What next?

What should I do next?

Get a jazz-adviser

Not a snob for whom jazz is the only thing worth listening to.  Just someone who loves music, knows your tastes and can point you to some interesting performances.

Listen to the sounds you like…

…not the genres you like. Is it melodies, rhythms or voices that float your boat?  Do you love the impact of a big band, or the clean, spare sound of a piano trio?  Listen to what you like, and don’t worry so much about arbitrary categories of music.  Classification is for librarians and plane-spotters, not for musicians.

Have a read of this

Dave Gelly’s 30-second jazz: the 50 crucial concepts, styles and performers, each explained in half a minute is the jazz-tester’s bible. You want one short page on The Trumpet, or New Orleans, or Ella Fitzgerald?  It’s all here.

Enjoy the music

If you run into a spot of jazz-confusion and find yourself grimacing, don’t worry about it.  It’s really not the end of the world. Every interesting book, film or friend contains certain things that you can’t entirely understand.  Follow the Barford Doctrine: stop trying to solve music as though it’s a puzzle.  Just listen, and enjoy it.

What will JazzJanuary do next?

Jazz music worked so well on normal people that although the trial is finished, the programme of music will go on. Tickets have been booked for performances far into the future. JazzJanuary’s advisers, testers – even some of the musicians – have been collaborating:


Sophie, Jazz-tester on 10th January (Gareth Lockrane Big Band) uses her new alto saxophone to announce her defection to the Jazz-people on 20th February.  A month later, saxophone expert Alex Hitchcock gave her an hour’s help, proving that the Jazz-people look after their own.


Jazz-advisers Karen Cheney (schoolteacher) and Joel Barford  (session drummer, pictured)  used January to plan a jazz workshop for these sixth-formers…

School (1)

…Note the school’s existing drums, sidelined in favour of the sleek instruments provided by the visitor. The workshop was described as “awesome”. One school pupil is reported to have played the drums every lunchtime since.


Oliver, jazz-tester on 10th January (Gareth Lockrane Big Band) took up music the following day.  After 10 months of learning the clarinet in school he was ready to join the Jazz-people and was initiated in a single lesson on 12th November by the legendary Jim Gold, who is known as “The Obi-Wan of the alto saxophone”.

Next up…

Performances seen or booked, from the end of JazzJanuary’s test phase (top of list) to present day (bottom of list):

Royal Academy of Music Big Band, again (Duke’s Hall)
Guildhall Big Band featuring Liane Carroll and Ralph Salmins (Barbican – plus advisers)
Alex Hitchcock Quartet, again (Hot Numbers, Cambridge)
Resolution 88 (Pizza Express)
W3 Jazz Jam (Ronnie Scott’s)
Jochen Rueckert Quartet featuring Mark Turner (Pizza Express – plus advisers)
Shayna Steele (Pizza Express)
Magnus Öström Quartet (Ronnie Scott’s)
Tom Barford Quintet (The Oxford)
Chris Higginbottom Quartet featuring Tom Cawley (Ronnie Scott’s – plus advisers)
John Cleary and the Absolute Monster Gentlemen (Ronnie Scott’s – plus advisers)
Freddie Gavita Quartet (Ronnie Scotts – only half the set)
Resolution 88, again (CB2, Cambridge)
Tal Janes’ Bahla, Will Barry Trio, Ashley Henry Trio (The Vortex – Royal Academy of Music finals, guitar and piano)
King Solomon Hick Quartet (Café Central, Madrid)
Zhenya Strigalev Trio (Hot Numbers, Cambridge)
Laurence Juber & Nick Fitch (Pizza Express)
Mark Hale Trio featuring Saul Rubin (Hot Numbers, Cambridge)
James Pearson’s 100 Years of Jazz Piano (Ronnie Scott’s)
Gareth Lockrane Big Band, again (606 Club)
Barford-Stoneman Organ Quintet (Hunter Club, Bury St Edmunds)
Eat Logic (606 Club)
Steve Gadd Quintet featuring Michael Landau (Ronnie Scott’s – plus advisers)
Allison Neale Quartet (Ronnie Scott’s)
National Youth Jazz Orchestra, again (Saffron Hall, Essex)
Jim Gold trio, Ben Treacher Trio (The Vortex – plus advisers)
Mark Guiliana Quartet (Ronnie Scott’s – plus advisers)
Josh Kemp Quartet (Ronnie Scott’s)
GoGo Penguin (The Junction, Cambridge)
Zoe Gilby Quartet (Cadogan Hall – LJF)
Tal Janes’ Bahla, again (The Omnibus – LJF)
Alex Hitchcock Quintet, Ashley Henry Trio (The Green Note – LJF)
Tim Garland Trio (Wigmore Hall – LJF – plus advisers)
Major Swing (The Grapes, Cambridge – CJF)
Cesca, Mode 9 (La Raza, Cambridge – CJF)
Anita Wardell / Robin Phillips Trio (The Gonville Hotel, Cambridge – CJF – plus advisers)
Caxton Swing featuring Alan Barnes (The Leys School, Cambridge – CJF)
Resolution 88, again, Binker Golding Quartet,  (La Raza, Cambridge – CJF)
Zeñel, Trio HLK,  (Hot Numbers, Cambridge – CJF)
Ben Creighton-Griffiths, Laura Jurd’s Dinosaur, Will Barry / Alex Hitchcock (Clare Cellars, Cambridge – CJF)

