- Sage Gateshead takes a fresh look at the international jazz scene with cutting-edge festival, Gateshead Jazz
- Anton and Erin, the nation’s favourite ballroom stars
- 10cc’s Graham Gouldman presents A Heart Full of Songs
- Smoky-voiced, hard-working, far-touring chanteuse, Elles Bailey
Wednesday 18 March, 7.45pm
Smoky-voiced, hard-working, far-touring chanteuse Elles Bailey had a hell of a 2019. In March, she dropped her eagerly anticipated second album, Road I Call Home, to rave reviews.
Like its chart-topping predecessor, Road I Call Home features co-writing contributions from high-calibre collaborators, including British hit-making legend and Ivor Novello Award winner Roger Cook, Memphis and Nashville giant Bobby Wood, as well as Dan Auerbach (of Akron, Ohio powerhouses The Black Keys) on the infectious Little Piece of Heaven.
As a self-confessed ‘rolling stone’ – Elles genuinely does call ‘the road’ home. She’s continued her wide-ranging headline touring throughout the UK and Europe and was also special guest support for GRAMMY Award winner Mike Farris, Martin Harley, The Kris Barras Band and King King.
As well as being an international touring artist, playing sold out shows all over the world, Elles is a self-confessed DIY artist and If ever there was a fine example of the do it yourself nature of the music business, then Elles Bailey is it. Her work ethic, both on the road, at shows, and in front of her spreadsheets is nothing short of phenomenal.
No surprise but 2020 is full of tour dates for Miss Bailey on the road that she really does call home. When she arrives near you, don’t think twice, get there. A great evening and a long musical friendship will be waiting.
Anton & Erin: Dance Those Magical Movies
Thursday 19 March, 7.30pmAnton and Erin, the nation’s favourite ballroom stars are back with their brand-new show for 2020 as they Dance Those Magical Movies.
With sensational choreography set to music that made it big on the silver screen, expect a Hollywood red carpet premiere performance from the UK’s leading dance stars. Including musical classics from Breakfast at Tiffany’s, Singing in the Rain, Casablanca, The Wizard Of Oz, The Greatest Showman, 007, Titanic, Moulin Rouge, Top Hat, Guys & Dolls, West Side Story, Batman, Rocket Man and many more.
Thrilling live vocals from TV favourite Lance Ellington, a spectacular dance ensemble and a stunning 23-piece orchestra led by conductor Richard Balcombe complete the showstopping line up for this fabulous 2020 tour.
10cc’s Graham Gouldman – Heart Full of Songs plus Paul Canning
Thursday 19 March, 8pm
Graham’s status as one of the world’s leading songwriters was acknowledged in 2014 with his induction into the Songwriter’s Hall of Fame – an arm of America’s National Academy of Music.
That was followed in 2015 by Broadcast Music Incorporated in the US anointed him an Icon of the Industry at a special ceremony in London, where he stunned the audience with an acoustic rendition of I’m Not In Love, accompanied by Lisa Stansfield on vocals.
When Graham formed what became Heart Full of Songs six years ago, it was purely for the pleasure of playing his songs in their simplest form, acoustically.
The format became so popular that the acoustic four-piece undertook its first concert tour in April-May 2013. The band now tours across Belgium, Germany, Holland and the UK and comprises Graham, Ciaran Jeremiah, Dave Cobby and either Iain Hornal, Nick Kendal or Andy Park, depending on their various commitments.
For lovers of perfectly crafted music performed by the composer, a Heart Full of Songs concert is truly an exquisite experience.
Gateshead Jazz 2020
Friday 20 – Sunday 22 March
Sage Gateshead takes a fresh look at the international jazz scene with a cutting-edge festival premiering 20 – 22 March 2020.
Gateshead Jazz is part of a new era of jazz programming at Sage Gateshead which showcases the exciting melting pot of jazz including dance music, Afro-beat, R&B, neo-soul and electronic music from acclaimed and illustrious artists to the hottest rising stars.
