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John Russell

John Russell got his first guitar in 1965 while living in Kent and began to play in and around London from 1971 onwards. An early involvement with the emerging free improvisation scene (from 1972) followed, seeing him play in such places as The Little Theatre Club, Ronnie Scott’s, The Institute of Contemporary Arts, The Musicians’ Co-Op and the London Musicians’ Collective. From 1974 his work extended into teaching, broadcasts (radio and television) and touring in the United Kingdom and, ever extensively, in other countries around the world . He has played with many of the world’s leading improvisers and his work can be heard on over 50 CDs. In 1981, he founded QUAQUA, a large bank of improvisers put together in different combinations for specific projects and, in 1991, he started MOPOMOSO which has become the UK’s longest running concert series featuring mainly improvised music.

ARTICLE: MULTIPLE REVIEWS

Two trio recordings with Yoko Miura

Read "Two trio recordings with Yoko Miura" reviewed by John Eyles

Tokyo-born Yoko Miura took classical piano lessons from the age of 5 to 18. Inspired by players such as Thelonious Monk, Eric Dolphy and Paul Bley she took classes in jazz. She was soon playing concerts in Japan with players like guitarist Ryouichi Saito, percussionist Jyunzo Tateiwa and shamisen & bassist Noribumi Uchida. By 2001 she ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Keune, Russell, Schneider, Lovens.: Nothing Particularly Horrible: Live in Bochum ‘93

Read "Nothing Particularly Horrible: Live in Bochum ‘93" reviewed by John Eyles

Recorded live in concert, in October 1993, at Museum Bochum, during the Ruhr Jazz Festival, this album is not a reissue but is being released for the first time, its wryly amusing title indicating that it has been declared fit for public consumption. In fact, the album's four tracks, being the only recordings of this Anglo-German ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Phil Durrant & Martin Vishnick: Rifinitori di momenti

Read "Rifinitori di momenti" reviewed by John Eyles

The fact that this duo exists is a testament to the network of improvised music workshops and venues that thrive in London, with interested musicians often hearing about them by word of mouth. One such workshop is Skronk, which is run every fortnight or so by New Zealand expat and saxophonist Rick Jensen, who welcomes all ...

ARTICLE: LIVE REVIEW

Walthamstow Jazz Festival 2019

Read "Walthamstow Jazz Festival 2019" reviewed by Luke Seabright

Walthamstow Jazz Festival London February 16, 2019 If you're not from jny: London the name Walthamstow most likely means nothing to you, unless perhaps you admire the work of designer and craftsman William Morris. Even to most Londoners it is probably little more than the fabled end of the Victoria ...

ARTICLE: MULTIPLE REVIEWS

Evan Parker and Paul G. Smyth on Weekertoft

Read "Evan Parker and Paul G. Smyth on Weekertoft" reviewed by John Eyles

In 2016, English guitarist John Russell and Irish pianist Paul G. Smyth set up the independent Weekertoft label to release music they had been involved in, including recordings made at Russell's longstanding monthly Mopomoso concert series or annual Fete Quaqua festival. As the label reached its third anniversary, its catalogue was dominated by two large sets--the ...

John Butcher

Read "John Butcher" reviewed by John Eyles

In the Building a Jazz Library article on Evan Parker, it says that seasoned Parker followers would describe him as the finest improvising saxophonist of his generation. Curiously, many of those same people would use exactly that phrase about John Butcher. The simple explanation for this apparent contradiction is that we are talking about two generations; ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Stray: Into Darkness

Read "Into Darkness" reviewed by John Sharpe

Two old masters and two younger pretenders unite to produce Into Darkness. Saxophonist John Butcher and guitarist John Russell were both part of the so-called second generation of improvisers, following in the wake of progenitors such as Evan Parker, Derek Bailey and John Stevens. Joining them in a continuous 51-minute live performance from London's Iklektic in ...

ARTICLE: ALBUM REVIEW

Henry Kaiser: Friends & Heroes: Guitar Duets

Read "Friends & Heroes: Guitar Duets" reviewed by Roger Farbey

There a real Smörgåsbord of pieces on Henry Kaiser's Friends & Heroes: Guitar Duets. They are stylistically varied improvisational vignettes ranging from the eccentric “Three Languages" with Fred Frith to the heavy electric blues of “A Mighty Fire" with Knut Reiersrud. There's also prog(-ish) rock on “Harmony Jam" with Nels Cline and there's a kind of ...

ARTICLE: LIVE REVIEW

PunktFestival 2017

Read "PunktFestival 2017" reviewed by Luca Vitali

Punkt Festival Kristiansand, Norvegia Varie sedi 31.8-2.9.2017 Come sempre Punkt è un festival fuori dall'ordinario e all'insegna dell'imprevisto e dell'imprevedibile. Una sorta di Industria 4.0 della musica: fuori dal “circolo" dei tour estivi, tipico dei festival jazz, e poco interessato a fotografare il passato e il presente, è invece molto attento ...


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