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Stafford Jazz Society General Information

VENUE: White Eagle Club, Riverway, Stafford ST16 3TH

DAY: Sunday lunchtime

TIME: All concerts commence at 12.30 unless otherwise notified or indicated on the programme

CLOSE: Concerts generally conclude by 2.30pm but there are a few which go on until 3.00pm (please refer to programmes available throughout the town or contact Nick Balmforth on 07974 131797 or nickbalmforth@gmail.com

PRICE: Admission is currently £6 for members and £7 for non-members.

REFRESHMENTS: There is always an interval when raffle tickets are sold. This also provides an opportunity to select something delicious to eat from the kitchen or purchase a hot drink. There is also a bar available.

PARKING: There is adequate parking but anyone not a member of the White Eagle Club is asked to park on the left hand side of the building

November 2021 Concerts

28 November 2021 – No Concert.

21 November 2021 – Bob Dwyer’s Bix & Pieces:   Such a treat to see this London-based band again.   With leader Bob Dwyer on trombone, Paula Jackman on reeds, Mike Henry on trumpet, Hugh Crozier on piano, Marc Easener on tuba and Graham Collicott on drums the band swung into action by opening with ‘Avalon’.  Many smiling faces and feet tapping through the rest of the programme with numbers such as ‘Struttin’ with Some Barbecue’, ‘I’m Looking at the World Through Rose Coloured Glasses’, ‘West End Blues’, ‘The Original Dixieland One Step’ and ‘I Believe in Miracles’ to name but a few.   Most people in the room were sorry to hear the words “… and our last number is”.   I am sure we will see this band again soon.

14 November 2021 – Matt Palmer’s Rhythmic Reeds:  It was lovely to see Matt and his band today and to learn that Matt had recently got married.  We wished him felicitations.  Along with Matt (leader) on reeds was George Huxley also on reeds, John Penn on Piano, Brian Lawrence on string bass and Nick Ward on drums, or should we say the band’s percussionist in view of his SJS Musician of the Year Award – the only percussionist to be voted for and win.   The opening number was ‘I’ve Found a New Baby’ and included numbers such as ‘Creole Love Call’, ‘Coffee Grinder’, ‘Louisiana’, ‘It’s a Sin to Tell a Lie’, ‘Old Fashioned Love’ and ‘Weary Blues.   Not only was the music great but the band overcame adversity with problems with the sockets in the White Eagle Club and still they put on a great concert.  The only thing we missed out on was the dulcet tones of Matt Palmer.   Perhaps next time!

7 November 2021 – Steve King Big Band:  Hello and welcome to the big band.  With around 20 players there was great excitement to hear this band as it is a nine times prize winner of the annual Musicians’ Union’s Big Band Award, winning the title on two occasions.  Along with the Band was vocalist, USA’s Lynn Dawes who sang several numbers (‘Who’s Sorry Now’, ‘I’m Gonna Sit Right Down and Write Myself a Letter’, ‘Hard Hearted Hannah’ and a fantastic ‘My Baby Just Cares for Me’ to name just a few.   Throughout both halves there is commentary from leader, conductor and trumpet player Steve King, to give background to each number.   So much energy is produced by the sound of this band it’s like being plugged into the electric supply!   Some of the other numbers played by the Band were: ‘Poor Little Butterfly’, ‘Bye Bye Blackbird’,  ‘Dark Town Strutters Ball’, and ‘Chicago’ were some of the numbers and ending with ‘Rhapsody in Blue’ – just wonderful.  I am looking forward to seeing them back in Stafford again.

October 2021 Concerts

31 October 2021 – Robin Mason’s Apex Jazz & Swing Band:  The turnout was a little down – maybe changing the clocks had caught some folk out.  It was so nice to see one of our favourite bands.   There was the leader, Robin Mason, on reeds, Jon Stone on trumpet and vocals, Ron Hills on trombone, Jim Harney on drums, Bob Boucher on bass and Nick Wiltshire on keyboard.  Some of their numbers included: ‘St Louis Blues’, ‘Don’t Get Around Much Any More’, ‘Beale Street Blues’, ‘Blue Bossa’, ‘Whispering’, ‘Sweet Georgia Brown’, ‘Farewell Blues’, ‘Somebody Stole my Gal’ and ‘Stevedore Stomp’  The one that got the biggest applause was Ron Hills singing ‘Take The A Train’.   I am sure we will see them again.

