Six out of seven nights makes the Midland jazz week

Well, with Saturday off for other things – like going to the cinema or the theatre, or perhaps even having an evening at home, you can enjoy some jazz at minimal cost on six of the next seven days.

Jay Phelps

Jay Phelps

Today, start out at the University of Birmingham’s Bramall Music Building, where from 5pm the outstanding trumpeter Jay Phelps will be fronting a trio with young Birmingham-nurtured pianist Reuben James and bassist Mark Lewandowski. The session is in the foyer, there is coffee and cake on hand, and it’s free. More here. Then head over to the Bearwood Corks Club where Silvershine Jazz Club is presenting a jam night hosted by the late Andy Hamilton’s band, The Blue Notes. It starts at 9pm, entrance is £4 and there is more here. And a late addition that has just come to my attention: Hans Koller and crew are channelling Monk at The Yardbird this evening. Now there’s a treat! The band is called Brilliant Corners and is on at 9pm. Before that the Stella Roberts Quartet is on from 8pm or it could be the Robbie Fearon Organ Quartet, depending on which information you believe. There is definitely a Jam Session from 11pm till 2am.

Another two-parter tomorrow night, starting out at the Symphony Hall cafe bar at 5pm, where Jonathan Silk leads his increasingly electric Quintet, with bassist Chris Mapp and keyboardist Andy Bunting twiddling the knobs, while the pair of tenors, John Fleming and Nick Rundle, stick to the acoustic pads and reeds. More here. From there it’s a quick dash north to The Red Lion in Warstone Lane, Hockley, for not only M & 3 but Me & 6 as well. Me is saxophonist Joey Walter and she is joined by three more saxophonists for the first half, and added trumpet, bass and drums for the second set of the evening. This is a Birmingham Jazz club night which means members get in for free while outsiders pay £5. More here.

Chris Young

Chris Youngjay

After your day of rest, head for the Rose Villa Tavern, just up the road from The Red Lion, where drummer John Hirst presents jazz on every other Sunday evening. On the stand this week is Tumbleweed, a trio of Chris Young on alto saxophone, Andrew Woodhead on keyboard and Ben Kane on drums. It starts at 8pm, entrance is £5 and find out more about the venue and its events here.

On Mondays there is free jazz and a 2-for-1 pizza offer at Yorks Bakery Cafe, at the Colmore Row end of Newhall Street. Trumpeter Percy Pursglove and drummer Andrew  Bain mastermind these sessions and they assemble a different but equally classy band each week. The music runs from 7-9pm. More here.

Tuesday evening is Spotted Dog night, and the Digbeth pub will be squeezing in Arnie Somogyi’s Mingus Big Band for what promises to be a very special session. Double bassist Arnie is something of an authority on the music of his hero, the great Charles Mingus, and this band should test the Spotted Dog’s foundations. It starts at 8.30pm, and you are encouraged to give generously when the collection comes round. More at Jazz @ The Spotted Dog on Facebook.

Finally, on Wednesday there is another chance to hear trumpeter Bryan Corbett and bassist Chris Dodd presenting music from their recent album Green. With them will be Sean Hargreaves on keyboards and Mark Fletcher on drums, and they will all be at No 1 Shakespeare Street, Stratford-upon-Avon from 8pm. Entry is £10 (students half price) and there is more here.

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1 reply

  1. Don’t forget Sunday 9th February (and every Sunday at 5pm) – Club Bebop at the Hare and Hounds, High Street, King’s Heath .This Sunday Simeon Murray (sax), John Smith (guitar), Simon Smith (bass) and Miles Levin (drums), Search Facebook for Club Bebop or go to

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