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Kenny Wheeler - An Evocation including Dave Holland, Evan Parker

Kenny Wheeler - An Evocation including Dave Holland, Evan Parker

Kenny Wheeler - An Evocation including Dave Holland, Evan Parker
Norma Winstone, Stan Sulzmann, Ralph Towner and his quintet
@ the @ the Cadogan Hall
19 November 2015

Click an image to enlarge.

Biography

Norma Winstone biography

Norma Winstone was born in London and first attracted attention in the late sixties when she shared the bill at Ronnie Scott’s club with Roland Kirk.

Although she began her career singing jazz standards, she became involved in the avant garde movement, exploring the use of the voice in an experimental way and evolving her own wordless approach to improvisation.

She joined groups led by Mike Westbrook, Michael Garrick and sang with John Surman, Kenny Wheeler, Michael Gibbs and John Taylor, and worked extensively with many of the major European names and visiting Americans.

In 1971 she was voted top singer in the Melody Maker Jazz Poll and subsequently recorded her own album “Edge of Time” for Decca, which although long deleted has now been re-released as a CD on the Disconforme label.

In the late seventies she joined pianist John Taylor and trumpeter Kenny Wheeler to form the group Azimuth, which was described by Richard Williams of The Times as “one of the most imaginatively conceived and delicately balanced of all contemporary chamber jazz groups.”

In this setting she combines the instrumental use of the voice with words, most of which she writes herself. Azimuth has recorded several albums on the ECM label (the first three of which have been re-issued as a CD boxed set).

Their CD “How It Was Then… Never Again” was released in May 1995, and received four stars in Down Beat magazine.

Her own legendary album “Somewhere Called Home” on the ECM label is widely considered to be a classic.

In recent years she has become known as a very fine lyricist, writing words to compositions by Ralph Towner, and Brazilian composers Egberto Gismonti and Ivan Lins (who has recorded her English lyrics to his song “Vieste.” She has a special affinity with the music of Steve Swallow, and has written lyrics to many of his compositions, most notably “Ladies in Mercedes,” which has become a standard.

Her voice has become an important part of the sound of Kenny Wheeler’s big band, and can be heard in this context on the ECM double CD “Music for Large and Small Ensembles” which also features John Abercrombie, Dave Holland, Peter Erskine and John Taylor.

Her CD “Well Kept Secret,” recorded with the legendary American pianist Jimmy Rowles, featuring George Mraz on bass and Joe La Barbera on drums, was given a four star rating in Down Beat magazine. Here Norma sings a selection of rare jazz standards, including Jimmy’s famous tune “The Peacocks” for which she wrote lyrics and re-titled “A Timeless Place.” This piece has since been recorded by other artists including jazz singer Mark Murphy, and The Swingle Singers.

In July 2001, she won the title of Best Vocalist in the BBC Jazz Awards hosted by Humphrey Lyttleton at London’s Queen Elizabeth Hall.

With American pianist Fred Hersch, she recorded a CD of Fred’s compositions with her lyrics: called “Songs and Lullabies,” available in the US on Sunnyside, and in England on the Enodoc label. Vibraphonist Gary Burton makes a guest appearance on three tracks.

Winstone was one of the stars of the acclaimed Gilles Peterson ‘Jazz Britannia’ programme shown on BBC 2, from The Barbican which featured influential music of British jazz musicians from the sixties and seventies, along with contemporary jazz artists.

She continues in the forefront of British jazz and was nominated again in the 2007 and 2008 BBC Jazz Awards for best vocalist.

Wintstone was awarded an MBE in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List in 2007.

In 2009 Winstone was awarded the Skoda Jazz Ahead Award in Bremen for her contribution to European Jazz.

Her current group is a trio featuring Italian pianist Glauco Venier and German saxophonist/ bass clarinetist Klaus Gesing.

Kenny Wheeler - An Evocation including Dave Holland, Evan Parker

Kenny Wheeler - An Evocation including Dave Holland, Evan Parker

Kenny Wheeler - An Evocation including Dave Holland, Evan Parker

Kenny Wheeler - An Evocation including Dave Holland, Evan Parker

Kenny Wheeler - An Evocation including Dave Holland, Evan Parker

Kenny Wheeler - An Evocation including Dave Holland, Evan Parker


Recommended
Listening

 

Kenny Wheeler Norma Winstone London Vocal Project - Mirrors

 

Further
Recommended
Viewing

Click the image below to read Dave Holland's biography & see him with Aziza, 2016,
or Kenny Wheeler's image to see the Kenny Wheeler Quintet, 2011,
or Dave Holland's image to see Dave Holland's Prism, 2014...

Aziza @ Cadogan Hall (click to go to this page) Kenny Wheeler Quintet @ the PizzaExpress Jazz Club (click to go to this page) Dave Holland's Prism @ the Love Supreme Jazz Festival, 2014 (click to go to this page)

Go back to the London Jazz Festival 2015 home page.

 Go back to the jazz gallery.

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