I started October rather slowly, as I have been laid low for the past week with a back problem. As much as I hate being unproductive (and in a lot of pain!) it did force me to relax and take time to read, watch movies and make plans. I’m slowly getting back into work mode and the next few months are looking pretty busy…
There are 6 weeks to go until we leave for New York. As well as my lessons with Ingrid Jensen, I’ve also booked in a session with Ralph Alessi. He’s an incredible improviser and I’ve always enjoyed his playing, so I’m excited to spend time with him. Due to some rescheduling necessities, we’ve ended up with a few days at the start of our trip before the lessons, rehearsals and recordings. I’m so happy about that – I was concerned about how tired I’d be after our journey so having a few days to get in the zone is great news! Also, Leah and I have decided on the studio we’ll be using which I’m very excited about!
This week, we launch Apollo Collaborations at HEART in Leeds. We’re bringing David Austin Grey from Birmingham and Stuart McCallum from Manchester, together with Tom Riviere and Steve Hanley from Leeds. I’m excited to hear the results and we’ll be recording the gig for our archives, so clips will be available soon. In the next few weeks, I’ll be getting together with Oli and his team at Split UK to work on the branding for Apollo. We’re aiming to have everything ready by the time we head over to the US. I’ve been working on establishing a team of people to work together on Apollo as it’s growing quickly and I want to make sure we can keep up! All this will be revealed when we launch the branding campaign, so stay tuned.
Scottish Jazz Federation
I’m excited to have accepted the invitation to join the board of the Scottish Jazz Federation. Although I haven’t been based in Scotland for the last 5 years, it is the jazz scene I grew up in and I try to get back and gig as much as I can. I’m delighted to join the board and be involved in the organisation.
There are a number of events and plan in development with Jazz North. We’ll be running a number of How Can We Get More Gigs? events following the success of Leeds and Newcastle earlier in the year. We’re also working on an event to bring together the many musician-promoters living in the North. More news on this very soon!