International Jazz Day was launched by UNESCO in 2011, to highlight the role that jazz plays in uniting people from all corners of the globe. We’ll be bringing International Jazz Day celebrations to Hull for the second time this year, joining promoters, artists and festivals in 195 countries.
Since 2012, thousands of artists and promoters from hundreds of countries have come together on April 30th to celebrate jazz’s role in promoting dialogue among cultures, diversity, and respect for human rights and human dignity; eradicating discrimination; promoting freedom of expression; fostering gender equality; and reinforcing the role of young people in bringing about social change.
With this in mind, we wanted our International Jazz Day line-up to shine a spotlight on artists who take influences from different cultures and musical traditions and transform them into something new and original.
First up is The Refix Project, the new collaboration between two of Hull’s finest vocalists, Lyn Acton and Audrey Okyere-Fosu. Inspired by the attitude and strength of the great songstresses of jazz (Billie Holiday, Nina Simone and Ella Fitzgerald), Lyn and Audrey are refixing their usual approach to interpreting music by working with an electronic, urban, dance-music ensemble. With music by David Gawthorpe and electronics from Endoflevelbaddie’s Scott Langthorp, The Refix Project are taking influences from the worlds of jazz, urban and electronic music and mixing them up into something exciting and new that’s firmly rooted in Hull’s incredible live music scene. This debut performance will be the start of something very special…
Our headliners Panjumby represent the close relationship that the British jazz scene has with musicians from the Caribbean and Africa, revitalising itself with fresh energy and new musical ideas at every collaboration. Panjumby draw on music from Trinidad, featuring jazz, calypso and soca material alongside choice standards. Led by the tremendous lyrical phrasing and rhythmic drive of steel pan master Dudley Nesbitt, Panjumby features great improvisers and a knockout rhythm section: Richard Ormrod (saxophones, clarinet, flute), Barkley McKay (keyboards, guitar), Kenneth Higgins (electric bass) and Sam Hobbs (drums).
We asked Panjumby what International Jazz Day means to them: “Louis Armstrong said ALL music is folk music: he never heard a horse sing. For us, Jazz is what happens when you take any music from its cultural context, forge a deep personal relationship with it and then return it into circulation animated a different way, marching to a different drummer and saying what you want it to say. And that music and that spark can come from anyone in the world, irrespective of race, creed, colour or gender. International Jazz Day is about bringing all those voices together in one space, hearing all those stories and beginning to appreciate that there isn’t a single horse in the room. It’s all about the love.”
So why not come and feel the love at Hull Truck on Saturday 30th April? Tickets priced £11 and £6 for students and under-26s are available here.