Skip to main content

National Jazz Trio of Scotland - Bill Wells Gets Busy

The National Jazz Trio of Scotland has never really been a trio. Nor
has Bill Wells’ cheekily-monickered combo ever played jazz in the
conventional sense. With a first album of original material, the
waggishly christened Standards Volume Two, imminent, Wells and his
reconvened NJT play DIY promoters Tracer Trails Christmas shindig to
showcase a more vocal-based direction care of Golden Grrrls singer
Lorna Gilfeather and Findo Gask/Francois and the Atlas Mountains
vocalist Gerard Black.

“It started off as one thing and became something else,” Wells says of
the NJT’s metamorphosis. “There’s never any definite idea of what we’re
doing, and it becomes what it becomes.”

With his high-profile collaboration with Aidan Moffat ongoing, the
Tracer Trails bill will also feature Pianotapes, Wells’ collaboration
with Stefan Schneider of German electronicists To Rococco Rot, and
Belle & Sebastian guitarist Stevie Jackson, who Wells may also end up
playing with.

Wells’ prolific back-catalogue has long straddled indie and jazz worlds
to form a deliciously unclassifiable body of work. A new album,
Lemondale, was recorded in Japan with the cream of the country’s
underground alongside similarly versatile American émigré Jim O’Rourke.
Live, a Celtic Connections show with Bridget St John and Lol Coxhill is
pending.

“I always wish I’d done more,” says Wells, “mainly because I started
late, but for me it feels like I’m still catching up. But if you’ve got
all these ideas, then you’re going to be releasing more records than
most people.”

Wells & Moffat, The Arches, Glasgow, December 20th; National Jazz Trio
of Scotland / Pianotapes / Stevie Jackson, Old St Paul's Church,
Edinburgh, December 21st

The List, December 2011


ends

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Clybourne Park

Adam Smith Theatre, Kirkcaldy Four Stars
It’s a case of whoops, there goes the neighbourhood twice over in Rapture Theatre’s revival of Bruce Norris’ Pulitzer Prize-winning play, which opens in 1959 in the same Chicago suburb where Lorraine Hansberry’s drama, A Raisin in the Sun, which appeared that year, is set. Here, Robin Kingsland’s Russ and his wife Bev, played by Jackie Morrison, are preparing to move out of their now almost empty des-res following a family tragedy.
Unknown to them, the bargain basement price tag has enabled a black family to move in, with Jack Lord’s uptight Karl a self-appointed spokesperson for the entire ‘hood. Russ and Bev’s black maid Francine (Adelaide Obeng) and her husband Albert (Vinta Morgan), meanwhile, bear witness to a barrage of everyday racism. Fast forward half a century, and a white family are trying to buy the same house, albeit with a heap of proposed changes which the black couple representing the block’s now much more diverse community aren’t…

Michael Rother - Sterntaler at 40

"There's so much to do," says an uncharacteristically flustered Michael Rother. The normally unflappably beatific German guitarist, composer and former member of Neu! and Harmonia, who also had a stint in a nascent Kraftwerk, is packing for live dates in Russia and the UK, including this weekend's show at the Queen Margaret Union in Glasgow.
"It has always been my choice to take care of these things myself and not have a manager," he says. "Somehow for me the independent aspect of doing things is really important, but it has its disadvantages."
As well as playing selections from Neu! and Harmonia, the trio he formed with Dieter Moebius and Hans Joachim Roedelius of Cluster, Rother's Glasgow date will see him play a fortieth anniversary rendering of his second solo album, Sterntaler, in full. Rother will be accompanied by guitarist Franz Bargmann and drummer Hans Lampe, the latter of whose musical involvement with Rother dates back to Neu! days, …

Kieran Hurley – Mouthpiece

Things have changed since Kieran Hurley first began writing the play that would become Mouthpiece, which opens at the Traverse Theatre in Edinburgh this weekend. At the time, Hurley was, in his own words, “quite new on the scene.” As a writer and performer, he had already scored hits with Beats and Chalk Farm, two pieces that put him on the map with a new generation of theatre-makers steeped in an equally new wave of grassroots opposition that drew from the iconography of revolutions past. Where Beats looked at the politicisation of 1990s club culture, Chalk Farm, co-written with AJ Taudevin, focused on a teenage boy caught up in the 2011 London riots.
More plays followed. Some, like Heads Up used the same solo story-telling aesthetic to look at an everyday apocalypse. More recently, Square Go, written with Gary McNair, dissected toxic masculinity through a school playground fight.
All the while as Hurley developed as a writer, from new kid on the block to established provocateur, this…