24th June 2021
Birmingham’s jazz-lovers can watch some of the UK’s best known musicians at Mailbox this summer, with an array of performances set to take place as part of The Birmingham, Sandwell & Westside Jazz Festival.
Returning to the West Midlands for its 37th year, the festival celebrates the history of jazz, as well as looking to the genre’s future, with a programme that’s jam-packed with music, history, and culture.
Highlights of the festival include Alan Barnes, Billy Thompson, The Jake Leg Jug Band, and Martin Litton, who will all be performing at the Mailbox this July.
Performances will take place at Canalside on the following dates:
Saturday 17th July, 12.30pm: The Alan Barnes Quartet
Monday 19th July, 12.30pm: Martin Litton and Janice Day
Wednesday 21st July, 12.30pm: The Billy Thompson Trio
Thursday 22nd July, 12.30pm: The Jake Leg Jug Band
About the performers:
The Alan Barnes Quartet
No Birmingham jazz festival would be complete without the outstanding Alan Barnes. His career since leaving Humphrey Lyttelton’s Band has taken in playing with many of the top American jazzmen, collecting over 30 British Jazz Awards and being twice nominated as BBC Jazz Musician of the year.
Martin Litton and Janice Day
Martin Litton is a brilliant and versatile pianist with a remarkable sense of historical context in jazz. His wife and musical partner, Janice Day, specialises in authentic performances of the finest songs of the inter-war years, commemorating a great age of female singers. Together they have presented stage shows such as Dance Band Divas and Fats Waller in Love.
The Billy Thompson Trio
Billy Thompson is a classically trained improvising violinist from North Wales who works in a wide variety of styles. He achieved the rare distinction of reaching the televised stages of the BBC Young Jazz Musician of the Year in both 1996 and 1998. He has worked with Barbara Thompson’s Paraphernalia and also played with Mike Westbrook, Jools Holland and Huw Warren.
The Jake Leg Jug Band
The Jake Leg Jug Band brings you the authentic sounds of 1920s and 1930s America – jazz, blues, gospel, ragtime – songs of murder, betrayal, gambling, liquor and redemption. After a year that saw more than 50 gigs cancelled, the band is looking forward to being able finally to perform live the tracks from their latest album, Goodbye Booze.
Head to the Birmingham Jazz Festival website for more information.