Loz Speyer’s Time Zone

The Tolbooth, Stirling, Sat 5 May


London-based trumpeter Loz Speyer has been spending a lot of time in Cuba since he last toured Scotland, and that will be reflected in the music he will perform with Time Zone. This short Scottish tour (they also play Montrose and some Highland venues) will be the first live outings for the new six-piece line-up.

Time Zone grew out of Loz’s quartet of guitarist Jez Franks, bassist Jonny Gee and drummer Simon Pearson. Saxophonist Martin Hathaway making the quintet. Now Satin Singh has joined on congas, which takes us back to that Cuban connection.

‘My wife is Cuban,’ Speyer explained, ‘so we’ve been spending quite a lot of time there, and a lot of my recent music is influenced by my experiences. When Martin came into the band it just seemed to bring out more of the quality of the compositions. Adding percussion came out of making a recording with Cuban musicians.

‘I felt that experience really brought out the true qualities of those pieces, and I’ve been doing a lot of playing around with Cuban rhythms, including learning congas. Ideally I’d double myself and be the percussion player as well, but I obviously can’t do that, and Simon has been playing them a good bit longer than me anyway!’

Loz has taken a less than regulation approach to the Latin-jazz fusion of his music, and aims to offer a more multi-layered perspective on Cuban life and music. An unfulfilled ambition is to bring Time Zone and the Cuban musicians together.

‘I’d love to at some point, but that is quite a long shot, and would be an expensive exercise. You never know, though - it might happen someday.’

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