24 October 2021 – Savannah Jazz Band:  Such excitement around the room as Savannah Jazz Band strike up.  With leader, John Meehan, on the drums, Roger Myerscough on reed and vocal, Chris Marney on banjo, Tony Pollitt on bass, Brian “Sam” Ellis on trombone and keyboard and Phil Lucas on trumpet they went straight into their opening number of ‘Washington & Lee Swing’.  During the course of the concert many numbers were played and to name a few we had ‘Davenport Blues’ (a trumpet solo), ‘The Lily of the Valley’, ‘Running Wild’, ‘Bourbon Street Parade’ (for the brolly parade), and one I did not know ‘I Want a Girl Just Like the Girl who married Dear Old Dad’.  The house was packed and feet tapped merrily throughout.  Roger had a few funnies up his sleeve and the whole concert was a delight.  See you again soon Savannah.

As it was the 40th anniversary of Stafford Jazz Society Maurice Blisson very kindly provided a lovely anniversary cake (see picture).  Thanks Maurice.

17 October 2021 – Dave Moorwood’s Rascals of Rhythm:  This was the Band’s first performance for Stafford Jazz Society.  The band was led by acoustic guitar and vocals, Dave Moorwood, with multi-instrumental reedsmen Mike Wills and Tony Blinowe , Mike Bennett on bass and Geoff Barwell on piano.   I now have to confess I had not heard anyone play many of their numbers, from the 20’s and 30’s, but it may be because I have really only taken an interest in jazz about twelve years ago.   Their opening number was ‘Copenhagen’, followed by – in no particular order – ‘Indian Summer’, ‘Doggin’ Around’, ‘Candy Lips’, ‘Shake It and Break It’ and ‘When’.  I think my favourite was ‘Vo-Do-Do-De-O Blues’ and yes, that was one I did know. What a lovely concert and we look forward to seeing them again.

10 October 2021 – Sheila Fawkes’ Café Orchestra:  Due to traffic problems there was a late start whilst waiting for the arrival of George Huxley and Tim McGrath.  The opening number was ‘Crazy Rhythm’.  Sadly neither Sheila Fawkes nor Terry McGrath were able to come due to health problems but Richard Leach very ably stepped in to fill the gap.  Numbers included ‘Stardust’, ‘Hello Dolly’, ‘A Day in the Life of a Fool’, ‘Way Back Home in Indiana’, ‘ Moonglow’ and ‘Beautiful Girl of My Dreams’.   Lots of smiling faces and foot tapping took place, especially when George played ‘Petit Fleur’ – always a favourite.

3 October 2021 – No Concert

September 2021 Concerts

26 September 2021 – Slide by Slide

Leader, Kevin Grenfell, played trombone and trumpet along with the occasional vocals, Richard Leach was on trombone, Simon Smith played bass, Richard Hughes on piano and last but not least David Wilkes on percussion.  The temperature in the room went up several degrees when faced with cheeky Kevin and his endless jokes.   Some of the music included ‘Give Me a Kiss to Build a Dream On’, ‘Mood Indigo’, ‘Tea for Two’ and for the brolly parade we had ‘Bourbon Street Parade’.   In addition there was ‘Strike Up The Band’ (my personal favourite with a fantastic intro by David) which left nobody sitting without tapping hands or feet, ‘The Gypsy’ and ‘It Had To Be You’, finishing with ‘Bye Bye Blackbird’.   It was so lovely to see this band once more and we hope it won’t be too long before we see them once more.

19 September 2021 – Tame Valley Stompers

It was delightful to see this vibrant band in action.   With Norman Pennington on the drums (leader), Terry Brunt once more on trombone, Roger Wimpenny on trumpet, Paul Broomhead on reeds, John Gordon on banjo and guitar and Pete Smith on bass guitar the opening number was ‘Just a Little While to Stay Here’.   This was followed, in no particular order, by well known numbers such as ‘Stevedore Stomp’, ‘Blue Bossa’ and ‘Dark Town Strutters Ball’ (and for years I had thought it was Downton Strutters Ball!!) and Savoy Blues.  Terry gave a good rendition of ‘St James Infirmary Blues’ and the band also played ‘Hiawatha Rag’ and ‘Sweet Georgia Brown’ amongst others.   The music was great, the band in good form and the audience highly delighted.

12 September 2021 – Eric Newton’s Jazz Band

How lovely to see Eric back to his old self again following his recent ill health.  This band was a delight to listen to with Eric Newton (clarinet), Terry Brunt (trombone), Pete Brown (trumpet), Mark Challinor (banjo), Jack Cotterill (drums) and Richard Vernon (bass).  They received a very warm welcome from SJS and the band opened with ‘Way Down Upon the Swanee River’.  Amongst others the programme included ‘Careless Love Blues’, ‘The Gospel Train’, ‘Lily of the Valley’ and the ‘Stevedore Stomp’.  They ended with ‘Going Home’, highly appropriate.

