This has been an open secret in the industry for a couple of months now. The third jazz musician to be appointed as a BBC Radio 3 New Generation Artist for a period of two years 2010-2012 is clarinettist/ saxophonist Shabaka Hutchings (photo Patsy Cole).
The first jazz recipient was Gwilym Simcock, the second Tom Arthurs. The scheme is one of the means by which BBC Radio 3 fulfils its commitment to a quota of home-produced live music broadcasting. It has been run since inception in 1999 by senior BBC producer Adam Gatehouse. The artists work with BBC ensembles, with other New Generation Artists, and often at festivals such as Cheltenham and City of London.
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Shabaka is a thoroughly deserving recipient. A recent review by Mike Hobart in the Financial Times, which amounts to a brief profile, dwells on his adaptibility to many musical contexts. “He is equally at home delivering a highlight moment on Guy Barker’s Big Band Britannia as he is with the decidedly left-field London Improvisers Orchestra.”
Isn't it amazing that every one of these New Generation Artists are all part of the “Serious” camp before they get picked.. hmmmmmm…. I wonder how that happens… PUBLISHING PUBLISHING PUBLISHING!!!!
bullshit.. shabaka deserves this as much as anyone else, go shab!
Anonymous, thank you for the first comment, which was well made, I just didn't see the point of putting it up twice.
I really don't understand all this adulation for Sabaka.
He's not a that great a musician, and after following his music for quite some time conclude that he's totally undeserving.
I suspect as always it's more to do with moving in certain jazz circles. (soweto kinch *cough cough* eric dolphy wannabe).
The BBC scheme, which gets musicians to record loads of material for broadcast output, also brings the musician on as he or she goes through it.
So I can't agree with you:
I would say that such a judgment can only be made after the two -year stint is over.
Yes, there is no shortage of candidates to choose from. There is an amazing abundance of talent to choose from. And the scheme is – controversially – free to, and does, pick musicians from anywhere in the world.
And hey, I would also say that there are considerably worse influences to be exposed to than Eric Dolphy or Soweto Kinch.
Wait and see?
The real issue here is that Serious's has the monopoly on who get's picked, the first anonymous is correct, every one of the artists picked so far have been a serious backed or 'groomed' artist, and Serious has made loads of money from all the commissions they get. They also are the ones getting over half a million a year to put on jazz from the arts council, and then scores of musicians are being denied funding because the arts council feels they have spent enough money on jazz through serious. But Serious have their favorites that they place in many shows/contexts, and overlooks many many deserving UK artists. Some of the most famous of UK jazz artists or skilled have never gotten a gig through Serious. How can a company that is getting so much funding be so limited in who they present (I'm not talking about foreign artists) Let's see in two years if the next artist is one from the Serious Camp. I would bet money on it. John Cumming and co. are running the UK jazz scene, I for one vote this monopoly is broken up.
Thank you Mark. I hope this leads to a constructive debate, and shall be interested to hear a counter-argument from either Serious or ACE.
Shabaka is a great, well-respected musician. He is regularly hired by musicians such John Edwards, Mark Sanders, Seb Rochford, Steve Noble and Pat Thomas – those gigs have nothing to do with Serious – he is there becuase he is a great musician. He is highly thought of among musicians and if you don't like his music then that's fine, but don't presume yourself as such an authority to comment on his musicianship. I get a bit fed up of seeing people rubbishing young musicians on this site – what good comes of this?