Full programme: https://sagegateshead.com/seasons/gateshead-jazz-2020/
Friday 20 March, 7pm
SEED Ensemble is a Mercury Award-nominated ten-piece band led by alto saxophonist and composer Cassie Kinoshi.
The band presents a stellar line-up featuring some of London’s most up-and-coming young jazz musicians including tuba player Theon Cross (Sons of Kemet), trumpeter Sheila-Maurice-Grey (Kokoroko) and guitarist Shirley Tetteh (Maisha). Combining jazz with inner-city London, West African and Caribbean influenced groove, SEED explores a blend of genres through original compositions and improvisation. Their debut release Driftglass (Jazz Re:freshed, 2019) features the track Afronaut (feat. XANA) which won the Ivors Academy Award 2018 (formerly known as BASCA, British Composer Award) for Jazz Composition for Large Ensemble.
Supported by Music-Net. Music-Net is a partnership between producer and promoter Root Music and Inner City Music, owners and operators of historic Manchester music venue Band on the Wall, funded by Arts Council England.
Jamie Cullum SOLD OUT, RETURNS ONLY
Friday 20 March, 7.30pm
World-famous singer-songwriter and BBC Radio 2 presenter Jamie Cullum headlines Gateshead Jazz 2020 on Friday 20 March.
Jamie Cullum released his eighth studio album, Taller, in June, written and recorded at home and at the studio of his long-time friend and collaborator Troy Miller (Emeli Sande, Mark Ronson, Laura Mvula).
With a career spanning over 20 years, Jamie Cullum‘s legendary live shows have seen him perform and work alongside artists as diverse as Herbie Hancock , Pharrell Williams, Kendrick Lamar and Lang Lang, whilst the success of his major label breakthrough, Twentysomething and its follow up Catching Tales saw him nominated for a BRIT, GRAMMY and numerous other awards around the world.
In addition to his enduringly successful recording career, he has also established himself as a multi-award winning music broadcaster. He approaches all aspects of his career, as he has from the beginning, as both a fan and a student with seemingly boundless creativity and enthusiasm.
Further information: https://sagegateshead.com/whats-on/jamie-cullum/
Triptych plus Lisa Delarny
Friday 20 March, 8.30pm
As featured on BBC Radio 3 Jazz Line-Up – Paul Edis (piano/clarinet/flute) Rob Walker (drums/percussion) and Paul Susans (electric and double bass) AKA Triptych bring a diverse repertoire and extensive experience to create original music that embraces a wealth of influences and different approaches.
Their music embraces long form composition, looking beyond the more conventional structures often found in straight-ahead jazz and including unexpected sounds and grooves.
The trio has performed at Gateshead International Jazz Festival, Darlington Jazz Festival, DJazz and various venues and clubs across the north (including Wakefield Jazz, the Jazz Café Newcastle, Gosforth Civic Theatre, Hexham Jazz Club).
In 2019, the trio worked alongside artist Lisa Delarny to perform an 80 minute set of original music, including three long-form suites with visuals created live by Delarny and projected above the band in real time.
Friday 20 March, 10.15pm
GoGo Penguin have been hailed as the “Radiohead of British Jazz”, but they draw equally on rock, jazz and minimalist influences, alongside the intricacy of Aphex Twin or Four Tet to create their punchy, experimental, but always beautiful music.
Their 2014 album, v2.0, was named a Mercury Prize album of the year, alongside albums from Damon Albarn, Young Fathers and Jungle.
They released the albums Man Made Object in 2016 and A Humdrum Star in 2018. Their EP, Ocean in a Drop (Music for Film) was released in October 2019 and they are currently mixing a new album for release in 2020.
Beyond Albedo Relaxed Performance
Saturday 21 March, 11am
Leeds four-piece jazz ensemble Beyond Albedo weave dance music with improvisation, inspired by the music of the early 1960s and the 1980s. Groove-heavy and influenced by the cosmos – this is a brilliant way to delve into the world where space and jazz meet.
