Wayne Shorter came to prominence in the late 1950s as a member of Art Blakey’s Jazz Messengers and since that time he was always on the crest of jazz music’s wave. A stint with Miles Davis (the great quintet) was followed by the creation of the Jazz Fusion band Weather Report and over 20 albums as collaborator or leader followed - all to great critical acclaim. Simon Allen is a critically acclaimed, award winning saxophonist, composer and educator. His life in jazz began with a stint in The National Youth Jazz Orchestra and after studying at the Royal Academy of Music in London, Simon was quickly snapped up by UK drumming legend to join his acclaimed quintet. Simon’s work as a jazz player includes work with the Laurence Cottle All Star Big band as well as numerous appearances as a guest soloists and of course work with his own quartets and quintets. In addition, he has recorded and performed with Sir Paul McCartney, Birmingham Royal Ballet, Phil Collins, Jamie Cullum, Beverly Knight and many, many more. His band for this evening will include the excellent pianist Peter Billington, bassist Paul Jefferies and top drummer Seb de Krom.
World-class jazz harpist and singer Tara interprets iconic jazz standards on classical harp and voice with sax, double bass and drums. Something brand new for Witney Jazz….Australian harpist Tara Minton arrived in London in 2011. In her teens she was already hailed as a virtuoso pianist but she transferred to harp and opera and became an internationally acclaimed player before exploring jazz and using the harp as well as her voice in this new more ‘open’ musical environment. Tara is now a full fledged player on the jazz scene, she’s also a respected jazz Podcaster and educator and she is again selling out to jazz audiences in Europe and her native Australia. We’re delighted to have her appear at Burford Jazz and she’ll be bringing along the fabulous alto saxophonist Tommaso Starace, ace drummer David Engamells and bassist Paul Jefferies will join the party!
Over his twenty-five year career, Simon Spillett has worn almost as many hats as it's possible to wear within jazz; multi-award-winning instrumentalist (BBC Jazz Awards, British Jazz Awards, Jazz Journal's Album of The Year), quartet and big band leader, recording artist, author, historian, record producer, archivist, magazine columnist, Social Media commentator and latterly blogger. However, for all these varied skills he identifies most strongly as a powerfully swinging, straight-ahead tenor saxophonist, one capable of taking the audiences who hear him on a roller-coaster ride encompassing everything from energetic bebop to heartfelt balladry. We know him well and his playing is augmented by a dry, witty humour that fills the gaps between each piece he plays. Performing with Simon will be Tom Berge, Paul Jefferies and Nick Millward.