Andre Canniere to record new album with special pre-recording show at The Vortex on 6th Jan 2016 ft: Tori Freestone, Ivo Neame, Michael Janisch, Ted Poor and guest Brigitte Beraha.


Andre Canniere is an acclaimed trumpet player, composer and educator currently based in London. Originally from the US, he has  worked with artists such  as Maria Schneider, Bjorkestra, Ted Poor, Ingrid Jensen, Donny McCaslin and Darcy James Argue and performed at Carnegie Hall, Birdland, the London Jazz Festival, The  Hague Jazz Festival and the Rochester International Jazz Festival.

Since his arrival in the UK, Andre’s profile has been steadily rising, both as a solo artist and a collaborator. His debut Whirlwind album  Forward Space received widespread critical acclaim with a rave  review from The Guardian, a Mercury Prize recommendation and inclusion in Jazzwise Magazine‘s ‘Albums of the Year‘ and it’s follow up Coalescence, received further accolades from The Guardian and firmly established Canniere as “one of the most compelling artists on the current London jazz scene” (The 

Andre will be recording his third release for Whirlwind and presenting his new band with a special show on 6th January 2016 at The Vortex in London.

This exciting new project features musicians from both sides of the Atlantic including US drummer Ted Poor, saxophonist Tori Freestone, pianist Ivo Neame, bassist Michael Janisch and special guest vocalist Brigitte Beraha. They will be performing new music inspired by the poetry of Charles Bukowski and Rainer Maria Rilke.

Click here for more details and Tickets



Andre Canniere – trumpet

Tori Freestone – saxophone

Brigitte Beraha – vocals

Ivo Neame – piano

Michael Janisch – bass

Ted Poor – drums


Here’s ‘Sweden Hill’ from Andre’s previous album ‘Coalescence’.

Matthew Stevens and Woodwork on iTunes ‘Best of 2015: jazz albums’ list and gets ★★★★ from The Jazz Mann.

We’re delighted to announce that Matthew Stevens debut release as a leader, Woodwork appears on the iTunes ‘Best of 2015: Jazz albums’ list and the title track also appears on the list of ‘Best jazz tracks’ (scroll down to hear it).

NYC-based Guitarist and composer Stevens is heralded as one of the most promising young artists in contemporary jazz music through his associations with NEXT Collective, Christian Scott, Esperanza Spalding, Terri Lyne Carrington, Walter Smith III, and Harvey Mason. Now Stevens comes fully into his own with his debut recording as a leader.

The album’s title, Stevens says, reflects the almost tactile way in which he creates music. “It’s a metaphor for how I see myself interacting with sound. Woodwork is an act of creation in collaboration with the natural world; it invokes a sense of being handmade or one of a kind. These raw materials exist regardless of whether or not you do something with them, so I try to respect that and let the music unfold naturally.”


Here are the highlights from two recent reviews:

“Woodwork” represents a hugely impressive leadership début from Stevens who scores highly as both a guitarist and a composer. His tunes embrace a wide variety of moods and styles and the writing is reflected in the playing with Stevens delivering an impressive variety of guitar sounds, both electric and acoustic. His playing is refreshingly cliché free and on this album Stevens distinguishes himself as one of the most original guitar players around.​”
★★★★ The Jazz Mann (full review)

“This is a fine showcase for his (Steven’s) writing, playing and his sound.”
Northern Echo (website)


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The Guardian and The Observer review NYSQ’s ‘Power of 10’.

new_york_standards_920_550shar-20_s_c1NYSQ‘s latest recording, Power of 10 is their second release for Whirlwind and a tribute to their ten years of performing together.

Comprising David Berkman (piano), Tim Armacost (sax), Gene Jackson (drums) and Michael Janisch (bass), the hallmark of the group’s playing is an easy rapport with one another developed through ten years of playing together and interpreting jazz classics in a highly engaging and personal way.

They give the listener something familiar to grab on to, before throwing in the bends and quirks that NYSQ has become known for, creating modern shapes and visions of these well-known ​songs​.


Here are the highlights from the first round of reviews received for Power of 10

“Deep High Wide Sky sounds like the Lee Konitz classic Subconscious-Lee, and Doll’s Phone Cause is a similarly byzantine bopper, driven hard by Janisch’s bass-walk. All of Me has an inventively reworked harmony and fresh rhythmic edge, an ominous Lush Life finds Armacost and Berkman reacting smartly to each other, and Hidden Fondness remoulds Secret Love as a vehicle for the gleeful collective energies of all four.”
The Guardian (full review)

​”​P​henomenally bright and resourceful playing.​”
​The Observer​ (full review)

“Their fresh interpretations of standards include beguiling versions of Lush Life, All of Me, Embraceable You and a Secret Love which is transformed into A Hidden Fondness.”
Northern Echo (website)


Here’s a full length version of Deep High Wide Sky from the album:

★★★★ for Phil Robson’s ‘The Cut Off Point’ from Jazz Journal

The internationally renown guitarist Phil Robson (who recently relocated to New York after being based in London for a few decades) has received a ★★★★ review for The Cut Off Point, his organ trio album with Ross Stanley (Hammond organ) and Gene Calderazzo (drums).