This performance is for people with additional needs, those who would benefit from a relaxed environment, and their friends and families. This may include those with autism or learning disabilities. This performance has been adapted in several ways, for example the lights will be up, the music will be at a lower volume and comfy seating and chill out spaces are available outside the hall. Seating is unreserved and flexible, feel free to move seats around to make yourself most comfortable. Throughout the performance the doors to the hall will be open and you are welcome to come and go as you please.
Zoe Gilby’s Family Jazz All Stars
Saturday 21 March, 12pm
An unmissable family friendly show, ideal for children to grandparents, showcasing the stunning vocals of Zoe Gilby.
In this 50-minute jazz-tastic performance, Zoe lends her captivating style to this fun-filled tribute to jazz singers past and present, sharing the stage with a line-up of highly accomplished jazz musicians.
Including songs from jazz down the years, as well as her distinctive take on popular classics, this promises to be perfect for all the family. Fun and upbeat with lots of opportunity for interaction and participation. Bring the whole clan and enjoy an energetic whistle-stop journey through jazz like no other!
Originally curated by Serious London music producers. Performances of this project include at the London Jazz Festival, Sage Gateshead International Jazz Festival, Cleethorpes Jazz Festival and Hull Jazz Festival.
Tin Men and The Telephone Family Show
Saturday 21 March, 1.30pm
Tin Men and the Telephone presents the GREATEST show – Global Relocation of Evolved Apes Towards Exoplanet Suitable for Terraformation: a new immersive multimedia performance that combines improvised music, visuals, and audience participation via a smartphone app to address the very timely topic of climate change in a uniquely interactive, fun and thought-provoking way.
Still driving a non-electric car, eating dairy or meat at every meal, taking long showers, and enjoying last-minute flights to tropical holiday destinations? Then you are the perfect candidate for this special mission: heating up a brand-new planet! Tin Men and The Telephone welcomes the audience to the GETAWAY SPACE AGENCY – Global Evacuation Transport Authority Way Ahead of You.
In the (very) near future, the climate crisis has escalated, and the time has come for humanity to leave planet Earth. A new, nearly inhabitable planet has been discovered, and the audience members are the chosen few to find themselves on board a spaceship heading towards this new home.
However, the destination is currently far too cold for human life but have no fear! This problem should be resolved soon, as humans have proven to be excellent at heating up their environment. Travelling through space, the audience must collaborate to make a plan to warm up the new home and enjoy the live in-flight entertainment by Tin Men and the Telephone along the way.
Jazz Improvisation Masterclass
Saturday 21 March, 2pm
As part of Gateshead Jazz 2020, Jamie Mackay will lead a masterclass looking at improvisation through the lens of jazz theory. Using chord charts/lead sheets (typically, a one-pager with ‘the head’ melody and chord symbols above), participants will focus on analysing the relationship between an improvised solo and chord changes – getting into how the harmonic language really works and what notes, scales and modes to use when reading chord charts.
Throughout the workshop, participants will explore a range of styles and leave the session with a working knowledge of chord progressions, improv techniques and musical ideas to suit each one. There will also be a chance to play together as a group and to muse on ideas and philosophies of improvisation.
This workshop is open to all levels and instruments, but most suited to those with a good knowledge of chords and/or able to sing/play melodies of jazz standards.
Please bring your instrument with you – all instruments are welcome.
Saturday 21 March, 3pm
We are honoured to invite a true leading light of the new generation of US jazz, Theo Croker, to the festival.
Star People Nation is trumpeter, producer, arranger, songwriter and multi-instrumentalist Croker’s most personal project yet, something he describes as an intimate exploration of “the everyday rituals of blackness” and is already garnering widespread acclaim in the UK from the likes of Gilles Peterson.
