Following on from last year’s sell-out show (1956: a Jazz Jubilee), the Jazz Repertory Company returns to Cadogan Hall on Sunday 12 November to perform some of the great jazz of 1957.
Jazz has infinite capacity to live in the present and in the past at the same time. We constantly embellish and adjust the way we think about the music and put it in its historical context. And in the right hands it enlightens all over again.
At the London Jazz Festival this year, one such project, which is presented by drummer Richard Pite’s Jazz Repertory Company, transports us back 60 years for 1957: A Jazz Jukebox, a concert that conjures a delightful musical snapshot of the year.
Richard Pite details the programme:
“In Ella Fitzgerald’s centenary year Georgina Jackson will be performing a selection of songs from Ella’s Duke Ellington Songbook as well as her two great albums with Louis Armstrong, Ella and Louis Again and Porgy and Bess (Enrico Tomasso once again returns as Louis).
“Sinatra’s big album of 1957 was A Swingin’ Affair, (considered to be the sequel to Songs For Swinging Lovers, featured in our ‘56 concert). It was another great collaboration with arranger Nelson Riddle and included such gems as Cole Porter’s Night and Day and At Long Last Love. Iain Mackenzie reprises his role as Sinatra and he’ll also feature the two big singles from ’57: The Lady is a Tramp and Witchcraft.
“One of the finest recordings to be released in 1957 was Miles Ahead which featured Miles Davis accompanied by the gorgeous orchestrations of Gil Evans. Freddie Gavita takes the role of Miles and we’ll be augmenting our big band with French horns, an assortment of woodwinds and a tuba to bring you the distinctive sounds of this wonderful music.
“Other highlights include Duke Ellington’s Shakespeare-inspired Such Sweet Thunder and some swinging blues from Count Basie’s session at the 1957 Newport Jazz Festival which saw him reunited with his great sax star of the ‘30s, Lester Young. There will be a few surprises to finish off the evening in true 1950s style.”
1957: A Jazz Jukebox – The music of Ella Fitzgerald, Frank Sinatra, Louis Armstrong, Duke Ellington, Count Basie, Miles Davis and more. The Pete Long Orchestra with special guests Georgina Jackson, vocals; Iain Mackenzie, vocals; Earl Jackson, vocals; Freddie Gavita, trumpet. Tickets and more details for 12 November are available at the Cadogan Hall website (below). (pp)