The jazz highlights this week shine in smaller spaces with the accent on pub gigs, but we start in the more spacious setting of the Ikon Gallery.
David Austin Grey is presenting another in his Kontrast series, and this time it’s his own band, Hansu-Tori. With Grey on keyboards are Sam Wooster on trumpet, Nick Jurd on bass and Jim Bashford on drums.
This is an exciting and dynamic band, set for a new CD release later this year. Grey’s compositions are full of cinematic references among other things, and combine sophisticated harmony with an intrinsic funkiness.
Hansu-Tori play from 8.30pm tomorrow (Friday) in the Ikon Gallery at Brindley Place. Tickets are £10 (£5 concessions) and there is more here.
The organ-guitar-drums trio always suggests a good time, and the players on Sunday evening of these instruments are, respectively, Matt Ratcliffe, Tom Ford and John Hirst.
All three players are terrific improvisers and fine ensemble players, so expect a no-nonsense evening of exuberance.
Matt, Tom and John go by the group name Huli, and are at the Rose Villa Tavern in Hockley from 8pm. For more go to the Rose Villa Tavern page on Facebook.
On Monday jazz fans can take a breather while lovers of pop instrumentals with a distinctly 1980s character can fill Symphony Hall to thrill to the soprano saxophonics of Kenneth Gorelick, better known to his fans as Kenny G. It starts at 7.30pm, tickets are £40-45 and there is more here.
Tuesday for Birmingham jazz fans is Spotted Dog night. The Digbeth pub boasts a great atmosphere and a great dedication to fine jazz.
This week that fine jazz comes from the Tom Dunnett Quintet. Tom leads from the trombone, with Chris Young on alto saxophone, Tobie Carpenter on guitar, James Banner on double bass and Ric Yarborough on drums.
The music gets going at 9pm, a collection is taken to support the band, and there is more on the Jazz @ The Spotted Dog page on Facebook.
On Wednesday the jazz is for the under-5s with an Easter holiday Midweek Explorer session hosted by singer Sara Colman. It happens in the Symphony Hall cafe bar at 10.30am. More here.
The slightly quieter Easter week leaves time to plan ahead. If you haven’t yet booked for the Cheltenham Jazz Festival, don’t delay because some events might already be attracting the sold-out signs. The festival runs from Wednesday, April 30, to Monday, May 5. Go here to see the full programme.
On the Birmingham front, there are some exciting gigs on the horizon, including Sons Of Kemet at the Hare And Hounds on Thursday, April 24, the Kit Downes Quintet at the CBSO Centre on Friday, May 9, and Phronesis in the round at Birmingham Town Hall on Saturday, May 31. More on all these gigs here.