Grandson of the late venerable trumpeter Doc Cheatham, and former student of legendary jazz trumpeter Donald Byrd, Theo Croker stands firmly at the helm of a scene with many parallels to that in the UK; taught by the greats, yet unafraid to step in bold new directions.
His 2016 album, Escape Velocity, marked a watershed moment, with the Wall Street Journal extolling the album as “timeless and of-the-moment.” Since then, he’s lent his talents to the world of hip hop, acting as trumpeter, arranger and performer on rap superstar J. Cole’s platinum-certified No. 1 opus, 4 Your Eyez Only, and GRAMMY award-winning rapper Common seeking him out for his critically-acclaimed album, Black America Again.
Sarah Nicolls – 12 Years
Saturday 21 March, 5pm
Acclaimed pianist and composer Sarah Nicolls’ new Inside-Out Piano project, 12 Years, was inspired by the 2018 IPCC special report saying we have just 12 years to radically change our behaviour to save the planet.
With her striking vertical grand piano, Nicolls combines original music and recorded speech in a compelling performance. Piano melodies and textures interweave with phone calls between three fictional characters challenging each other to either worry less or do more. We hear from environmental experts, survivors escaping from a wildfire and a glacier melting, eloquent speeches from Greta Thunberg and finally the sound of hope emerging.
Sarah and Prof Hayley J Fowler invite audiences to share thoughts about 12 Years and climate change after the show, specifically to talk about what we can do.
Shri Feat: Bugge Wesseltoft, Ben Castle & Asaf Sirkis
Saturday 21 March, 7pm
A genre-bending night of new music from bass pioneer Shri and an all-star line-up of jazz accomplices Bugge Wesseltoft, Ben Castle and Asaf Sirkis.
Shri is the ultimate eclectic musician.
A pioneer of the Asian underground scene with Outcaste Records and ground-breaking electronic/trip-hop duo Badmarsh & Shri and also a BASCA British Composer Award winner, he initially trained on tablas before developing a unique style of playing his self-made fretless bass.
Composer and producer for theatre, dance and feature films, including Ang Lee’s Life of Pi; live performer at Glastonbury Festival as well as the world’s leading jazz festivals; remix artist for De la Soul, Kronos Quartet, Asha Bhosle and even Andrew Lloyd Webber.
Joining him is Bugge Wesseltoft, a musician who since the early 1990s has made an impressive, truly post-modern transition from his ECM Nordic jazz traditions. Playing and recording together with the likes of Jan Garbarek, Sidsel Endresen, Terje Rypdal and Nils Petter Molvaer to forming his own innovative New Conception of Jazz group. Wesseltoft is multi-decorated with critics’ prizes for creating a unique, fresh blend of modern jazz.
Ibibio Sound Machine plus House Gospel Choir
Saturday 21 March, 7.30pm
Saturday night is party night at Gateshead Jazz – join two of the best live bands on the scene for a night where the groove of jazz and dance music meet.
Fronted by Nigerian singer Eno Williams, Ibibio Sound Machine is a clash of African and electronic elements inspired in equal measure by the golden era of West-African funk and disco and modern post-punk and electro.
House Gospel Choir is an electrifying house meets gospel experience. They return following their storming appearance supporting Candi Staton at Sage Gateshead’s New Year’s Eve party in 2017.
From Glastonbury Festival and Latitude to performances with Labrinth on Later…with Jools Holland and the Top of the Pops New Year’s Eve Special this is a group who know how to create a vibe.
Their full live band and DJ combine with the choir — whose leaders have sessioned and toured with the likes of Grace Jones, MNEK, Scissor Sisters, Wretch 32 and Naughty Boy – to create an effortless live fusion of the biggest house and gospel tunes.
Jasper Høiby’s Planet B
Saturday 21 March, 9pm
Copenhagen-born bassist Jasper Høiby created the trio Phronesis in 2005, he which has toured extensively in Europe and North America and won a myriad of awards including Jazz Album of the Year in magazines Jazzwise and MOJO.
