Claire Martin & Richard Rodney Bennett - Live Review - Yorkshire Post

22 July 2011
Yorkshire Post
Reginald Brace

Jazz Preview: Traditional jazz festival that hits the right notes

It is pleasing to report that Yorkshire's most enduring jazz festival is still in business and will be celebrating its 24th anniversary next week.

Pickering Jazz Festival might not be a major player on the festival circuit but its survival for almost a quarter of a century proves its popularity among lovers of traditional jazz. "We have a lot of regulars from all over the country who come for a week's holiday and mix the music with sightseeing," says spokesman Stan Walton. "The combination of music and attractive countryside creates a great atmosphere."

All the concerts are in the evening in the town's Memorial Hall. The festival begins next Monday with Richard Leach's 7 Stars of Jazz, followed on a nightly basis by the Amy Roberts Band, Spirit of New Orleans, the Savannah Jazz Band, the WirrOrleans Jazz Band and, finally, the Gambit Jazzmen.

Meanwhile, Hull's jazz festival gathers momentum tonight with the unveiling of saxophonist Snake Davis playing with a string quartet at Hull Truck Theatre. Tomorrow at the same venue funk legend Pee Wee Ellis marks his 70th birthday with a show which will pulsate to music bearing his imprint.

The South African Gospel Singers will be in exuberant voice on Sunday night, and Monday has the alluring prospect of gipsy jazz played by Fapy Lapertin from Belgium, Lollo Meier from Holland and Tcha Limberger from Transylvania.

Duos do not come much classier than Claire Martin and Richard Rodney Bennett at Harrogate Theatre on Sunday night. Martin's unruffled poise and Bennett's elegant accompaniment make them a team to treasure.

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