|Captain of the Herts Jazz team: Clark Tracey|
Photo from 2016. Credit: Melody McLaren
Herts Jazz, having moved towns and days, stays in St Albans but, from April, is back on the day most favoured by its punters and by Duke Ellington: Sunday.
Stephen Hyde, for Herts Jazz, explained: “We were putting on gigs on Sundays in Welwyn Garden City until a year ago. The venue costs were getting too high to be sustainable so we looked around…
“We’d always wanted to be in St Albans and the opportunity came up at The Maltings but the only night available was Tuesday. We had little choice really and went for it, knowing that we would lose some of our regulars due to both the change of town and change of evening.
“Since then we have had a great first year, picking up plenty of new members and regulars from the St Albans area. However we did a survey of our voluminous mailing list to see how we could do even better and the clear conclusion was to move to Sundays. A frequent comment was ‘I’d love to come more often but our band rehearses on Tuesdays.’ It seems Tuesday night is rehearsal night in Hertfordshire!
“We were able to persuade our friends who run the Maltings to let us move to Sunday nights. So from 7 April that is what we are doing and hopefully we will see even more of our friends in the audience!”
The driving force at the club is drummer Clark Tracey and he has an enthusiastic band of helpers.
It’s Herts Jazz’s 50th anniversary year and something special is planned for later in the year, Stephen tells me.
And there is also the 9th Herts Jazz Festival which will take place in Bishops Stortford over the weekend of 27-29 September 2019 (programme on the Herts Jazz website – see below – as soon as it’s decided).
Meanwhile, get these May to June dates in your diaries:
Sunday 7 April: John Warren Nonet (John Warren – conductor, Steve Fishwick – trumpet, Sam Brasher – alto, Pete Hurt – tenor, Owen Dawson – trombone, Sam Rapley – bass clarinet, Nick Costley-White – guitar, Alcyona Mick – piano, Dave Whitfield – bass, Dave Hamblett – drums)
Sunday 14 April: Damon Brown Quintet (Damon Brown – trumpet, Christian Brewer – alto, Leon Greening – piano, Adam King – bass, Clark Tracey – drums)
Sunday 21 April: The Clark Tracey Jam Session (Mark Nightingale – trombone, James Copus – trumpet, Noah Stoneman – piano, Arnie Somogyi – bass, Clark Tracey – drums)
Sunday 28 April: Gabriel Latchin Trio (Gabriel Latchin – piano, Dario Di Lecce – bass, Josh Morrison – drums)
Sunday 5 May: Nat Steele Quintet (Nat Steele – vibes, Colin Oxley – guitar, Leon Greening – piano, Adam King – bass, Mark Taylor – drums)
Sunday 12 May: Winston Clifford (Winston Clifford – vocals/drums, Dave Newton – piano, Dave Chamberlain – bass, Clark Tracey – drums)
Sunday 19 May: Talinka Quartet (Tali Atzmon – vocals, Gilad Atzmon – reeds/guitar/accordion, Jenny Bliss – Baroque violin/viola da gamba, Yuri Stavin – bass)
Sunday 26 May: Rossano Sportiello Trio (Rossano Sportiello – piano, Dave Green – bass, Steve Brown – drums)
Sunday 9 June: Stan Sulzmann Quartet (Stan Sulzmann – tenor, Will Barry – piano, Steve Watts – bass, Clark Tracey – drums)
Sunday 16 June: Art Themen/James Gardiner-Bateman Quintet (Art Themen, James Gardiner-Bateman – reeds, Gareth Williams – piano, Arnie Somogyi – bass, Clark Tracey – drums)
Sunday 23 June: Sean Payne Quartet (Sean Payne – alto, Elliott Sansom – piano, Freddie Jensen – bass, Felix Ambach – drums)
Sunday 30 June: Alan Barnes Quintet (Alan Barnes – reeds, Bruce Adams – trumpet, Robin Aspland – piano, Andrew Cleyndert – bass, Clark Tracey – drums)
LINK: Herts Jazz website