5 September 2021 – Mike Owen’s Celebration Jazz Band

With a name like this how could it not be first consideration for the band to kick start the season now that we can meet up again.  It was lovely to see so many people attending and the hope is that we go from strength to strength.   The band consisted of Mike Owen (leader and trombone), Tony Pipkin (trumpet), Jim Swinnerton (bass), John Irwin (banjo/guitar), Jack Cotterill (drums) and Jeff Matthews (reeds).   The music was varied and included ‘Should I Reveal Exactly How I Feel’, ‘Lily of the Valley’, ‘Linger a While’ and ‘Moose March’.   All that lovely music and Julie and Martin in Sunset Café.  Welcome back one and all.

March 2020 Concerts

15 March 2020 – New Orleans Heat:   ‘Helping to keep real jazz alive’ is this band’s motto.  The band was made up of Barry Grummett on piano (and leader), Colin Bushell on drums, Harry Slates on double bass, Dave Vickers on trombone and Richard Church on trumpet/cornet.  Additionally today there was Matt Palmer on reeds and Roger Bower on banjo.  The opening number was ‘Ding-a-Ling I Hear the Sound of the Bells’ and the session included: ‘Breeze’, ‘Algiers Strut’, Corine Corina’,’ Teasing Rag’, ‘My Blue Heaven’, ‘When Shadows Fall’, ‘Down in Jungle Town’ and ‘Willie the Weeper’.  Although the audience was smaller than usual due to current health issues New Orleans Heat was well received and by golly they played their socks off.  If we have to shut down for some time this band played us out on a high.   Hopefully we shall be seeing more of them in the future.

8 March 2020 – Max Debon’s Debonairs Little Big Band:  Band members were Max Debon (leader) on trumpet, Sarah Eastwood on clarinet and vocals, John Padfield on alto sax, Anne Holder on tenor sax, Austin Ralphson on trombone, Pete Wilson on keyboard, Peter ‘Pedro’ Robinson on bass and Rob Turner on drums.   They kicked off with ‘One O’clock Jump’ and some of their other numbers included: ‘A Tisket a Tasket’, ‘My Sweet Embraceable You’, ‘Blues in the Night’, ‘Petit Fleur’, ‘Diamonds are a Girl’s Best Friend’ and ‘Let’s Face the Music and Dance.   We were in for a rare treat as Sarah has a lovely voice and treated us to some great numbers.  For such a little lady she has a real big voice.  

1 March 2020 – The Pedigree Jazz Band ‘Salute to Trad Jazz’:  This was a fitting concert with which to remember SJS’s late, blind benefactor Clive Weatherer MBE.  The band were oh so smart in their outfits, so professional.   Chris Walker (Jeremy Corbyn look-alike and leader) on clarinet, Tony Mann on trombone, Andy Chislett on trumpet, Sy Gorelick on drums and Mike Bennett on double bass.  Their usual banjo player, John Noddings was at his daughter’s wedding and so we had the pleasure of the company of Howard Williams on banjo.  Playing hits of the Ball, Bilk and Barber era the numbers included: ‘Good Night Sweet Prince’, ‘The Creole Love Song’, ‘The Old Ragged Cross’, ‘The Livery Stable Blues’, ‘You Know What it Means to Miss New Orleans’, ‘Teddybear’s Picnic’ and of course the iconic ‘Midnight in Moscow’.  And not only was the music a delight but we learnt that ‘You Are My Sunshine’ is the State song of Louisiana … who knew that!

January 2020 Concerts

Frog & Henry Brass & String – 26 January:  What a treat to get another band composed of younger musicians.  The big draw was Dave Neigh, who plays the world’s only foot operated tuba whilst playing a 6-string banjo but he had fierce competition from FG Henry on guitar, Ewan Bleach on Reeds and piano, Kenmare Anker on violin and Laurin Habert on reeds.  Surprisingly for a band of only five they come from four nations:  Canada, Germany, UK and USA.  The harmonies were good and it was nostalgia at its best.  The opening number was “Cushion Boot Stomp” and other numbers included “In My Little Red Book”,  “Imagination”, “I Ain’t Got No Body”, “Sweet Sue”, “Just Another Memory” “Dance Hall Shuffle” to name some and ending with “Bouncing Around”.  There was a dreamlike quality about the concert that took many back to a different time.  I am sure we shall see them again.

