Jazz Directors Series participants secure record deal and premiere new track

No sooner had we announced the line-up for the Courtney Pine-led Jazz Directors Series, than several of the ensemble members began making the headlines for themselves!

Tuba player and former nominee for Jazz FM instrumentalist of the year Theon Cross, saw his We Out Here contribution Brockley premiered by Stamp the Wax on Wednesday. We Out Here, a nine-track compilation album highlighting the breadth of talent within London’s jazz scene (artists like of Shabaka Hutchings, Nubya Garcia and fellow residency participant Shirley Tetteh among others) is due for release via Brownswood recordings in early February. It may in years to come, prove to be a document of similar significance to the blossoming scene as Nuggets is to the U.S. psychedelic rock scene of the late sixties, and Cross’ contributions to it are music to our ears!

Cross also, with the Shabaka Hutchings-led quartet Sons of Kemet, will release a new LP in March. The nine-track effort will be their first on the famous Impulse! Label, home to Yusef Lateef, John Coltrane and Archie Shepp during “the Thiele years” and may well catapult them to the next level. CLASH have more on the album here.

Meanwhile, electric guitarist Shirley Tetteh announced over the weekend that her group Nérija, the seven-piece outfit brought together by an initiative encouraging young women to play jazz and succeed in professional music, had signed a deal with Domino Recording Co. It will hopefully see the outfit reaching a larger and more diverse audience as well releasing a follow up to their excellent debut EP.

The forthcoming residency sees Chelsea Carmichael, who participated in the inaugural Jazz Directors Series residency with Terence Blanchard and later identified the trumpeter as one of the most inspiring musician she has thus far worked with, return to Band on the Wall. The SEED ensemble, of which she is an integral part, recently released footage from their creative residency in Dalston last year, which further demonstrates the impact funded projects are having on young musicians and the amazing work they’re capable of creating with sufficient resources and time. Carmichael will provide both baritone sax and clarinet to the ensemble palette, backing multi-instrumentalist Pine as he interchanges between instruments.