Recipients Announced For 2020 Parliamentary Jazz Awards
The recipients of the 2020 Parliamentary Jazz Awards were announced on Tuesday 30th June at 20:00
The Parliamentary Jazz Awards are organised by the All Party Parliamentary Jazz Appreciation Group (APPJAG) with the support of PizzaExpress Live. The Awards celebrate and recognise the vibrancy, diversity, talent and breadth of the jazz scene throughout the United Kingdom.
The award categories reflect the ever-increasing scope of talent from within the UK’s jazz scene: Jazz Vocalist of the Year; Jazz Instrumentalist of the Year; Jazz Album of the Year; Jazz Ensemble of the Year; Jazz Newcomer of the Year; Jazz Venue of the Year; Jazz Media Award; Jazz Education Award; and the Services to Jazz Award.
John Spellar MP, Co-Chair of APPJAG, said: “These Awards demonstrate the wealth of talent and commitment that exists in the British jazz scene. Now in its 15th year, the Parliamentary Jazz Awards honour the best of British jazz. MPs and Peers in the All Party Group are delighted to work with, and we are extremely grateful to PizzaExpress Live for supporting the event.”
Chi Onwurah MP, Deputy Chair of APPJAG: “This has been another really strong year for the Parliamentary Jazz Awards in terms of talent and nominations. The well deserved recipients are a veritable who’s who of names that have made a real impact on the music and helped make the UK one of the world’s leading jazz territories”.
The full list of recipients is as follows:
Jazz Vocalist of the Year
On the cusp of releasing her own music, Cherise Adams-Burnett is quickly becoming recognised as a fiercely talented vocalist and musician.
Since graduating from Trinity Laban Conservatoire of Music in late 2017, Cherise has performed at many of the UK’s most prestigious venues and festivals, ranging from the BBC Proms at The Royal Albert Hall to the Kennedy Centre in Washington D.C, along with Festival performances including the UK’s Love Supreme.
Owing much of her earlier development to the highly-regarded educational group Tomorrow’s Warriors, nowadays she is glad to be involved in developing younger musicians through the same program as a both tutor and workshop leader.
Jazz Instrumentalist of the Year
Sarah Tandy is a unique voice within the new UK jazz generation. Coming from a background which encompassed vintage jazz LPs, classical music and Coleridge poetry, her music has been shaped by London’s thriving and diverse live music scene, where jazz is the shared language in an ever-shifting musical landscape. She has swiftly risen to become one of the most in-demand players of her generation, with stints on keys for Jazz Jamaica, Nu Civilisation Orchestra, Maisha, Where Pathways Meet, Camilla George, Nubya Garcia, Nerija, Daniel Casimir, Binker Golding, Clark Tracey and many more. She is also a member of Ronnie Scott’s house band, the W3 Collective. Festival Appearances include Love Supreme Festival, Berlin Jazz Festival and two performances with her trio at the Ronnie Scott’s International Piano Trio Festival supporting Robert Glasper. In an earlier incarnation, she has also appeared as a classical soloist with the BBC Symphony Orchestra.
Jazz Album of the Year
‘Finding Home’ – Kate Williams Four Plus Three meets Georgia Mancio
Jazz pianist/composer Kate Williams was born in London into a musical family (her father is the guitarist John Williams, her mother a classical pianist). A recipient of the John Dankworth Award For Talent Deserving Wider Recognition, she has gained a distinctive reputation as both a writer and performer.
Kate has released several previous CDs, each one to critical acclaim, including ‘Made Up’ (with her septet) and ‘Smoke And Mirrors’ (with tenor legend Bobby Wellins). Both were in Mojo magazine’s top ten jazz albums in 2011 and 2012 respectively. Kate is a founder member of Way Out West, a collective of jazz musicians based in West London which has been programming regular gigs for over ten years. Kate is also an experienced educator and is currently teaching on the jazz degree courses at the Guildhall School of Music And Drama, and Middlesex University.
Kate Williams’ Four Plus Three is collaboration between acclaimed jazz pianist/composer Kate Williams, vocalist Georgia Mancio, and the Guastalla string quartet. It was launched in spring 2016 with a short UK tour and support from Arts Council England. Kate continues her longstanding musical partnership with award-winning vocalist/lyricist Georgia Mancio: Finding Home: Kate Williams’ Four Plus Three meets Georgia Mancio was premiered on 6th October 2017 at the Pizza Express Jazz Club in London. The CD Finding Home was released in summer 2019, coinciding with a 14-date UK tour which received support from Arts Council England.
Award-winning jazz vocalist, lyricist and producer, Georgia Mancio, is one of Europe’s most respected, adventurous and multi-faceted new artists. Her music references classic jazz alongside her own astonishing writing and stamped with an unfailing emotional integrity.
