Ian Shaw

Ian Shaw

Ian Shaw

Last updated: 19 November 2008

Ian inherited a love of jazz from his late father, a cornet and trumpet player who was a fan of big band music.

But his own route to performing jazz came via the alternative comedy circuit in London, where he met and was inspired by musicians like Carol Grimes and Julie and Keith Tippett.

Regarded by many jazz aficionados as the UK's leading male jazz singer, and often likened to his hero Mark Murphy, Ian has released a string of well-received albums and was named Best Vocalist at the BBC Jazz Awards in 2004 and 2007.

Ian is respected for his ability to re-interpret not only the usual jazz standards but also rock and pop songs by the likes of Bob Dylan, Tom Waits, David Bowie and Radiohead.

He has a particular affection for the music of Joni Mitchell, and released an album of her songs, Drawn To All Things, in 2006.

Aside from performing, Ian has worked extensively as an arranger and producer with artists such as US legend Bobby Hutcherson and British vocalist Gwyneth Herbert.

More recently, he was employed as vocal coach by Charlotte Church, who joined him on stage to sing a few numbers as a surprise guest at his April 2006 gig in Cardiff.

Key works

  • Lifejacket (2008)

    With Lifejacket he's moved from Canada to Camden and he's laying his own life bare. Read BBC Music review
  • Drawn to All Things (2006)

    BBC Jazz Award winning vocalist offers his tribute to Joni Mitchell Read BBC Music review
  • A World Still Turning

    A World Still Turning (2003)

    Ian re-interprets the works of Bowie, Bob Dylan, Elton John, Randy Newman and Radiohead and others.

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