He’s released four contrasting solo records to date and is known for his contribution to the long-running quartet Partisans (their release Swamp won Album Of The Year in the 2015 Parliamentary Jazz Awards in the UK). As a sideman he’s performed with Kenny Wheeler, Mark Turner, Billy Hart, Barbara Streisand, Django Bates, Christine Tobin, amongst others.

“Robson is fleet and incisive.”
★ Jazz Journal (website)

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Jazz Journal December 2015


Big News: Patrick Cornelius to release ‘While We’re Still Young’ feat: Jason Palmer, John Ellis, Nick Vayenas, Miles Okazaki, Gerald Clayton, Peter Slavov and Kendrick Scott on 12th February 2016 + Euro Tour dates

Patrick Cornelius FB


While We’re Still Young is as close to a musical self-portrait as I’m capable of creating. It’s simultaneously a multi-generational tribute album, a gathering of close friends, and a starkly personal expression of who I am as an artist and individual.”
— Patrick Cornelius

While We’re Still Young is the sixth and latest album by the critically acclaimed, award-winning saxophonist and composer Patrick Cornelius ​which ​brings together seven of the most accomplished young artists in contemporary jazz in order to breathe life into a suite of new original music inspired by the universally-treasured poetry of English literary icon A. A. Milne.

Cornelius’ personal connection to the sweet, whimsical verses in the timeless collection When We Were Very Young spans several generations. Milne’s classic trove documenting the childhood exploits of his son Christopher Robin were read first by his grandmother to his mother as a baby, and then by his mother to him and his brothers in turn. At the birth of Patrick’s own first child, Isabella, the family’s copy of When We Were Very Young was passed down to him, so that he could continue the tradition. “From the very first time I started reading these poems to Isabella, I remember an instant desire to write music inspired by each individual vignette,” the composer recalls.

Several years later, a commission from Chamber Music America’s New Jazz Works program, and a grant from The Doris Duke Foundation helped make that ambition a reality. “My goal for this project was to select a handful of individual poems from When We Were Very Young and write programmatic movements inspired by the imagery that each one evokes using the breadth of my experiences as a musician,” explains Cornelius. “I thought that if I could write music that depicts the essence and mood of Milne’s literary gems, filtered through my own voice as an emergent composer, then the project would be successful. The concept of lineage and emotional inheritance is important to this project, and when I was composing, it was important that listeners hear my musical lineage; my compositional influences.” These influences include historical giants such as Duke Ellington, Gil Evans, JS Bach, Claude Debussy, Wayne Shorter, and Charlie Parker, as well as many of Patrick’s peers, including members of his own octet.

“From the moment I conceived the project, it was obvious whose musical voices I was hearing in my mind’s ear,” Cornelius explains, regarding the easy choice for the musicians who make up the octet featured on this album. “The gentlemen performing this music are musicians I’ve come up with both in college and in New York. They’re also each highly skilled composers; artists whom I could trust to give me good artistic feedback and provide inspiration while I was working through the music.”

Patrick met drummer Kendrick Scott, bassist Peter Slavov, and trombonist Nick Vayenas while attending the Berklee School of Music in Boston and has recorded many albums with the three of them (including several of his previous solo releases) over the past 15 years. Trumpeter Jason Palmer is also an old friend and musical collaborator from Cornelius’ days in Boston. Pianist Gerald Clayton and guitarist Miles Okazaki were classmates of Patrick’s in graduate school, and tenor saxophonist John Ellis was an early inspiration from his first days in New York City. “For a project this personal I needed to surround myself with musicians I could trust as artists, and as people. We are all in this project together, and I think you can hear the camaraderie in the music.”

Cornelius names his suite, and this album, While We’re Still Young, both as obvious tribute to Milne’s treasury, and as an appeal to the listener to remember the joy and wonder of our own youth.

Patrick will be embarking on a tour of the UK to support the release of While We’re Still Young.

For full details including line-ups and how to book, visit: tour dates

February 6: Jazz on a Winter’s Weekend Festival, Southport

February 7: Herts Jazz Club, Welwyn Garden City

February 8: 606 Club, London

February 9: Ronnie Scott’s Jazz Club (early set), London

February 10: Ronnie Scott’s Jazz Club (early set), London

February 11: Soundcellar, Poole (evening)

February 12: Birmingham Conservatoire Masterclass, Birmingham (daytime)

February 12: The Jewellers Arms in association with Beat City UK Promotions, Birmingham (evening)

Three Whirlwind releases on The Telegraph’s ‘Best Jazz Album’s of 2015’ list.