In 2017 she released ‘Songbook’ – co-written with Grammy-winning pianist/composer Alan Broadbent – to universal acclaim and a sold out debut at Ronnie Scott’s. Other credits include Bobby McFerrin, Ian Shaw, Liane Carroll, Gwilym Simcock, Pat Metheny (lyric approval), and the renowned ReVoice! Festival and new series Hang, Kate Williams and multiple nominations in the Parliamentary, British Jazz and Urban Music Awards.
Jazz Ensemble of the Year
Nikki Iles Big Band
Award winning Nikki Iles has been at the forefront of British jazz for over three decades, playing and recording with Anthony Braxton, Vince Mendoza, Mike Gibbs, Kenny Wheeler, Art Farmer, Julian Arguelles, Stan Sulzmann, Norma Winstone, Dave Holland, Tony Coe and Rufus Reid. Her legendary warmth and generosity as a teacher – backed up by her considerable profile as a player and composer – have inspired generations of jazz musicians. She is currently Professor of Jazz Piano at the Guildhall and the Royal Academy of Music, but she is much in demand further afield. Nikki is also a tireless promoter of younger talent, teaching regularly in Bedford schools as well as being part of the core team on regional summer courses – specifically NYJO and the NYJC. Her publishing profile – through Oxford University Press – now brings all sorts of musicians into jazz from other genres.
Nikki’s 20 piece Jazz Orchestra marks a new chapter in a long and distinguished career in British Jazz, gathering together commissions from over the years, new orchestrations of her own small band tunes and new compositions, all played by the remarkable band she has assembled. The depth and range of the exhilarating writing and arranging suggest it will be less like a debut, but more like seasoned hand and a distinctive voice, with the music bought to vivid life by a top drawer band, featuring some of the UK’s finest musicians – often bandleaders in their own right – including Gareth Lockrane, Tori Freestone, Mike Walker, Julian Siegel, Henry Lowther, Nick Smart and Karen Sharp.
Jazz Newcomer of the Year
Luca Manning is young jazz vocalist and composer from Glasgow. Luca has had the opportunity to perform at various festivals across the UK – opening for the likes of Georgie Fame and Becca Stevens. His ability as not just a consummate vocalist, but also as a gifted improviser, continues to enthral audiences and shows maturity well beyond his years. In 2018, Luca was voted ‘Rising Star’ at the Scottish Jazz Awards and was also nominated in the ‘Best Vocalist’ category.
Now resident in London, Luca is fast making a name for himself. He is in his third year at the Guildhall School of Music on the Bmus Jazz degree and already has played major London venues such as Pizza Express Jazz Club and Ronnie Scott’s Jazz Club in Soho leading his own ensembles. He has also become a vocal chair holder with the National Youth Jazz Orchestra since January 2018, a member of the London Vocal Project (2018), and in December 2017, was invited by Liane Carroll to guest on her sold-out Christmas show at Ronnie Scott’s. Luca has just released ‘A Sleepin’ Bee’ with Threebop, a vocal group where Luca appears alongside Ella Hohnen-Ford and Rosina Bullen.
Jazz Venue of the Year
PizzaExpress Jazz Club
PizzaExpress Founder Peter Boizot was a jazz lover and constantly sought ways to include music in his restaurants, whether at PizzaExpress branches from the late 1960s, and at his other ventures Pizza on the Park and Kettner’s from the 1970s. The flagship venue at 10 Dean Street, London has hosted internationally acclaimed jazz artists since its first ticketed show, Bud Freeman, on 26th May 1976, including Clark Terry, Benny Carter, Van Morrison, Carla Bley, Monty Alexander, Amy Winehouse, and thousands more. The jazz club presented the UK debuts of Gregory Porter, Diana Krall, Brad Mehldau, e.s.t., Norah Jones, among many others. The 2019 programme included appearances by John Scofield, Benny Golson, Houston Person, Joel Ross, Jakob Bro, David Benoit, Joachim Kuhn, Eddie Henderson, as well as young and up-and-coming artists, album launches, festivals like Sounds of Denmark, the Steinway 2-piano Festival, London Latin Jazz Fest, and more than 30 shows in the EFG London Jazz Festival. PizzaExpress Live also run The Pheasantry in Chelsea, and venues in Holborn, Birmingham and Maidstone, programming almost 2000 shows across the five venues.
Jazz Media Award
Corey Mwamba “Freeness” BBC Radio 3
Corey Mwamba is the presenter of Freeness on BBC Radio 3. Born and based in Derby, Dr Corey Mwamba’s commitment to jazz and improvised music in Britain and Ireland drives all aspects of his work, whether through making, presenting, promoting, or researching music.
