The Cal Tjader Project
A collaboration between Vibraphonist Paul Sawtell and Flutist Casey Greene has created a fresh and exciting tribute to the music of the late Cal Tjader, who was one of the pioneers of Latin Jazz in California in the 1950s. There is no other band in the UK that is playing this wonderful music with such a high standard of musicianship. This band is available for bookings and would add an element of excitement and variety to your Festival Program or your Jazz Clubs Calendar.
Cal Tjader – Vibrophone -1925 to 1982
Callen Radcliffe Tjader was born of Swedish immigrant stock in St. Louis but spent most of his professional life in California. It was on a visit to New York that he met Tito Puente and fell in love with Latin music, soon returning to California where he began mixing Latin elements with the vocabulary of bebop, something already pioneered by Dizzy Gillespie, but doing so in a cool, decidedly West Coast manner. Unlike others who abandoned the Latin idiom after its first flush of commercial success in the 1950s Tjader stayed true to the style for the rest of his creative life.
Paul Sawtell – Vibraphone
Paul has worked as a professional pianist for nearly 40 years during which time he was much in demand for BBC radio and television sessions and worked with many jazz greats such as Herb Geller, the BBC Radio Big Band, Peter King, Simon Spillett and Alan Barnes. In the last few years he has taken up a love-affair with the vibraphone and is enjoying success with his George Shearing project. Last year Paul played at the Isle of Wight and Brecon jazz festivals to packed houses and standing ovations.
Casey Greene – Flute
Australian born Casey Greene has been performing and leading his own bands in the UK since 2004 and is regarded as one of the UKs finest Jazz flautists. He has played his music at many festivals and Jazz clubs including Stratford Jazz Club, Marlborough Jazz Festival, Watermill Jazz London, Floridita London, Brignorth Jazz Festival Casey, a graduate of Sydney Conservatorium of Music, has played with the Sydney Symphony Orchestra, accompanying the legendary Ray Charles, and has appeared at many of Australia’s leading jazz venues and festivals. He has toured the Far East, Middle East and Europe and performed at California’s famed Monterey Jazz Festival. Sydney Theatre productions including Cats, Phantom of the Opera, Les Miserables, West Side Story, Chicago, Show Boat, 42nd Street and Singin’ in the Rain.
Andrzej Baranek – Piano
Andrzej Baranek is a highly regarded jazz pianist on the Manchester jazz scene, reaching the semi-finals of the Nottingham International Jazz Piano Competition in 2010. Andrzej has worked with an impressive array of artists over the years, which includes the Magic Hat Ensemble and his own trio. Aside from jazz, Andrzej is in demand as a salsa & latin-jazz pianist, and is currently busy working internationally with the highly successful vintage-themed band ‘The Retrosettes’.
Simon King – Drums
An amazing talent on Guitar, Bass, Drums and Piano Simon is a frequent collaborator with Casey on may musical projects. Simon has been involved in Jazz, improvised and recorded music for over 11 years and has played with many influential jazz musicians, including Randy Brecker, Jonny King, Pete King, Tim Garland, Alan Barnes, Jim Mullen and Norma Winstone. Simon has also recently appeared with pop singer Jane McDonald.
Eddie Mcguire – Percussion
McGuire studied with Cuban master percussionist Miguel Anga Diaz, a musician of incredible knowledge and ability who developed a complete mastery of the congas. He since has played with numerous Latin jazz artists at Ronnie Scotts, in the UK jazz festival scene and toured South Africa. A highlight of McGuire’s career was playing to sell-out audiences alongside Latin Grammy Award winner Arturo Sandoval. As a master conguero, McGuire’s sensational playing forms the rhythmic core of Quiver, giving a truly authentic Latino flavour to the music.
Ben Markland – Bass
Ben gained an MA in Composition from Birmingham University before embarking on a freelance career. Quite remarkably, the list of performers who have used him straddles jazz, pop and orchestral idioms and includes Georgie Fame, George Benson, John Etheridge, Digby Fairweather, Soweto Kinch, Clare Teal (jazz), Chris de Burgh, Roger Daltrey, Barry Manilow, Cliff Richard, The Four Tops, The Temptations, Paul Young, Katherine Jenkins (pop), and theRPO, BCMG, and Royal Scottish National Orchestra (orchestral).
Ben is also active in education, regularly running composition and improvisation workshops and lectures in music technology at Birmingham Conservatoire.
The Cal Tjader Project Band
- Paul Sawtell – Vibraphone
- Casey Greene – Flute
- Andrzej Baranek – Piano
- Ben Markland – Bass
- Simon King – Drums
- Eddie McGuire – Congas
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