Three recent Whirlwind releases: NYJO FIFTY,  String Theory and Spirit House appear on The Telegraph’s ‘Best Jazz Albums of 2015’ list. Read the full article here and find out more about the albums below:


NYJO FIFTY celebrates the 50th anniversary of a British institution, The National Youth Jazz Orchestra, who have recorded well over 40 albums to date with this their first release for Whirlwind. A double-disc album, the band’s contemporary material makes up Disc 1 with more traditional material on Disc 2. The album features special guest soloists in Mark Nightingale (trombone), Gareth Lockrane (flute), saxophonist Julian Siegel whilst guest pianist Zoe Rahman’s ‘Red Squirrel’ gets a reworking from its original piano-trio version into a full-scale big band arrangement by NYJO Artistic & Music Director Mark Armstrong.


String Theory is the third release from London-based Partikel (Duncan Eagles, Max Luthert and Eric Ford), a group that is heralded as a significant new band on the European scene. Their latest album sees them pushing their own sonic and compositional boundaries by teaming up with four respected string players of the UK scene, fusing their love of jazz, rock and world music with the textures of a string quartet to create music that showcases an array of unique soundscapes. The string quartet has been integrated seamlessly into Partikel’s trademark style of raw emotion and fiercely interactive improvisations, striking a balance between intensity and rich harmony.


A broad-thinking musician with a prolific and extensive back catalog of releases – from duo and chamber to big band formats, from West African to North Indian collaborations – renowned Washington DC-born guitarist and composer Joel Harrison now turns his attention to a quintet recording featuring the intriguing front line of trumpet (Cuong Vu) and bassoon (Paul Hanson). Completed by NYC bassist Kermit Driscoll (bass) and the influential eminence of drummer Brian Blade, Harrison has created a genuine improvisers’ record on Spirit House with a conceptual focus very much on the intuitive skills of these specific players.

Samuel Blaser: US tour starts this week and album ‘Spring Rain’ receives rave reviews from The New York Times, The Chicago Reader and The New York City Jazz Record.

Released to great critical acclaim earlier this year, Spring Rain is the new quartet album and Whirlwind debut from Swiss born and Berlin based trombonist Samuel Blaser. 

A tribute to US clarinettist and composer Jimmy Giuffre, the album features NY heavyweights Russ Lossing, Drew Gress and Gerald Cleaver.

Blaser is a musician who seeks to widen the musical scope of his instrument while retaining its tonal identity and thrives on continually developing and communicating new expressions in improvisation, keen for audiences to discover and appreciate the trombone in other forms. Spring Rain displays that intent with an immersive sound world which rewards with deeper understanding. 

Samuel is currently touring across the US, to keep updated with all Samuel’s show dates go: here

Prior to the start of the tour, here’s how the American press have received Spring Rain:

“A​n intrepid, Swiss-born trombonist living in Berlin, whose new album, “Spring Rain,” is a thoughtful and energetic tribute.​.. Blaser has a precise, expressive style on trombone and he’s an ace with multiphonic techniques, which enable him to growl chords on the instrument…”
The New York Times (full review)

“He not only sculpts meticulous improvisations that sound composed, but also assembles smart projects in which the concept never overwhelms the emotional substance… An imaginative salute to the great reedist and improviser Jimmy Giuffre​… excellent band.”
Chicago Reader (show preview)

“Spring Rain uniquely salutes a jazz hero while showcasing the skills of improvisers who propel the tradition in their own manner.”
New York City Jazz Record (website)

“Authentic in its reflection of sounds past, present and future, [Spring Rain] is another fluid example of this brass player’s flourishing talent.”
The Whole Note (website)


Here’s a  full length track, ‘Temporarily’ from the album:





The New York City Jazz Record, All About Jazz and Record Collector Magazine mark the fifth anniversary of Whirlwind Recordings with features and interviews with founder Michael Janisch.

Michael Janisch has been featured in several major music publications to mark the fifth anniversary of Whirlwind Recordings and the release of his own solo double disc project Paradigm Shift.

Described by the BBC as “The new label of the moment, releasing a diverse cross section of excellent music.”, Whirlwind will add to it’s catalogue with an exciting raft of new releases in the new year. Check here for updates.

See below for the full features in The New York City Jazz Record (website) and Record Collector Magazine (website) and click here to see the write up in All About Jazz.

Scroll down to hear a full length version of ‘Paradigm Shift Dance Party’ from Paradigm Shift and go here to read all the latest news and reviews for the album including a ★★★★ from Jazz Journal (website).



