Big Band Scene (Jan. 2016)

Saxophonist Patrick Billingham continues his monthly

column with a roundup of the big bands that will be performing across Sussex in 2016.

 

    Happy New Year.  Now’s the time to make a list of resolutions. Or not, as the case may be.  If I were to make a list, I suppose it might include to improve my playing by practising more.  Or to improve my sight reading by practising even less.

    As mentioned last month, band leader Alex Bondonno, alex@bigbandjazz.co.uk, has set up the Big Band @Brunswick slot on the first Sunday of each month, starting on January 3rd.  Doors open 7:30 pm, music from 8 – 10. Free entry with collection. Among the bands booked for the first half of 2016 are Alex’s band, Straight No Chaser, Terry Pack’s Trees, The Studio 9 Orchestra and The Paul Busby Bigger Band.

    I apologise for not fulfilling my promise of another band profile for this month, but other things got in the way.  I had downloaded a chart for a seasonal special gig.  When I printed it out, I found some parts missing and others incomplete. So at very short notice I found myself with the time consuming task of writing, and preparing for printing, half a dozen parts.  At least that’s my excuse.

    So instead, here is a list, not of further resolutions, but of the Sussex based big bands, with websites, of which I am aware. Also some logos. Some of these bands have been mentioned already in this current column, others in the gig list.  Some have been profiled in previous columns, others not yet.  

First of all, the bands with the conventional line-up of saxes, trumpets, trombones and rhythm sections.

Big Band Sounds                                

JL Dance & Swing Band,

www.jldanceandswing.com,

www.facebook.com/pages/JL-Dance-And-Swing

Phoenix Big Band

www.phoenix-bigband.co.uk

Sounds of Swing    

www.soundsofswingbigband.moonfruit.com/

Straight No Chaser

www.bigbandjazz.co.uk

The Brighton Big Band    

brightonbigband.blogspot.co.uk

www.facebook.com/The-Brighton-Big-Band

The Fred Woods Big Band

www.facebook.com/fredwoodsbigband

The Horsham RBL Legionnaires Big Band

The Johnny Spice Swing Orchestra                                            

www.facebook.com/JohnnySpiceSwingOrchestra     

The Les Paul Big Band    

www.lespaulbigband.co.uk

The Maestro Academy Players    

www.facebook.com/pages/Maestro-Academy-Players    

The Paul Busby Bigger Band    

www.scoredchanges.com        

The Ron Green Big Band

The Ronnie Smith Big Band

The Simon Bates Big Band

The South Coast Big Band

www.southcoastbigband.co.uk

www.facebook.com/southcoasttbigband                    

The Studio 9 Orchestra

www.studio9orchestra.com

www.facebook.com/The-Studio-9-Orchestra

The Sussex Jazz Orchestra

a18462.wix.com/sussex-jazz-orch

www.facebook.com/pages/Sussex-Jazz-Orchestra-SJO

twitter.com/SussexJazzOrch    

The Sussex Universities’ Big Band    

sussexbigband.co.uk

twitter.com/SussexBigBand    

The Swingshift Big Band                    

www.swingshiftsussex.co.uk

 

When I began this column (SJM39, April 2015), I outlined the criterion for a band to merit a mention. Other bands with less conventional line-ups, some mostly saxes, and others including strings, would appear in the column. But they still play the big band repertoire in big band style.  So also in the list are:-

Saxshop    

www.saxshop.org

Seaford Rock & Jazz Orchestra

www.seafordrockandjazz.co.uk    

The Downsbeat Swing Band                

www.downsbeat.co.uk/    

Trees

www.treesensemble.org

www.facebook.com/Terry-Packs-Trees-1445528665756344        

 

All evidence that the big band scene in Sussex is thriving.  With the prospect of more than 100 gigs in 2016.  If you know of any other bands based in the county, please let me know, together with contact details.

 

Next month:  Hopefully some more band profiles and news.  If you would like your band featured, and I have not already contacted you, please get in touch.  Or if there is anything else, such as gig news, or feedback on this column, that you would like me to include in February’s Big Band Scene, please send it to me by Monday January 25th.  My email address is g8aac@yahoo.co.uk.  

Patrick Billingham

 

Big Band Gigs for December 2015 – Early January 2016

† = regular monthly gig

bold italic = part of a regular series

 

Sunday January 3rd

†12:45 – 3:00 pm, Sounds of Swing Big Band at The Horseshoe Inn Hotel, Posey Green, Windmill Hill, Herstmonceux, East Sussex BN27 4RU (02035 645225)   Free entry. 

7:30 – 10:00  pm, Big Band @Brunswick: Straight No Chaser Navigation, The Music of Simon D’Souza at The Brunswick, 3, Holland Road, Hove BN3 1JF (01273 733984)  Free entry with collection.

 

 

Wednesday January 6th.

†8:30 pm, The Fred Woods Big Band at the Horsham Sports Club, Cricketfield Road, Horsham RH12 1TE (01403 254628).  £2 (Club members free.)

 

 

Tuesday January 12th.

†8:00 – 10:30 pm, The Ronnie Smith Big Band at The Humming Bird Restaurant, Main Terminal Building, Shoreham Airport, West Sussex,  BN43 5FF (01273 452300)  Free entry with collection.

 

 

Sunday January 24th.

†12:30 – 3:00 pm, The South Coast Big Band at The Junction Tavern, 99 Station Road, Polegate, East Sussex BN24 6EB (01323 482010)   Free entry.

7:30 pm, The South Coast Jazz Festival: Claire Martin with Pete Long’s Echoes of Ellington Orchestra at The Ropetackle Arts Centre, Little High Street, Shoreham-by-Sea, BN43 5EG. (01273 464440)  £25.

 

 

Friday January 29th.

†8:30 – 11:00 pm, The Les Paul Big Band (Family & Friends evening) in Patcham, BN1, £5.  For further details contact Les (01273 558009) les@lespaulbigband.co.uk  (Bring your own refreshments.)

 

 

Wednesday February 3rd.

†8:30 pm, The Fred Woods Big Band at the Horsham Sports Club, Cricketfield Road, Horsham RH12 1TE (01403 254628).  £2 (Club members free.)

 

 

Sunday February 7th 2016

†12:45 – 3:00 pm, Sounds of Swing Big Band at The Horseshoe Inn Hotel, Posey Green, Windmill Hill, Herstmonceux, East Sussex BN27 4RU (02035 645225)   Free entry. 

3:00 – 5:00 pm The South Coast Big Band at The Roebuck Inn, Lewes Road, Laughton, Lewes, East Sussex BN8 6BG, (01323 811081)  Free entry.

7:30 – 10:00  pm, Big Band @Brunswick: Terry Pack’s Trees at The Brunswick, 3, Holland Road, Hove BN3 1JF (01273 733984)  Free entry with collection.