claude Deppa was everything that the event organisers, In The Moment, hoped it would be: well attended, well appreciated and highly enjoyable! The genteel setting of the Leamington Pump Rooms proved no obstacle to engaging the audience in music that appealed to the body and emotions in equal measure. Over 140 people turned up to share in the Leamington celebration of UNESCO’s fourth International Jazz Day, founded by Herbie Hancock in his role as UNESCO Ambassador for Intercultural Relations. Three Way Split Three Way Split began the evening with their fresh arrangements and original treatments. Their deployment of saxophone (Ian Hill), bass (Wayne Matthews) and drums (David Anderson) was both relaxed and inventive, giving each player space to stretch, while the ensemble passages were attractive and simply stated. Ian’s light, expressive singing on their re-interpretation of ‘All Blues’ was a bonus, and the audience responded with real warmth to their set. Interplay and Claude Deppa Claude Deppa hit the ground running on Interplay’s opener ‘Spanish Step’, to the crowd’s audible delight. The whole band reacted to his presence with energy and creativity that produced some very special moments.  There were many inspired individual solos, with Richard Baker in exceptional form, Neil Hunter as inventive as ever and Alan Wakeman ranging from sublime to steaming. However it was often the group improvisation that took things to a different level, from the hi-octane good times of ‘No Trouble’ to the reflective ‘Live Our Life’. Claude’s duet with Dave Balen on tabla on ‘Weightless’ was also especially memorable. Several of the tunes, which were all by Adrian Litvinoff, were being played for the first time and this may have added an extra edge to the band’s performance. Finalé The finalé was truly celebratory as Three Way Split returned to the stage. David Anderson took his place at the congas next to Dave Balen’s drums, Wayne Matthews joined Adrian Litvinoff on electric basses and Ian Hill extended the front line. The resulting performance of ‘The Shuffle’ featured exhilarating group playing from the horns, tasty duets from the percussionists and bassists and a harmonically adventurous solo keyboard excursion, before the horns returned and the band tore the place apart. It was a truly fitting end to this ‘Momentous’ event in recognition of International Jazz Day 2015, and surely raises the hope that In The Moment will return with further events in the not-too-distant future. Visit our Gallery for pictures from the...

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