Blues mu­si­cian to re­turn to Sh­effield

Yorkshire Post - Culture & The Guide - - MU -

ONE of the last re­main­ing leg­ends of Louisiana’s so-called golden gen­er­a­tion is to re­turn to the re­gion.

Lil’ Jimmy Reed comes from the same gen­er­a­tion of mu­si­cians as Muddy Wa­ters, John Lee Hooker and Howlin’ Wolf who in­flu­enced the style of The Rolling Stones.

Born on a bend on the Mis­sis­sippi river, Reed picked cot­ton in the Deep South as a youth and lived through the era of seg­re­ga­tion.

He plays at Grey­stones in Sh­effield on July 6. For more in­for­ma­tion and tick­ets visit www.my­grey­stones.co.uk MANY people only dis­cover later on in life what it is they want to do. Wyn­ton Marsalis knew he was go­ing to be a mu­si­cian by the time he was just eight years old.

Al­though given the fact he was born into a world filled with mel­liflu­ous mu­si­cal notes, it per­haps comes as lit­tle less of a sur­prise. “My fa­ther was a mu­si­cian and I grew up in New Or­leans in an en­vi­ron­ment where mu­sic was every­where,” he says. “I loved be­ing around jazz mu­si­cians, I loved the way they talked. I liked the mu­si­cians be­fore I even liked the mu­sic.”

Al­though it wasn’t long be­fore the mu­sic, too, held him in its thrall. At the age of eight he per­formed tra­di­tional New Or­leans mu­sic in a church band, led by leg­endary ban­joist Danny Barker.

It was the start of a mu­si­cal ca­reer that has seen him work with some of the grandees, not only of jazz, but mod­ern mu­sic in­clud­ing Dizzy Gillespie, Wil­lie Nel­son and Eric Clap­ton.

Jamie Cul­lum cited him as one of his mu­si­cal in­spi­ra­tions say­ing of Marsalis: “He’s an ex­cel­lent am­bas­sador of jazz, a men­tor for kids and a 21st-century Duke Elling­ton – noth­ing more, noth­ing less.”

Marsalis is both an adroit trum­pet player and a big band leader and later this month he’s bring­ing this unique sound to the Royal Hall, in Har­ro­gate, when he will be per­form­ing with the New York-based Jazz at Lin­coln Cen­ter Orches­tra, of which he is mu­si­cal di­rec­tor.

The band launches its UK tour in Har­ro­gate and the show will en­com­pass pretty much the en­tire his­tory of mod­ern jazz from be­bop to the dance floor, fea­tur­ing big band ar­range­ments of pop­u­lar clas­sics.

The con­cert also cel­e­brates the 75th an­niver­sary of the iconic Amer­i­can record la­bel Blue Note, which Marsalis is signed to. Blue Note be­came to jazz what Sun Records was to rock ‘n’ roll.

In its early days the la­bel was ded­i­cated to record­ing more tra­di­tional jazz but af­ter the Sec­ond World War it switched its at­ten­tion more to­wards mod­ern jazz, record­ing work by be­bop pi­o­neers such as Th­elo­nious Monk and Fats Navarro. “Blue Note started out with Sid­ney Bechet’s Sum­mer­time which was their first hit and over the years they’ve recorded all kinds of jazz mu­sic, from New Or­leans mu­sic to boo­gie woo­gie,” says Marsalis.

They have also had some iconic names on their la­bel over the years in­clud­ing Her­bie Han­cock, Dex­ter Gor­don and Art Blakey. “In the late Six­ties it be­gan work­ing with a younger gen­er­a­tion of mu­si­cians and it’s still go­ing strong to­day.”

Marsalis was brought up with jazz mu­sic and quickly grav­i­tated to­wards it. “I lis­tened to pop mu­sic and

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