Høiby has become renowned the world over for his fearlessly expressive sound, charismatic stage presence and distinct compositional prowess.
This year marks the launch and release of Høiby’s new European project, Jasper Høiby’s Planet B, featuring the talents of UK saxophonist Josh Arcoleo (Native Dancer, Jeff Williams) and French drummer Marc Michel (Alfio Origlio, Gilad Hekselman).
This new adventure takes Høiby’s compositional skills into thrillingly uncharted territory, combining the dynamism and warmth of his acoustic tones with expansive soundscapes, samples of speech and atmospheres along with vertiginous loops.
Saturday 21 March, 10.15pm
There are jazz singers, then there is Judi Jackson.
A twenty-something from small-town Roanoke, Virginia, Jackson arrived in London in 2017. Her first national tour, and subsequent dates in Europe, sold out. Little wonder: alongside covers of tunes made famous by her idols – Bettie, Billie, Ella, Nina – are originals that sound like classics, many of them showcased on her 2017 EP, Blame it on My Youth.
The only daughter of academic parents who separated when she was small, aged 12 she was adopted by her best friend’s family, who encouraged her love of the creative arts. She was attending Music Lab when she met renowned trumpeter and bandleader Wynton Marsalis, telling him she planned to become an artist of note. Marsalis duly sent her a box of recordings by the greatest jazz divas ever.
At 16 she opened for Mavis Staples at the Jefferson Centre. Aged 18, at university on a scholarship, she teamed with Snarky Puppy to record her song, Only Love, for their GRAMMY-winning 2013 album, Family Dinner: Volume One. Then came a job at Jazz at Lincoln Centre in New York, and a residency in Doha, Qatar, where she met her British manager.
In London, between starring in tribute shows to Amy Winehouse and Nina Simone, and winning rave reviews in the acclaimed musical Café Society Swing, Jackson was performing original material influenced by folk, pop, R&B and neo-soul as well as jazz. Telling stories; delivering each show as if it was her last. Her 2018 album, Live in London, is a case in point: 14 tracks captured in a single vibrant swoop, aided by an 11-piece band of London’ hottest hotshots.
Jackson recently became the first artist-in-residence at the famous Savoy Hotel in The Strand and was nominated for Best Female Vocalist at the 2019 Jazz FM Awards. With a studio album in the works, the buzz is getting louder.
Get in the Band
Sunday 22 March, 10am – 5.40pm
Get in the Band is for anyone, of all ages and backgrounds, who would like to create music alongside world-class professional musicians from across the north.
No experience? No problem! All you need is a love of music and enthusiasm for taking part in the 2020 Gateshead Jazz Festival on Sunday 22 March.
Under the direction of guitarist/composer Chris Sharkey, supported by musicians Hannabiell Sanders, Yilis Suriel and Mariam Rezaei and movement specialist Nadia Iftkhar, we will create and perform an exciting and interactive piece of music in one day! No audition required and free.
Meeting at 10am on Sunday 22 March, participants will work together towards a short performance on Sage Gateshead’s Concourse at 5pm. The project is open to people who play acoustic/portable instruments, at any ability level, as well as singers or anyone who would like to have a go at singing – the most important thing is enthusiasm!
Nikki Iles Jazz Orchestra
Sunday 22 March, 12pm
Award-winning pianist and composer, Nikki Iles brings her 20 piece jazz orchestra to Sage Gateshead as part of a tour that is marking a new chapter in a long and distinguished career in British jazz, gathering together commissions from over the years, new orchestrations of her own small band tunes and new compositions, all played by the remarkable band she has assembled. The depth and range of the exhilarating writing and arranging suggest it will be less like a debut, but more like seasoned hand and a distinctive voice, with the music bought to vivid life by a top-drawer band.
