Ipswich Jazz Club, Review by Alan Crumpton

Horn Factory

Ipswich Jazz Club, Review by Alan Crumpton

This fourth visit to Ipswich Jazz Club was, arguably, the band’s best and the concert was certainly well received by the audience.

It was a menu of modern big band jazz at its best and included some firm favourites like the late Joe Zawinul’s “Birdland” and the traditional Irish air, Danny Boy.

There were also some more unfamiliar numbers, but one thread wound through everything the band attempted, and that was some superb ensemble from each of the sections and some equally superb solos from various members of the band.

They included a smooth version of “You Don’t Know What Love Is” from the trombone of Alan Collier, that evoked fond memories of the late Don Usher and an equally smooth and inspired version of Danny Boy, from trumpeter Tom Walsh, at 16 years old, the youngest member of the band and clearly on the road to a fine and assured future in music.

Tom is a current member of the National Youth Jazz Orchestra and is following in the footsteps of the band’s lead alto, Gill Burgoyne, who was also with NYJO in the early days of her career … she also featured on several solos, including a spirited offering in Phil Collins’ up tempo number, “Billy, Don’t Lose My Number”.

Tenor-man Jonathan Farnhill too, featured heavily in most numbers and he joined Gill Burgoyne in the solos in Cole Porter’s evergreen “Love For Sale”.

Driven along by a cracking rhythm section that featured Gerry Gillings on drums and Bob Airzee on percussion with the two Emmas on piano and bass guitar, things always moved along sweetly.

With the band’s director, Ron Rogered (sic), in tight control throughout, Horn Factory swung from start to finish with a programme that was packed with variety and included ballads and Latin numbers as well as hard driven, up tempo material.

As mentioned, there were plenty of memorable solos, and the ensemble work was something special, but when they all blew as one unit, it was powerful stuff.

There are plenty of bands around Suffolk offering nostalgic doses of Glenn Miller, Tommy Dorsey and Count Basie material, and there’s nothing wrong with that, but Horn Factory specialise in up to date modern big band numbers.

It means they are pretty rare and Suffolk should try and preserve them … they are that good.

Alan Crumpton, EADT

Thanks Crumpy – we still don’t know where you got ‘Ron Rodgerd’ from, but it will always make us smile. 😀