Jake Leg Jug Band – 19 January:  In addition to the five members of the band Mike Pemberton joined them with his trombone. Duncan Wilcox (leader) was on double bass, Liam Ward on harmonica and jug, Toby Wilson on Banjo, Neil Hulse on guitar and Bryony Rose on Washboard and vocals.  They opened with “I Don’t Dance I’ve Got Ants in my Pants”.  Other numbers included “Champagne Charlie”, “She’s on the Road Again”, “Little Black Train”, “Your Feet’s too Big”, “My Handiman”, “I’ve got Nuts for Sale”, “Sugar in my Bowl”, “He’s in the Jailhouse Now” and “My Pencil Won’t Write No More”.  There was plenty of good humour and all of the musicians give vocal.  They were well received and I think the band enjoyed it as much as the audience.

New Orleans Hotshots – 12 January:  It was some 14 years since SJS had a visit from the New Orleans Hotshot.  Today, with only one remaining from the original band – Dave Harmer – this reformed band made another visit.  New members of the band are:  Ivan Huke (cornet), Kelvin Smith (clarinet), Al Harris (bass and vocals), Keith Chaplin (drums) and Joe Nutman (piano).  Some of the tunes in this appearance were: ‘Working Man Blues’, ‘Yes Sir that’s my Baby’, ‘Bad Loser Strut’, a really lovely spiritual ‘Hush, Hush, Somebody is Calling my Name’, ‘Magnetic Rag’, ‘Petit Fleur’ and ‘Clarinet Marmalade’.  I am sure the White Eagle Club will echo to their talented music making again in the near future.

Chris Pearce’s & Andy Leggett’s Sopranos – 5 January 2020:  Members of the band consisted of Chris Pearce and Andy Leggett on reeds, Dave Deakin on trombone, Rachel Hayward on banjo and guitar, Tony Sharp on bass and Dave Andrews on drums.  They started with ‘There’s a Blue Ridge Round my Heart’ and included ‘Cake Walking Babies from Home’, ‘The World is Waiting for the Sunrise’, ‘Creole Love Call’, ‘The Buddy Bolden Stomp’ and ‘Texas Moaner’ to name but a few.  As always the music was lovely and I noted many jigging feet and nodding heads.  Their swinging jazz is always welcomed and their sense of humour appreciated.  Come back soon.

November 2019 Concerts

24 November – Alex Clarke Hot Five featuring Jamie Brownfield:  This band comprises five musicians, all talented and accomplished, with Alex Clarke on reeds (also the leader), Jamie Brownfield on trumpet, Tom Kincaid on keyboard, Jack Cotterill on drums and Richard Vernon on bass.  Songs included:  ‘Sweet Georgia Brown’, ‘All of Me’, ‘I’ve Got Rhythm’, ‘Teach Me Tonight’, ‘Pennies from Heaven’, ‘Give me a Kiss to Build a Dream on’ and ‘When You’re Smiling’.  Delightful to listen to.  Hope to see them on an SJS programme again in the not too distant future.

17 November – Chicago Teddy Bears Society Jazzband:  This was the John Moore Tribute Concert, our Chairman for many years.  The Teddybears are currently our Band of the Year for the fourth time – the only band to receive this award so many times.   The band consisted of Jamie Brownfields on trumpet, Rae Owens on double bass & tuba, Brian Singleton on drums, John Padfield on reeds, James Lucas on trumpet, Andy Mackenzie on trombone and Ed Lee on piano.  Sadly I missed this band as I was away that weekend but everyone has told me how well they played and how warmly SJS welcomed them.

10 November – Bob Dwyer’s Bix & Pieces:  This band presented a mix of traditional style jazz and, as its name suggests influenced by the legendary Bix Beiderbeck.  Bob Dwyer (leader) on trombone with Paula Jackman on reeds, Tony Mowell on trumpet, Hugh Crozier on piano and vocals, John Siret on double bass and bass sax and Graham Collicott on drums.   Amongst the numbers were: ‘Davenport Blues’, ‘Oh Look at Them, Ain’t she Pretty’, ‘Bourbon Street Parade’, ‘Alligator Rag’, ‘A Hundred Years from today’, ‘Putting on the Ritz’,  ‘Caledonia’ and ‘So do I’.  I am sure we will be seeing them again.