Jambone & Special Guests
Sunday 22 March, 2pm
Join Jambone, Sage Gateshead’s youth jazz ensemble directed by renowned jazz pianist and composer Paul Edis, for a special Gateshead Jazz performance.
The ensemble has performed at many high-profile events and venues alongside some of the top influential jazz musicians in the country.
Jambone comprises trumpet, trombone, saxophone and flute sections locked together by piano, guitar, bass and drums. The musical mission of the band is anything but conventional, aiming to provide a range of fresh repertoire and performance challenges for its members.
In 2018, Jambone collaborated with James Brady and Issie Barratt for the Gateshead International Jazz Festival and were the support act for Soweto Kinch at the Durham Jazz Festival.
Nikki Yeoh and Zoe Rahman
Sunday 22 March, 4pm
Recognised as two of the most ground-breaking contemporary jazz composers of their generation, pianists Nikki Yeoh and Zoe Rahman will have you at the edge of your seat as they share their talents across two grand pianos. Featuring specially arranged music from their outstanding solo piano records Solo Gemini and Dreamland, this pair will challenge the boundaries of piano playing in a hugely entertaining way.
Sunday 22 March, 5.45pm
Following the acclaimed release of Do Not Be Afraid and a busy tour that took them from UK to Europe and back, including a stellar performance at Womad captured by BBC Radio 3, Vula Viel return with a new album.
The band continue their sonic explorations around the gyil, the wooden xylophone of the Dagaare from Upper West Ghana, on their brand-new set, What’s Not Enough About That.
Picking up from early 2019’s Do Not Be Afraid, the new album breaks new ground as Bex Burch (gyil), Ruth Goller (bass) and Jim Hart (drums) continue to forge their own unique fusions. While Do Not Be Afraid developed ideas around disciplined ‘rhythm wheels’, rhythm patterns in regular cycles set to the band’s angular instrumentation, the new tracks stretch out the band’s sound, at times delicate and at others moving into raw post punk soundscapes.
Extensive touring brought the band from London’s most revered alternative venues such as Café Oto and Vortex Jazz Club to the stages of Cheltenham Jazz Festival and WOMAD, the British countryside plus our mainland European dates including Moers Festival, Bezau Beatz, Willisau Jazz Festival and Artist in Focus at Music Meeting, to take the Vula Viel sound to Germany, Austria, France, Switzerland and the Netherlands in Europe for a string of packed jazz festivals – a busy year that cemented the unity of the trio and nurtured their artistic growth.
This concert is presented in partnership with Jazz North East.
Yazz Ahmed Polyhymnia
Sunday 22 March, 8pm
Yazz Ahmed is a British-Bahraini trumpet player and composer who seeks to blur the lines between jazz, electronic sound design, bringing together the sounds of her mixed heritage. Her music has been described as ‘psychedelic Arabic jazz, intoxicating and compelling’.
In recent years she has led her various ensembles in concerts around the world as well as recording and performing with Radiohead, Lee Scratch Perry, Nile Rodgers, ABC, Swing Out Sister, Joan as Police Woman, Tarek Yamani, Amel Zen and These New Puritans.
Yazz’s highly anticipated third album, Polyhymnia, was released in October and this will be a rare occasion to experience it performed live in its entirety, by a 12-piece ensemble, featuring musicians from her Hafla band, players from the album and friends.
The music is a celebration of female courage, determination and creativity and the album has had incredible reviews – this is truly a jazz star who goes from strength to strength.
Binker Golding Quartet
Sunday 22 March, 9.30pm
Binker Golding truly is the saxophonist of the moment. A key proponent of the London jazz scene, his band explores the roots of the music being celebrated so widely at present, whilst also creating something entirely new.
Stylistically, this group constitutes a departure from his more rhythm and riff-heavy collaboration with Moses Boyd as well as his avant-garde project with Elliott Galvin. A greater emphasis on harmonic and melodic development harks back to the more through-composed jazz fusion of the 80s and 90s.