interest in jazz music among teenagers in Gloucestershire is growing
rapidly. This could well be connected to the International Cheltenham
Jazz festival, which is one of the biggest jazz festivals in the
such names as Jamie Cullum, Liam Noble and John Taylor in such close
proximity, it seems almost criminal not to take full advantage of
this opportunity to see world class jazz music in Gloucestershire.
people learning instruments can now take lessons in jazz playing.
The Associated Board of the Royal Schools of Music (ABRSM) have
jazz grades 1-5 on piano, saxophones, clarinet, trumpet and trombone.
Guildhall School of Music and Drama also do jazz grades for the
flute. This gives young people the chance to learn the techniques
required for jazz playing, whereas before this oppertunity was not
introduction of jazz into the syllabus for these many instruments
may result in an increase in the number of school students taken
up musical tuition, as before they may have been discouraged by
the prospect of playing classical music.
even classical music is on the up. With the introduction of youth
orchestras around the county run by the music branch of the LEA
(Local Education Authority), young people are getting an affordable
opportunity to play real orchestral music and experiance working
in an orchestra.
are several music centres in Gloucestershire, all running on either
Friday evenings or Saturday mornings. All of these perform in their
own Music Centres Prom at Cheltenham every year, as part of the
Gloucester Youth Music festival there.
of these offer jazz bands as part of the morning or evening sessions,
which introduces yet more people to the idea of playing jazz.
are several youth jazz groups in Gloucestershire. One of these is
the Gloucester Young Jazz band, for intermediate players who want
to get experience in playing live in a big band style.
most recognised of the Gloucestershire young jazz bands is probably
the Gloucestershire Youth Jazz Orchestra (GYJO).
band of incredibly talented young musicians did no less than 45
gigs last year, directed by Tony Shepard. This band is a first class
big band with a wide variety of styles in their repertoire, from
latin to jazz standards.
are Gloucestershire's finest young musicians, who are experts on
their chosen instrument. These types of groups are the best boost
to a music students confidence and motivaton that they could ever
dream of. In this way they can all experiance the buzz of performing
this has a dual benefit to the youth jazz scene. Not only does it
provide experience for the performers in the bands, it also serves
as an inspiration for any young people who see them enjoying themselves
producing first class jazz music.
young people are more likely to happen to see these bands in concert
because the general interest in jazz music is growing fast. With
the likes of Diana Krall and Norah Jones (not to mention Jamie Cullum)
topping the not only the jazz charts, but the popular singles and
album charts as well, this is not surprising.
with this growing interest, surely there must come a demand for
more jazz programming. As a percentage of the total airtime on television
and radio, jazz music must be pretty low. Perhaps there should be
programmes about jazz musicians similar to those about Mozart and
Beethoven in recent months?
there should be a jazz music prom this year in the the BBC Proms
concert series. The listener demand is certainly there, and an increasing
proportion of that demand is from young people. There is no doubt
that this is because of the high quality of music service provision
in this area over the past few years.
the music industry should open the gates wider to get some more
variety to the British popular jazz scene as well.
trumpet legend Dizzy Gillespie
new young fans of jazz need to be made aware of a variety of jazz
styles. There are fears that the music industry will stick to the
styles that they know are selling records, rather than risking an
expansion through a new brand of album. This could lead to a narrow
view of jazz among the teenagers of today, when in fact jazz is
eclectic range of styles and personalities expanding from the one
word "jazz" can only be realised through listening to
as wide a variety of artists as possible.
British contempory scene has never been better, with Liam Noble,
Andy Sheppard, John Taylor and Denys Baptiste all releasing albums
in this category. While Jamie Cullum is without a doubt one of the
freshest new talents in the jazz and popular scenes, the fate of
this new surge of interest in jazz rests on the music industry broadening
its line of sight.
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