3 November – S & G Band:  this band seemed able to recreate a sound belonging to an earlier era and it was delicious.  George Huxley on reeds (leader), Mark Johnson on string bass and sousaphone, Tim McGrath on banjo and guitar, Andy Peat on trumpet & flugelhorn, Terry McGrath on trombone and reeds and Sheila Fawkes the vocalist.  Some numbers were:  ‘I’m a Little Blackbird’, ‘The Folk Who Live on the Hill’, ‘Blue Moon’, ‘Talk of the Town’, Petite Fleur’, ‘Hey Big Boy’, ‘Zing Went the Strings of my Heart’, ‘Dans La Rue Entibe’ and ‘Dancing Cheek to Cheek’.  This band made its SJS debut last April and this time we knew we were in for a good concert.

October 2019 Concerts

27 October – Merseysippi Jazz Band

20 October – Baby Jools & the Jazzaholics:  This group were playing today to celebrate SJS 38th Anniversary Concert.  The band consisted of Baby Jools on drums (leader), Jim Swinnerton on bass, Brian Mellor on banjo, Mike Owen on trombone, Danny Illet on trumpet and Karl Hird on reeds.   This band are simply superb with music including:  ‘Girl of My Dreams’, ‘Old Man Moses’ (my favourite of the day), ‘Mama’s Gone to Buy’, ‘Since I laid my Burden Down’, ‘Petite Fleur’, ‘Those were the Days’ and ‘When My Dreamboat comes Home.  Feet were tapping and everyone left with smiles on their faces.   What a great gig.

13 October – No Concert

6 October – Wabash Jazzmen:  A highly entertaining band with a distinctive rhythmic style influenced by early Ken Colyer and Chris Barber bands.  Playing today were Mark Challinor (leader) on banjo/guitar/ukulele, Richard Vernon on string bass, Mike Pemberton on trombone, Bill Smith on cornet and harmonica and Matt Palmer, standing in for Mike Hayler currently sick, playing the reeds.  Their opening number was ‘Curse of an Aching Heart’.  Some of the other numbers played during this gig were: ‘Savoy Blues’, ‘I’m Doing Nothing’, ‘Blue turning Grey over You’, ‘Fidgetty Feet’, ‘You Meet the Nicest People in Your Dreams’ and ‘East Coast Trot’.  Also played, a number first recorded by the Band twenty five years ago, was ‘The Fat Cat on a Fence’.  They finished up with ‘TheWolverine Blues’.  I don’t need to say it but I will, the Band were very well received as they are popular with Stafford Jazz Society and their programme and music is great.  Look forward to next time.

September 2019 Concerts

Kevin Grenfell’s Jazz Giants – 29 September 2019:  What can I say – simply one of my favourite bands.  Kevin (lead) on trombone and trumpet, Jeremy Huggett on reeds, Richard Hughes on piano, Simon Smith on bass and Jack Cotterill on drums gave us a smashing performance of music and comedy.  Some of the numbers included:  “Running Wild”, “Algiers Strut”, “Tikka Masala”, “Girl of My Dreams”, “There Ain’t Nobody  Here But Us Chickens”, “China Town My Chinatown” through to their finishing number of “Bye Bye Blackbird” received some pretty high scores and drew a strong audience.

Robin Mason’s Apex Jazz & Swing Band – 22 September 2019:  Since its formation some twenty years ago this band always gives a polished performance.  Robin Mason (leader) on reeds, Jon Stone on trumpet, Ron Hills on trombone, Jim Harney on drums, Bob Boucher on bass and Nick Wiltshire on piano brought joy to Stafford.  Unfortunately there is no picture since I was in London that weekend so cannot report personally.  However I can say that everyone I spoke to said it was a good concert, something we have come to expect from Robin and his merry men.

Manchester Jazz – 15 September 2019:  The lead is Louis Lince on banjo, with Allan Dent on trumpet, Derek Galloway on trombone, Chris Pendlebury on drums, Roger Browne on piano, Allan Wilcox on bass and Eric Newton on clarinet.  The music ranged from “Stevedore Stomp”, through “Jambalaya” and “Louisiana Fairytale” to “Lady be Good” and “It’s a Sin to Tell a Lie”. The band finished with “Sweet Georgia Brown” and looking around the room I could see that this band was well received by Stafford jazzers.

