The Monk Liberation Front presents
The Complete Works of Thelonious Monk, featuring:
Tony Kofi, Jonathon Gee, Ben Hazelton, Winston Clifford, Quentin
Collins, Cleveland Watkiss
& Corey Mwamba
@ Southbank Centre's / Royal Festival Hall
25 November 2007
Click an image to enlarge.
Tony Kofi biography
Tony Kofi was born in Nottingham to West African parents. His musical
journey began after attending a series of workshops in Leicester,
run by Nick Hislam.
After receiving a full scholarship, Kofi attended the legendary
Berkley College of Music in Boston Mass, USA. Here he would share
invaluable experience with the likes of Ernie Watts, Andy Magee
and Billy Pierce.
Kofi was a member of the UK’s Jazz Warriors from 1991, he
also played a vital role in Gary Crosby’s Nu Troop. Kofi continued
to impress critics, fans and fellow musicians throughout the 1990’s
with his hard work ethic. Acclaim would come from many sources.
The list of musicians he has performed, or shared a stage with is
Branford Marsalis, Billy Higgins,Claude Deppa’s A.J.E &
Horns Unlimited, Byron Wallen’s Indigo, Clifford Jarvis, Courtney
Pine, Cheikh Tidiane Fall Quintet, Digable Planets, Donald Byrd,
Dr Lonnie Smith, Eddie Henderson, Jean Toussaint big band, Julian
Joseph big band, Jazz Jamaica all stars, Jullian Arguelles, Queen
Latifah, Salt’n Pepper, Ralph Moore, The David Murray Big
Band, Us-3, The Township Express Orchestra, Tim Richards’
Great Spirit, The Grand Union orchestra, Andrew Hill’s Anglo-American
Big Band, Sam Rivers Rivbea orchestra, and Lucky Ranku’s African
jazz all stars.
As well as the above achievements, Kofi has composed music and
performed with The Kofi Trio, the Afro Jazz Family (a ten-piece
group) and the World Saxophone Quartet. Since 2000, Kofi has worked
with Jonathon Gee, Ben Hazleton, and Winston Clifford with featured
artist, Orphy Robinson (vibes & Marimba). The result is an acclaimed
collection of Thelonious Monk compositions, all 70 of which were
performed in a marathon 6 hour set at the 2003 London Jazz Festival.
The Quartet’s album “All is know” received the
2005 Jazz Parliamentary award, as well as the 2005 BBC Jazz award
for best ensemble & best album.
The most recent Tony Kofi Trio + 1 consists of Tony Kofi (saxophones)
Byron Wallen (trumpet) Anders Olinder Ob B3 Hammond Organ and Winston
Clifford on drums. This group also augments into a six-piece band
including Robert Fordjour (drums) Cameron Pierre (guitar) and Donald
Jonathon Gee biography
Since being voted Guardian/Wire British Jazz Awards ‘Most
Promising Newcomer’ in 1991, Jonathan Gee has enjoyed a highly
successful ten-year collaboration with bassist Steve Rose and drummer
Gee has also worked with many of the country's leading jazz musicians
including Steve Williamson, Iain Ballamy, Orphy Robinson, Ed Jones,
Claire Martin, Tim Whitehead and Christine Tobin. He has also collaborated
with top US artists David Murray, Benny Golson, Art Farmer, Mark
Murphy, Harry Allen, James Spaulding, Sonny Fortune, Ted Curson
and poet Lemn Sissay.
Gee has performed in 18 countries around the world including most
recently, Finland, Sweden, Spain and Italy. His trio has toured
Azerbaijan, Israel, Cameroon, Singapore, and performed in Nicosia
with the Cyprus Chamber Orchestra.
Current projects include the Monk Liberation Front, a band dedicated
to the music of Thelonious Monk, trios based in the UK, Italy and
Scandinavia, a fusion band, and duets with singer/pianist Dominic
Jonathan Gee has released five albums in his own name. They include
three trio recordings and a solo album “Wishbone” featuring
songs by Duke Ellington and Billy Strayhorn.
Corey Mwamba biography
Corey Mwamba is one of the exciting new generation of composers
and musicians in improvised and contemporary music, and a committed
advocate of culture and heritage in the East Midlands region. His
music contains elements of jazz, folk from different countries,
and electronica. Mwamba is primarily known as a highly creative
improviser with a wide stylistic range. He has performed with the
likes of Orphy Robinson, Pat Thomas, Lol Coxhill, Andy Hamilton,
Tony Kofi, the Master Drummers of Africa, Evan Parker, the Quantic
Soul Orchestra, Robert Mitchell's Panacea, as well as his own solo
performances and with his collective the Symbiosis Ensemble. He
has also worked as a percussionist with Derby Concert Orchestra.
In 2005 his solo improvisation, Three Two One, was selected for
the Freeness album set up by CDR, Chris Offili, and the Observer
Corey Mwamba was recently selected for the Jerwood/PRS Foundation's
Take Five Initiative, which is a significant artist development
scheme for emerging jazz musicians.