Just got back from a session playing piano with Sergio Barbati on bass and Jon Desbrulais on drums, at a charity event in Wickford, Essex. Great fun and inspiring to play with such brilliant musicians, in a small trio combo.
September has been an exciting month for us as we are under new management! Red & Black Music is now the new brand responsible for delivering Diáspora, the jazz quartet and the trio, alongside affiliated jazz and international music projects. The business, officially started 2nd September, will offer management, production and directorial solutions for directors and musicians. Working closely with the Musicians' Union, it will also conquer inefficiency and communication deficiency (otherwise known to musicians as 'flakiness') within the music industry. The website is still under development but more information will be going up soon...
Diáspora gig in Worcestershire the other week went down a storm! The gig was also the first with the all-new London-based band, a debut for vocalist Roberta De Francia and pianist John Cervantes, who both performed admirably! It was also my first gig doing entirely lead vocals with Diáspora. Needless to say that the practice certainly paid off! On this gig we also had 1 car coming down from Manchester with Demetris Kanaris on bass and Ric Parmegianni on congas, 1 car coming down from Bolton, with Gavin Hibberd on trumpet, and, from Bournemouth, our much-missed and respected Dave Simpson on kit/timbales. All of us rendezvoused at a farm in the middle of nowhere (well, just over the hills from Stroud, actually!) under a clear night of stars, to play 2 fabulous sets of salsa and Latin Jazz before stopping for a pint and then heading off our separate ways... well most of us! The London crew stayed behind and slept on camp beds of course! All in all a wonderful road trip. Many congratulations to our bride and groom for the evening, Russ and Jenn. Such a lovely couple and family, we wish them the very best!
Another exciting thing is that we've got our first P.A. system for the band. We opted for a Yamaha 300 model, which can do anything up to a 5/6-piece band, plus take it wherever we go for the jazz quartet and trio gigs. The sound is perfect and crystal clear, and I am also very excited about hooking up the mixing desk into Logic and doing a bit of home production!
Possible new regular gig on the horizon. We want to bring back 'The Open Session' formula but do it in a slightly different way. Of course, the aim will be a platform where musicians and performing artists can road test new material. Watch this space!
RED & BLACK MUSIC