Seven Steps to Heaven

Large themen kole sextet  mike o brien

'His tenor solos stood out a mile, conveying a precociously warm tone and a natural fluent phrasing which seemed to exude jazz history'.
Selwyn Harris on Xhosa Cole, Jazzwise

...and talking of hot tickets, there can't be many more smokingly ablaze than new star tenorist Xhosa Cole, winner of the BBC Jazz Award in 2019.
Just 22 years of age, Midlands-born Cole is a musician firmly of his time, described in Jazzwise magazine as 'looking out from the past towards the future.' With an eye on what's to come he's already expressing an interest in electronics and mixing genres, but for this gig he's operating smack in the middle of the great jazz tenor saxophone tradition; indeed, he's sharing a stage with two men who represent exactly that, fellow tenorists Art Themen and Mornington Lockett.
Clark Tracey has long delighted in engineering these cross-generational jazz trysts, thumbing his nose at all those who think generational opposites can't find common ground, but tonight's gig promises to be something special. Cole, Themen and Lockett are all exceptional tenor saxophonists, separated by nothing more than age and experience (Art is almost sixty years Xhosa's senior!). Musically, they'll be talking the lingua franca of Hard Bop, tackling compositions by heroes like Sonny Rollins, Dexter Gordon and Hank Mobley.
It could well be the saxophone summit of the year.

< Back to festival

Sunday September 29, 8:00pm

  • > Art Themen - Reeds
  • > Xhosa Cole - Tenor Saxophone
  • > Mornington Lockett - Tenor Saxophone
  • > Nigel Price - Guitar
  • > Noah Stoneman - Piano
  • > Arnie Somogyi - Double Bass
  • > Clark Tracey - Drums