Mat Palmer’s Eagle Jazzband – 8 September 2019:  It was lovely to see this band again.   We had Dave Morwood in place of Brian Mellor, who is poorly – speedy recovery from SJS – on banjo/guitar and vocals, Matt Palmer on reeds, Pete Brown on trumpet, Terry Williams on trombone, Brian Lawrence on double bass and Tim Jones on drums.  I will say at the outset I thought Tim’s drumming was very good indeed.  People think it’s quite easy to beat out a solo piece but that’s not the case.  However Tim produced several really fine pieces which I think the whole room appreciated.  Numbers included: ‘Algiers Strut’, ‘Travelling Loose’, ‘Mama’s Gone – Goodbye’, ‘Bugle Boy March’, ‘High Society’, ‘Everywhere You Go the Sunshine Follows You’, ‘Poor Butterfly’ and ‘Cakewalking Babies’ – to name but a few.  Look forward to their next visit.

Mike Owen’s Storyville Six – 1 September 2019:  This is the first concert after the summer break, and what a concert.  Mike Owen had been selected as SJS Musician of the Year and so was presented with his trophies.  This time his family took centre stage for the presentation and all three girls and his mother presented him his various trophies.  The band was at its best and for those starved of jazz for the last three months it was delicious to hear the blues, the struts and the Dixieland-style music we had been missing.   Some of the pieces included: ‘You Can’t Escape from Me’, ‘Hey What’s the Matter Now’, ‘Four or Five Times’, ‘Take it Easy Greasy’, ‘Give It Up’, ‘Get out of Here’ and ‘The Wabash Blues’.  What a way to start a season.

May 2019 Concerts

Well that’s all folks but join us again on 1stSeptember when we will be listening to Mike Owen’s Storyville Six. The full programme will be posted on the website once it is all done and dusted but I know that there will be a concert on each Sunday through September.

Tame Valley Stompers (Terry’s Dead Good Boys) – 26 May:  The one we hoped would not come yet but it has – the final concert of the season.  The band consisted, as always, of Terry Brunt on trombone, Roger Wimpenny on Trumpet, Paul Broomhead on reeds, Peter Smith on bass guitar, John Gordon on banjo and guitar with leader, Norman Pennington on drums.   Their opening number was a favourite, “Original Dixieland One Step” along with “Kansas City Kiss”, “The Martinique”, “Over in Glory Land”, “When Somebody Thinks You’re Wonderful”, “Swing that Music”, and an interesting combination of Canal Street Blues and Route 66.   

Original Panama Jazz Band – 19 May:  Here we are already at the penultimate concert of the season but what a way to go. Leader, Jon Critchley, on trumpet, Laurie Cooper on trombone, Dave Thomas on clarinet and vocals, Malcolm Hogarth on piano, Isabel Toner on double bass and Bill Buck on drums gave us a concert to remember.  Some of the numbers were:  “You Meet the Nicest People in Your Dreams”, “Night Ferry”, “Midnight in Muscow”, “I’m Crazy About my Baby”, “I Used to Love You but it’s all Over Now”, “Bad Penny Blues” and “Some Day You’ll be Sorry”.   It was good to see the piano being used again.

Savannah Jazz Band – 12 May:  The second concert with Stafford Music Festival, this band is celebrating its fortieth anniversary this year.  Now that really is something.  In the band is John Meehan (leader) on drums, Bill Smith on cornet and harmonica, Brian Ellis on trombone and keyboard, Roger Myserscough on reeds, Chris Marney on banjo and Tony P9ollitt on bass.  Music and laughter throughout the whole extended concert.  Some of the numbers:  “See See Rider”, “Blame it on the Blues”, “A Hymn to Freedom”, “Look Down that Lonesome Road”, “While we danced at the Mardi Grass”, “Running Wild” and “Buddy Balden’s Blues”.  A lot of smiling faces left the building at the end of such a lovely show.

Pedigree Jazz Band – 5 May:  The first of two concerts with the Stafford Music Festival, this band is well known to Stafford and was made very welcome.  The Band consists of Chris Walker (leader) on reeds, Andy Chislett on trumpet, Tony Mann on trombone, John Noddings on banjo and guitar, Mike Bennett on double bass and Sy Gorelick on drums.  This was a longer concert than usual and the music had everyone bopping in their seats.  Some of the numbers were:  “In a Persian Market”, “Dixieland One Step”, “Livery Stable Blues” (which included cock crows, lowing cows and neighing horses .. on the instruments not impressions!), “The Martinique”, “Peter and the Wolf”, “Strutting with some Barbecue”, “Whistling Rufus”, “Tansy” and “You Gotta see your baby tonight or you won’t see Baby at All”.  I am sure we all look forward to 2020 and the next visit from this professional band with their Salute to Trad Jazz.