Sbotolau is new series of digital introductions to music creators in Aberystwyth and wider Ceredigion, hosted by MusicFest Aberystwyth.
For summer 2022, we want to introduce you to not one but FOUR jazz acts from Aberystwyth and wider Wales who have been selected to perform at Musicfest 2022.
What is Archwilwyr Jazz Explorers?
Brought to you in partnership with Royal Welsh College of Music & Drama and Arts Council of Wales, this is a special collaboration to bring four jazz acts from across Wales to perform as part of Musicfest Aberystwyth 2022 and work to build an exciting new network for Welsh-based jazz performers as part of Archwilwyr Jazz Explorers.
Archwilwyr Jazz Explorers is an innovative research and development project developed by Cymru Jazz Wales, a network of freelance jazz and creative musicians with partner organisations including Tŷ Cerdd, music services and venues from across Wales, and funded by Arts Council of Wales’s Connect and Flourish programme.
After a national call for jazz artists to perform at Aberystwyth this summer, the following four acts have selected:
featuring Gareth Roberts (trombone), Dave Jones (piano), Ashley John Long (double bass) and Greg Evans (drums)
We have the pleasure of inviting these world-class performers to Aberystwyth this summer, for both a Jam Session with local musicians and their own live set.
The Roberts / Jones Quartet is a Welsh jazz ensemble created earlier this year to perform the music of trombonist Gareth Roberts and pianist Dave Jones. Both Gareth and Dave are established performers, composers and bandleaders on the South Wales scene and have worked together many times in the past. They have both written new music for this line-up.
Gareth is originally from Aberystwyth and most of his early musical experiences came playing
Euphonium in the Aberystwyth Silver Band. He now resides in Cardiff, teaches jazz trombone at
RWCMD and performs regularly across South Wales and further afield with a wide variety of
ensembles. His award-winning quintet have released two critically acclaimed albums of original material and two of his large-ensemble compositions have won prizes at the National Eisteddfod. Dave is a classically-trained pianist and organist who developed an interest in jazz, and studied with jazz author Lionel Grigson from the Guildhall School of Music in London. He has since released numerous critically-acclaimed jazz albums with his own ensembles and appeared on albums by other artists, with whom he tours in the UK and Ireland and overseas. He also composes and produces music for TV and Film.
Watch them live
Join us at the Bank Vault on 24 July 2022 to hear the Roberts \ Jones Quartet perform a live set, as part of Musicfest 2022.
“I’ll admit that I’ve never been a big fan of the trombone but I love Roberts’ playing. Nimble and inventive he seems to bring out the best in the instrument, from gutbucket slides and rasps on the up-tempo material to a surprising tenderness on ballads.”
“Dave Jones on piano I think is, a terrific player.”
Freshly Cut Grass
featuring students and alumni from Royal Welsh College of Music & Drama
We have the pleasure of inviting this rising-star jazz group to Aberystwyth this summer their own live set.
Freshly Cut Grass meet around a musical cauldron of influences such as Frank Zappa, Snarky Puppy, Chicago and The Band but to name a few. They bring a vintage groove based rhythm section under exploratory guitars and innovative horns creating an ‘old sound in a modern life’.
Formed over the pandemic, the band is made up for a mix of Jazz and Classical players from the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama (students and alumni) with everyone in the band bringing their own creative touch. The band’s first album ‘Topiary’ was recorded entirely remotely with each member recording at their own homes. Now that they are finally able to play live the momentum is building!
Expect a huge sounding show which in their own words is ‘genre bending music, with groove’
Watch them live
Join us at Rummers Wine Bar on 25 July 2022 to hear Freshly Cut Grass perform a live set, as part of Musicfest 2022.
Plague Doctors Cure All
featuring Lyndon Owen (saxophones), Liam Lee-Hines (electric bass), Will Cass (guitar), and Andy Goodall (drums)
We have the pleasure of inviting this popular, locally-grown cross-over act to Musicfest 2022 this summer for their own live set.
The “Plague Doctors Cure All” provide a radically different approach to improvised music. Certainly a jazz crossover band full of monstrous grooves, high energy, powerhouse playing. An eclectic mix of players who found an instant synergy ranging from progressive jazz/funk rock influences to free form and electronica; an electric band with lively grooves with a very dark energy. Often compared to King Crimson but much more danceable – work that out!
Described as the missing link between Get the Blessing and Clown Core. The band comprises of local Aberystwyth musician Lyndon Owen on Tenor and Soprano saxophones and EWI; Liam Lee-Hines – electric bass; Will Cass – guitar; Andy Goodall – drums. Although an improvising group the music of the Plague Doctors has a power and immediacy that should also appeal to adventurous rock listeners
Watch them live
Join us at Rummers Wine Bar on 27 July 2022 to hear the Plague Doctors Cure All perform a live set, as part of Musicfest 2022.
“Cass then took over, soaring on guitar and sounding positively ‘Frippish’ at times. When Owen returned on tenor his skronking, screaming solo reminded me of David Jackson’s famous sax feature on Van Der Graaf Generator’s “Killer”. Lee-Hines’ bass feature then embraced the kind of almost sub-sonic frequencies that
you could feel in your chest and stomach. A quieter passage then saw the Doctors’ lowering the temperature, only for the mercury to rise again as they rounded off a blistering first set with a bout of dazzlingly complex unison riffing that recalled Crimson at their best.”
featuring Ben Thomas (trumpet) and Greg Evans (drums) plus Richard Jones (guitar) and Bill Fletcher (bass)
We have the pleasure of inviting this new band of superstar performers to Musicfest 2022 this summer for their own live set.
The Thomas-Evans Band is a brand new project featuring an ‘all Welsh’ lineup of Ben Thomas (trumpet) and Greg Evans (drums) plus Richard Jones (guitar) and Bill Fletcher (bass).
Ben and Greg have been performing together for over 20 years on the local scene in Wales as well as internationally with many amazing musicians. They both share a love of ‘cool jazz’ which is showcased in this funky lineup with ‘legends of the scene’ Richard and Bill making up the rhythm section.
The live set features original tunes written by Ben plus reworkings of classic pop tunes and jazz standards.
Watch them live
Join us at the Round Studio at Aberystwyth Arts Centre on 29 July 2022 to hear the Thomas-Evans Band perform a live set, as part of Musicfest 2022.
Need a spotlight?
Sbotolau is new series of digital introductions to music creators in Aberystwyth and wider Ceredigion, hosted by MusicFest Aberystwyth. If you are a local music creator or music group and would like a spotlight shone on your work, please do get in touch.