Bill Stewart trio featuring Larry Goldings, Peter Bernstein (Ronnie Scott’s – plus advisers)
Jacob Collier, Asaf Sirkis, Stian Carstensen, Rob Mullarkey (Ronnie Scott’s – plus advisers)
Gareth Lockrane Big Band, again (606 Club – plus advisers)
Jon Cleary, again (Ronnie Scott’s)
Ben Wendel Group (Ronnie Scott’s – plus advisers)
Chanan Hanspal Trio (Hot Numbers, Cambridge)
Jim Gold Quartet (Ronnie Scott’s)
Resolution 88, again (Mildenhall Social Club, Suffolk)
Jasper Høiby’s Fellow Creatures (The Vortex)
Billy Marrows Octet (Iklectik Arts Lab)
Yussef Kamaal (Koko – nb Yussef absent from the band)
Brad Mehldau trio (St Andrew’s Hall, Norwich)
Buddy Rich Big Band featuring Dave Weckl (Ronnie Scott’s)
Big Bad Wolf (Hot Numbers, Cambridge)
Hitchcock/Barford/Maddren/Ireland (Hidden Rooms, Cambridge)
Big Bad Wolf, again (The Royal Albert, Deptford)
Amy Mayes (Ronnie Scott’s)
Black and Blue Jazz Band featuring Alexandra May (The Nightjar)
Three Step Manoeuvre featuring Gareth Lockrane (Hidden Rooms, Cambridge)
Mansur Brown / Yussef Dayes, featuring Rocco Palladino (Church of Sound)
Gareth Lockrane Big Band, again (Kings Place)
Alex Hitchcock Quintet featuring Steve Fishwick (Pizza Express)
National Youth Jazz Orchestra, again, featuring Liane Carroll (Saffron Hall, Essex)
Nate Smith + Kinfolk (Ronnie Scott’s, plus advisers)
Portico Quartet (Scala)
Gareth Lockrane Big Band, again (606 Club)
Joshua Redman Trio featuring Reuben Rogers, Gregory Hutchinson (Ronnie Scott’s, plus advisers)
Joe Lovano Quartet (Ronnie Scott’s, plus advisers)
Mark Trounson Quartet (Ronnie Scott’s, plus advisers)
Stan Sulzmann’s Neon Orchestra (606 Club)
Mark Guiliana Quartet, again (Ronnie Scott’s, plus advisers)
Oscar Jerome (Servant Jazz Quarters)
Waaju (Hot Numbers, Cambridge)
Barford / Stoneman Quintet, again (St John’s, Smith Square – LJF)
Clare Teal (St John’s, Smith Square – LJF)
Barford / Stoneman Quintet, again (Hot Numbers, Cambridge)
NewGenJazz: Mode 9, Nerija, The Gravy Train, Flying Machines, again; Phil Stevenson Trio, Resolution 88, again; Zeñel, again; Binker & Moses.  (Corn Exchange, Cambridge)
Afro Tema (Hot Numbers, Cambridge)

Kurt Rosenwinkel’s “Bandit 65” (Ronnie Scott’s)
Tom Barford’s Asterope, again (The Grey Horse, Kingston)
Alistair Martin Quintet (Clare Cellars, Cambridge)
Will Barry / Jim Gold (Hot Numbers, Cambridge)
Gareth Lockrane Big Band, again (606 Club)
Matt Anderson Quartet (Hot Numbers, Cambridge)
Tom Smith Septet (The Omnibus, Clapham)
Noah Stoneman Trio (The Vortex)
Chris Cheek Quintet (Caius College, Cambridge)
Chris Potter’s Underground (Ronnie Scott’s)
Lee Konitz Quartet (Ronnie Scott’s)
Raúl Rodríguez (Teatro San Francisco, Vejer de la Frontera)
Sam Miles Quartet (Hot Numbers, Cambridge)
Ronnie Scott’s All-Stars (The Guildhall, King’s Lynn)
Glad Atzmon / Orient House Ensemble ft Asaf Sirkis (606 Club)
Barford / Stoneman Quintet, again (Ronnie Scott’s)
Courtney Pine (Saffron Hall, Essex)
Adam Osmianski Organ Trio (Hot Numbers, Cambridge)
Three Step Manoeuvre, again (St John’s College, Cambridge)
Bahla, again (St John’s College, Cambridge)
Tom Seals Band (The Loft, Keswick Blues and Jazz Festival)
Jon Cleary, again (Ronnie Scott’s, plus advisers)
Peter Bernstein / Larry Goldings / Bill Stewart, again (Pizza Express)
Miles Mindlin Quartet (Bar 48)
Zeñel, again (Redon, Bethnal Green)
The Blackbyrds (Ronnie Scott’s)
Guy Barker Big Band ft Billy Cobham (Ronnie Scott’s)
Alistair Martin Quintet, again (Luna Lounge)
Tom Smith’s Queertet (Deviant and Dandy Brewery, Hackney)
Sam Braysher Trio (Hot Numbers, Cambridge)
Nate Smith + Kinfolk, again (The Jazz Café, plus advisers)
Barford/Hitchcock/Ireland/Maddren (The Vortex)
Tom Seals Band, again (Zedel)
Jean Toussaint (Hidden Rooms, Cambridge)
Tom Barford Quintet, again (King’s Place)
Aziza, Ronnie Scott’s
Barford / Stoneman Quintet, again (Clare Cellars, Cambridge)
Ant Law/Alex Hitchcock/Dan Casimir/Marc Michel (Espresso Library, Cambridge)
Harry Greene Trio ft Ashton Jones, again (University Centre, Cambridge)
Jasper Høiby’s Planet B (Caius College, Cambridge)
Laura Jurd’s Dinosaur, again (Zoology Museum, Cambridge)
Big Bad Wolf, again (Zoology Museum, Cambridge)
Josh Kemp Trio ft Ross Stanley (Espresso Library, Cambridge)



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