Wil Sargisson Trio

WJC presents a rare concert featuring one of New Zealand’s finest pianist. Wil Sargisson began piano lessons at age 5 in his home town of Napier, New Zealand. By age 13 he was performing solo at NZ’s National Jazz Festival in Tauranga, the youngest person ever to do so. In 1998 he released his debut album Steppin’ Out, which received top reviews in NZ and Australian media. NZ Musician Magazine called it: “an inspired and excellent release.” In the same year he was invited to perform in New Orleans at the ‘Piano Night’ concert, part of the legendary New Orleans Jazz & Heritage Festival. He received a massive ovation and was invited to perform many times. In 2008 Wil moved to Australia and soon began performing with the legendary Australian jazz group Galapagos Duck, plus luminaries that include Renee Geyer, Deni Hines, James Morrison, Jim Kelly, and Greg Lyon. Since moving to Australia he has performed at many jazz and blues festivals and has been active as a session musician, contributing to over 30 albums recorded by various artists.

The trio will play a selection of tunes by the likes of Oscar Peterson, old Harlem stride ala Fats Waller & James P Johnson,  Chicago Boogie Woogie, and a handful of original compositions.

Wil Sargissonn Trio
Featuring
: Wil Sargisson (d), Daniel Yeabsley (b), Mark Lockett (s) 
Date: Thur 27 Feb 2021, 7.30pm
Venue: The Library Bar, Courtney Place
Price: Tickets available on Eventfinda, Door sales: General $20, WJC members $15, and Students with ID $10

Sunday Sessions at the Cross

Each week the session features compositions by a great jazz artist. The house band open with a couple of tunes and then musicians are invited up to join in.

Featured composer: John Coltrane
House Band: Callum Allardice (g), Emma Hathaway (B), Mark Lockett (D)
Date and time: Sunday, 21 Feb 2021, 2.30-4.30pm
Venue: The Southern Cross, 39 Abel Smith Street, Te Aro

John Rae Trio

Wellington Jazz Cooperative presents outstanding Kiwi jazz group The John Rae Trio.

Expatriate Scots drummer Rae, a top flight composer, musician and band leader, will join forces for the WJC concert with vaunted saxophonist, flautist, and composer Lucien Johnson and double bass player Patrick Bleakley. Rae, Johnson and Bleakley were leaders and composers of The Troubles, a premier Kiwi jazz nonet that initially had been an earlier incarnation of the present trio.

Rae recorded his first album at 16 alongside acclaimed saxophonist Tommy Smith and has since recorded over 80 albums as a leader and sideman, including the 2003 and 2004 BBC Jazz Album of the Year.

Johnson, a saxophonist and composer from Wellington, lived in Paris for six years where he formed a trio with veteran American free jazz bass player Alan Silva and Japanese drummer Makoto Sato. He composed music for plays and short films, toured India with a clown troop, wrote music for a theatre show in Haiti, and in New Zealand played with The Black Seeds, The Yoots, Lord Echo, Jonathan Crayford Quartet, Hollie Smith, Leila Adu, Norman Meehan and Natalia Mann, as well as leading various groups under his own name

Bleakley has been one of the most sought after bass players in New Zealand since the 1970s. His baptism of fire came through meeting iconic musician and actor Bruno Lawrence who soon inducted Bleakley into his band Blerta. During the 70s he played with several other well-known groups such as Mammal, Rough Justice and Spatz and was for a time in the quartet of leading Australian saxophonist Bernie McGann. Bleakley took a break from music before he returned to playing bass in the 1990s, touring with Lawrence and pianist Jonathan Crayford in the band Jazzmin. He has also played as part of The Razorblades, Sanctus and Village of the Idiots.

John Rae Trio
Featuring
: John Rae (d), Patrick Bleakley (b), Lucien Johnson (s) 
Date: Thur 18 Feb 2021, 7.30pm
Venue: Lovebite, 2 Forresters Lane
Price: Tickets available on Eventfinda, Door sales: General $20, WJC members $15, and Students with ID $10.

Sunday Sessions at the Cross

Each week the session features compositions by a great jazz artist. The house band open with a couple of tunes and then musicians are invited up to join in.