MJ Record Collector


Here’s Paradigm Shift Dance Party


Big News: Sam Crockatt to release ‘Mells Bells’ feat. Kit Downes, Oli Hayhurst and James Maddren on 29th January 2016.

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British tenorist Sam Crockatt brings the energy and immediacy of his quartet to Whirlwind on Mells Bells,​ an album of peppy live-feel studio performances which illuminate and elaborate on the leader’s eight original compositions. Crockatt (a member of London-based Loop Collective) collaborates with many of today’s increasingly successful contemporary jazz and improvisational artists, particularly revelling in the focus of this empathetic working quartet with colleagues Kit Downes (piano), Oli Hayhurst (double bass) and James Maddren (drums). Recorded over a single day off the back of a couple of successful concerts, newly-birthed concepts merge with older themes-in-waiting to create a distinct and exciting spontaneity.

Title track Mells Bells offers a glimpse into the saxophonist’s creative process. The initially cacophonic and then swirling beauty of church bell peals, witnessed from a vantage point above his Somerset home village, provided the inspiration for an outing which highlights this ensemble’s creative vibrancy and free spirit; clanging and chiming with both celebratory and audacious ebullience, it loudly proclaims the heartiness of the current British jazz scene.

Sam Crockatt’s robust and characterful tenor voice – stemming from an appreciation of the sound worlds of (amongst others) Dexter Gordon, Joe Henderson and Lee Konitz – is authoritative yet synergetic, his writing frequently inviting the freedom for musical diversions to flourish. Brightly swinging opener ‘Canon’ illustrates well the openness of the improvisational landscape, with Crockatt readily passing the baton to pianist Downes who mesmerises with a chameleonic, broad-sweeping presence across the keyboard; yet the whole is upheld by the saxophonist’s solid, memorable melodic hook and the rhythmic assuredness of Hayhurst and Maddren.

That same confidence pervades the entire album – as in ‘I Found You In The Jam’, where bassist and drummer converse intimately before opening the discussion to all, engineering the most fabulously bold yet romantic of interactions; and James Maddren’s constant percussive diversity is a delight. Crockatt’s elongated, Shorter-like phrases in ‘Breath’, supported by the Debussyian wonder of Downes’ piano, reveal shimmering watercolor hues; and purposeful ‘A Stroll On The Knoll’ combines the buoyant accessibility of a classic compositional Herbie Hancock riff with the scintillating, gruff tenor abandon of Sonny Rollins.

With this recording project, the satisfaction for Sam Crockatt has been the ability of his personnel to build on initial (sometimes sparse) compositional threads to weave together an album which coruscates with improvisational clarity and which melds so incisively: “I like to think as texturally as I can – hearing various melodies over and over in my head – to achieve as many combinations of sound as I can. And I know these guys will take my ideas off into new areas.” It’s clearly that musical trust, and the collective ingenuity, which ignites the magic of this quartet.


To mark the release of Mells Bells, Sam will be going on tour early in the new year.

Click here for more details:


8th January 2016 – Symphony Hall, Birmingham

2nd February 2016 – Pizza Express, London

3rd February 2016 – Anteros Arts Foundation, Norwich

18th April 2016 – Beaver Inn, Appledore

19th April 2016 – St Ives Jazz Club, Cornwall

20th April 2016 – Restormel Arts, St Austell

21st April 2016 – The Blue Boar, Poole

24th April 2016 – Burdall’s Yard – Bath

23rd April 2016 – The Meeting House, Ilminster

30th June 2016 – The Spin Oxford

Andrew Oliver founder of The Kora Band talks to London Jazz about the band and recent release ‘New Cities’

 The Kora Band, an ensemble which integrates the uniquely entrancing timbre of the kora — a traditional 21-string harp from West Africa — into a jazz context, present their third release New Cities and first for Whirlwind. The new album showcases a suite composed by pianist and bandleader Andrew Oliver commissioned by the 2012 Chamber Music America New Jazz Works program. The material explores the intersection between contemporary jazz and one of its main ancestors in west African Mandinka music, exploring the boundaries between these two musical cultures and honoring the jazz tradition of combining disparate musical elements into a vibrant and coherent whole.

Recently, London Jazz ran a feature on The Kora Band  in which Andrew Oliver, the founder of the band, explains how his fascination with the kora began.

“There I was, playing in Africa with a saxophonist I’d met while studying in New Orleans, Devin Phillips, when this kora player arrived and sat in with us. I knew what a kora was but the sound wasn’t what I expected. That was the initial attraction, an amazing and unique sonic experience. But then there’s also how it works rhythmically. It’s so contrapuntal, with all these independent lines that interlock. I thought, if we could find a way of integrating this instrument into our music in a more substantial way, it would be really interesting.”
Andrew Oliver

Here’s the full feature  (read)

And here’s a full length version of ‘The Contract’ from New Cities