April had very little in the way of live jazz on; but May looks a lot more promising. Indeed, there are more interesting gigs on this week than there were in the whole of last month, even if a couple of them are on simultaneously. Mind you, I suspect there might not be many people who want to hear both Jacqui Dankworth and the Glasgow Improvisers Orchestra.
Tuesday 1 May
Andy Park was one of the big names on the Scottish jazz scene in the 60s and 70s, running a medium-sized band which at various points included Jim Mullen, Roy Babbington, Jack Bruce and Bobby Wishart. Since then, he’s worked mainly in broadcasting and education, and tonight’s concert is the first jazz gig he’s done for a while. It will include Andy’s arrangements of pieces by Gary Burton, Steely Dan, Joe Sample and Don Pullen as well as some originals. It’s a teatime show in the City Halls Recital Room, starting at 5.30pm and costing £4.
Wednesday 2 May
The Glasgow gig in the launch tour for Euan’s new album Occurrences, which is due out on Michael Janisch’s Whirlwind Recordings label in the middle of the month and has already been getting good reviews. The Occurrences band previewed the material in the Griffin about eighteen months ago. They were very good then and will no doubt have got even better now that they’re more familiar with the pieces. It’s certainly a very fine line-up: Steve Hamilton on piano, Mark McKnight on guitar, Will Vinson on alto and soprano sax, and James Maddren on drums. I reckon this is pretty much unmissable for anyone interested in contemporary British jazz. The concert is at Stereo at 8pm. Tickets are £8 in advance or £10 on the door.
Saturday 5 May
Singer Jacqui Dankworth, accompanied by pianist Charlie Wood. City Halls Recital Room. 8pm, £14.
I, Norton. An intriguing sounding “opera in real time” by American percussionist Gino Robair. Here’s what they have to say about it:
As Norton, self proclaimed ‘Emperor of the United States’, lies dying on a rain-soaked street in San Francisco, his life flashes before his eyes.
Glasgow Improvisers Orchestra and Gino Robair recreate the last moments of Norton’s iconoclastic and eccentric life.
There will also be a group improvisation involving Robair and GIO.
The event is being held in The Glue Factory, a fairly new arts and performance space (and former adhesives company warehouse) at 22 Farnell Street, near where St George’s Road meets Garscube Road on the way up to Maryhill. It starts at 7pm and tickets are £5.