Featured composer: Irving Berlin
House Band: Duncan Haynes (P), Daniel Yeabsly (B), Mark Lockett (D)
Date and time: Sunday, 14 Feb 2021, 2.30-4.30pm
Venue: The Southern Cross, 39 Abel Smith Street, Te Aro

Sunday Session at the Cross

Each week the session features compositions by a great jazz artist. The house band open with a couple of tunes and then musicians are invited up to join in.

Featured composer: Benny Golson
House Band: Ayrton Foote (P), Daniel Yeabsley (B), Mark Lockett (D)
Date and time: Sunday, 7 Feb 2021, 2.30-4.30pm
Venue: The Southern Cross, 39 Abel Smith Street, Te Aro

Duncan Haynes Trio

The Wellington Jazz Cooperative is pleased to present the Duncan Haynes Trio at its first concert for 2021 and the first concert at its new venue Lovebite.

Having recently returned to Aotearoa after two decades away, Duncan is one of New Zealand’s finest jazz pianists. Having lived, performed and recorded in the UK, Europe, the USA and South America, he brings a wealth of experience and an international vision to his music.

Duncan teams up with Mark Lockett (drums) and Seth Boy (bass) to present a concert of original compositions drawn from his 5 studio albums, highlighting the power, flexibility and sheer beauty that a piano trio can achieve.

Duncan Haynes Trio
Featuring
: Duncan Haynes (p), Mark Lockett (d), Seth Boy (b) 
Date: Thur 4 Feb 2021, 7.30pm
Venue: Lovebite, 2 Forresters Lane
Price: Tickets available on Eventfinda, Door sales: General $20, WJC members $15, and Students with ID $10.

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Review of Duncan Haynes Trio – by Alex Wolkin

Duncan Haynes Trio, comprising Haynes on electric piano, Seth Boy on double bass and Mark Lockett on drums presented two sets of exciting, rhythmically and harmonically sophisticated original contemporary jazz last Thursday. The first of the Wellington Jazz Cooperative’s fortnightly showcases for the year, the event took place in the low key kitsch atmosphere of intimate new venue (and former Motel Bar) Lovebite, tucked away up a somewhat grungy flight of stairs on Forresters Lane just off Tory Street. The tunes, composed by Haynes, a local who has spent many years working in London, Paris and Peru, showcased his relentless development of improvisational material, drawing on both post-bop (Kenny Werner comes to mind) and perhaps contemporary eurojazz sources. Haynes’ playing frequently drifted into an advanced chromatic or freely triadic take on tonality, his playing producing crystalline textures shot through with deft harmonic twists and turns.

Lockett and Boy provided ample muscle in driving the tunes, navigating as they did various subtle time signature changes and other tricky rhythmic devices. The trio’s playing and the compositions did not, however, lack expressive nuance, as evidenced by contemplative moments such as the third tune, ‘Reflections’. The closing tune of the first set certainly put the rhythm section through their paces, alternating between sections composed of syncopated rhythmic unison hits, and hard-swinging sections that used metric modulations to shift between tempi a little like changing gears on a push-bike. Set two opened with an extended solo piano improvisation by Haynes, which conjured impressions of Debussy or Scriabin, before merging into a moody minor-key ballad as the rhythm section joined. Boy’s expressive solo was especially notable here, as was his warm rounded tone throughout. The following tune saw Boy wearing quite a different musical hat, producing a rhythmically captivating solo composed from syncopated motivic fragments. Lockett, who founded WJC about four years ago, added a compellingly raw edge with his playing in general but also demonstrated a knack for pulling back and delivering beautifully subtle brushwork where it was called for, especially during this set. Of the two closing tunes, the first was a kind of samba that built to a powerful climax with the rhythm section creating an intriguing feeling of subduction or being pulled under the carpet. The final tune once again showcased the ensemble’s ability to turn on a dime rhythmically, alternating as it did between a quasi-chitarra ballad form and fast rhythmically complex convulsions. A great start to the WJC’s 2021 series.

– Alex Wolken

The Duncan Haynes Trio
WJC Headline Series 2021
Lovebite, Wellington
4 February 2021