Corey predominantly plays vibraphone and dulcimer. He is recognised as a highly creative improviser and composer working across a wide range of jazz and contemporary music. Mwamba’s distinctive approach and tone is instantly recognisable in any context: a potent blend of pure sound, highly melodic phrases and ethereal textures; barely whispered chords and ear-piercing robotic screams.
Corey won a PRSF/Jerwood Foundation Take Five artist development award in 2007; was short-listed for the Innovation category in the BBC Jazz Awards in 2008; and received nominations for “Rising Star on Vibraphone” in the DownBeat Annual Critics’ Polls.
Reduced Listening are the producers of BBC Radio 3’s “Freeness”. They are an audio company making radio, podcasts, drama and documentaries. They work with the BBC and arts institutions, alongside cutting edge musicians, artists, and with people who have a story to tell.
Jazz Education Award
Jon Eno BEM
Jon Eno was awarded a British Empire Medal (BEM) in the Queen’s Birthday Honours list for his services to jazz music education. Jon is recognised in the world of jazz education as an ambassador for youth music. He set up the East Midlands Youth Jazz Orchestra in September 2002, together with Hot House Music Schools Ltd.
Students from beginner level to some of the best in the country travel great distances to work with the Hot House team and be part of their ensembles.
Performance is encouraged wherever and whenever, from formal black tie concerts, to outdoor bandstands, to small group jazz and solo work. He is a trusted mentor figure to whom many students have turned to for support and many of his students have gained entry to the top music colleges and gone on to work as professionals in the music industry.
Jonathan also established a gospel choir and a saxophone group for adults with some musical background or none at all, that provides the same inspirational opportunities as the youth sections.
He regularly arranges fund-raising events for the Teenage Cancer Trust and Marie Curie.
Services to Jazz Award
Blow The Fuse
Blow the Fuse was formed in 1989 by musicians and composers Deirdre Cartwright and Alison Rayner who were members of the internationally acclaimed jazz group The Guest Stars. They’ve played a crucial role in raising awareness about women jazz musicians and importantly giving them support, a space and opportunity to perform in times which have been very challenging.
They have been very much part of the new resurgence of jazz musicians, which contain many talented young women. Beginning in 2012, Blow the Fuses’ Tomorrow the Moon seasons ‘one small step for women’ have featured groups led by composers Laura Jurd, Yazz Ahmed, Laura Cole, Dee Byrne, Sophie Tetteh, Lauren Kinsella, Roz Harding, Nikki Iles, Shama Rahman, Daphna Sadeh, Alexandra Ridout, Chelsea Carmichael, Camilla George and Nubya Garcia.
They’ve have managed many UK jazz tours with new musical works, innovative collaborations and educational projects and they run the Blow the Fuse record label.
Special APPJAG Award
Jazzwise magazine was launched in April 1997. It was initially funded by jazz educator Charles Alexander and featured a core group of writers including Jon Newey, who as editorial director relaunched Jazzwise in 2000 aiming to challenge the top American jazz titles for the best jazz writing and design.
In 2019 year Jazzwise celebrated its 20th anniversary, and it is the UK’s biggest selling jazz magazine in both print and digital editions and Europe’s leading English language jazz magazine. It has assembled a team of the UK’s most authoritative jazz writers, including Stuart Nicholson, John Fordham, Peter Vacher, Kevin Le Gendre, Brian Priestley and Val Wilmer, and co-founded the young jazz writer’s initiative, The Write Stuff, with Serious, designed to help new creative music writing.
Jazzwise is as deeply committed in encouraging the next generation of jazz musicians as it is about keeping the music’s colossal legacy alive and highly significant in a constantly changing musical landscape.
Jazzwise was purchased by independent publishers, the Mark Allen Group, in 2013 and formed the cornerstone of a now growing music division. Jon Newey became editor in chief and director in 2015 and promoted Mike Flynn to editor. Mike joined Jazzwise in 2006.
For further information please contact:
Tel: 0208 840 4643
Notes to editors
The Parliamentary Awards celebrate and recognise the vibrancy, diversity, talent and breadth of the jazz scene throughout the United Kingdom. The awards have been running since 2005.
The All Party Parliamentary Jazz Appreciation Group (APPJAG) currently has over 116 members from the House of Commons and House of Lords across all political parties. Their aim is to encourage wider and deeper enjoyment of jazz, to increase Parliamentarians’ understanding of the jazz industry and issues surrounding it, to promote jazz as a musical form and to raise its profile inside and outside Parliament. The Group’s officers as at the inaugural meeting on 26th February are Co-Chairs, John Spellar MP and Lord Mann, Vice Chairs, Alison Thewless MP and Chi Onwurah MP. Secretary, Sir Greg Knight MP and the Treasurer is Ian Paisley MP. Officers are: Lord Colwyn, Baroness Howe and Baroness Healy.