SNJO with John Scofield dates for Edinburgh, Glasgow and Stirling
Conventional wisdom insists that the jazz big band had its heyday in the Swing Era before the advent of bebop, but it has remained popular with both jazz fans and musicians. Two home-based projects this month also demonstrate that the big band has been able to move with the times.
The Scottish National Jazz Orchestra has been the single most significant addition to the Scottish jazz scene in the last two decades, and continues to come up with imaginative programming of new and ‘repertory’ music under the direction of saxophonist Tommy Smith.
Their latest project unites them with a distinguished guest, the great American guitarist John Scofield, in an exploration of music drawn from Scofield’s own Loud Jazz fusion project, and the electric period of Miles Davis, 80s vintage (Scofield, of course, is also a Miles alumni).
The band will perform new arrangements of material that will include Scofield’s ‘Go Blow’ and ‘Groove Elation’ and such Miles’ classics as ‘Tutu’ and ‘Jean-Pierre’.
Trumpeter Ryan Quigley will be part of the SNJO as usual, and will barely have time to catch his breath before hitting the road a week later with his own Big Band and guest vocalist Justin Currie (of Del Amitri). They will reprise their successful Glasgow Jazz Festival project of last year in a seven-date tour under the Scottish Arts Council’s Tune Up banner.
Queen’s Hall, Edinburgh, Fri 5 Mar; RSAMD, Glasgow, Sat 6 Mar; MacRobert Centre, Stirling, Sun 7 Mar