• Review

JOHN MADDOCK’S JAZZ MEN Tues. 6th Nov 2018

On a very wet and windy evening the John Maddocks

Jazzmen warmed the jazz cellar with an evening of high

quality trad jazz in the John Maddocks unique style.

The front line was ably led by John on clarinet. Those fingers

sped over the keys at such speed it was truly amazing

how clear and honest the notes were especially in the upper

register. His musical skills transferred to the alto and

soprano sax along with some vocals. Equally talented and

versatile was Peter Wilkinson, arranger extraordinaire, on

trumpets with vocals. Peter’s singing of “I Wish’t I was in

Peoria” – “a load of nonsense” according to John – was

very apt for the external weather conditions that night!

Chris Gower played very sensitively on the trombone,

making the instrument sing!

It was good to have Simon Banks back on the keyboard

with his magical and poetic fingers. Malc Hurrell’s cuddly

toy (I believe it was a duck) was swinging from the neck

of the banjo and rested whilst he played the guitar, both

with expert musicianship. The double bass and tuba were

all but dancing when Peter McCurrie performed. Last but

not least there was the drummer – yes our own almost

resident drummer – the talented Graham Smith, who as

always played away nonchalantly and smiling as usual

never missing a cue.

So well did the group gel there really was no distinction

between the front line and rhythm section. It was so obvious

how much the band enjoyed playing together and

making the music they loved.

The numbers were many and varied many unknown

to our club, such as “Mandy Lee Blues” and “Georgia

Cakewalk”. Our imaginations were stirred with Sidney

Bechet’s “Bechet Fantasies” For the final two numbers

John Wurr on alto sax melted into the group enriching

the music even further. Now there were eight musicians as

one with no individuals. Brilliant!

The evening was full of warmth, banter

and excellent musicianship.

A good time was had by all!

Jenny Weaving

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