Projects

The Tony Woods Project

The Avalon Trio

Kwartet with Tim Whitehead

Penelope Dreaming

The Lyric Ensemble and Lyric Trio

Spontonality

Jazz Ceilidh Project

The Runaway Wedding Band

Nette Robinson’s Little Big Band

NTJO. Nette and Tony’s Jazz Orchestra

The Tony Woods Project.

 The Project has toured the UK many times with the support of Jazz Services, and has performed at numerous jazz festivals including Swanage, Richmond, Ealing, Manchester, Croydon, Ascot, Teignmouth and London venues including the Vortex, Pizza Express Dean St., The Crypt, the 606 Club, and Lauderdale House.  The Project has had frequent air play on BBC Radio 3, Jazz FM, UK Jazz Radio and has released three albums (High Seas-FMR- in 1997, Lowlands-Basho in 2004 and Wind Shadows-33 Records-in 2009)  all of which have received great reviews. The albums all feature melodic, folk inspired, quirky and uplifting compositions from Tony and exciting solos from the whole band. One aspect of the music is the way collective improvisations (reminiscent of early forms of jazz where the instrumentalists weaved their lines around each other) are incorporated into bigger structures. The band  features  Mike Outram on guitar and Milo Fell on drums, and long time associates Robert Millett on vibes and Andy Hamill on bass, all of whom play with wonderful group empathy and respect for each other and the music.

Band Biographies

Mike Outram: guitar. One of the UK’s foremost guitarists. Mike has worked with Herbie Mann, Dave O’Higgins, Cinematic Orchestra, Martin Speake, Nikki Iles, Stan Sulzmann, Photek, Asaf Sirkis, Gwyneth Herbert and has played with guitarists Martin Taylor, Jim Mullen and John Etheridge. He has toured internationally, recorded over 30 cds for Universal, Sony, Candid records and others and won the ‘Best Group in Europe’ award with Grooveyard in Spain. Recently activities include; a European tour with soul-funk legend Carleen Anderson, performances with Rolling Stones saxophonist Tim Ries and Sebastiaan Cornelissen’s quartet, recordings with jazz folk songstress Gwyneth Herbert and Asaf Sirkis’ group and playing classical guitar at the Sao Paulo Film Festival, Brazil, for composer Laura Rossi. Mike is also Guitar Professor at Trinity College of Music, The Royal Academy of Music, Middlesex University, Thames Valley University, Guitar-X, The Royal Welsh college of Music and Drama and has also taught for the Glamorgan and Wavendon summer schools, ‘Live Music Now’, The Purcell School, The Guildhall School of Music and Drama and has given numerous workshops and clinics internationally. Website – www.mikeoutram.com

Robert Millett: vibraphone. Robert trained at the Royal College of Music as an orchestral percussionist. He has worked in many different settings including Ballet Rambert, English National Touring Opera, Tim Whitehead’s Homemade Orchestra, contemporary music group Icebreaker, The London Philharmonic Orchestra and others. Recent solo work includes a recital in Cambridge and performances at the Isleworth Festival. Robert has undertaken education and community projects for several organisations, and has written the music for several dance pieces created by Rambert’s education team. He teaches percussion and music technology at the Lady Eleanor Holles school in Hampton

Andy Hamill: double bass. Since moving to London from Scotland in 1993 Andy has worked with jazz singers Mark Murphy, Annie Ross, and Salena Jones, and has many recording credits to his name, including ‘Two Pages’, and ‘Creating Patterns’ with 4 Hero, ‘Beyond Skin’ with Nitin Sawhnie, ‘June Babies’ with Rebecca Hollweg, ‘Live at Ronnie Scott’s’ and ‘Heart of the Sun’ with Theo Travis…

Milo Fell: drums. Milo was born in London in 1970. In 1989 he moved to Manchester where he played and recorded with John Ellis, John Thorne, Rare Birds, Gharham Clarke and various jazz, fusion, funk and latin groups. He also played with visiting soloists including Tim Whitehead who invited him to record a CD (Personal Standards) and play at Ronnie Scott’s. He moved back to London in 1999 and since then has played with The Cinematic Orchestra, prize-winning Amsterdam-based band Dalgoo which toured Russia in autumn 2002 and ‘Tides’ with Colin Riley and Tim Whitehead.

The Avalon Trio

This improvising ensemble was formed to celebrate the music of English classical composers of the twentieth century and to present to listeners its own unique homage to this particular period of creative and melodic outpouring.  The material of the trio includes music by Delius, Finzi, Walton, Ireland, Vaughan Williams as well as original works. Through a process of research and analysis the Avalon Trio has found harmonic connections between the music of these great masters and contemporary jazz. Furthermore the short song forms and the great melodies of instrumental works (both orchestral and chamber) lend themselves particularly well to improvisation, just as the ‘standards’ of the American song book have been used as vehicles for improvisation by jazz musicians since the1930′s.   The debut album “Forlana” will be released in May 2011.

Pete Churchill: piano. Pete has worked as a pianist and singer with many of the leading jazz names in the UK and abroad, including the ‘Kenny Wheeler Vocal Project’ with the wonderful Norma Winstone. His work with Kenny both as a singer and arranger has led in recent years to high profile appearances at the Berlin jazz festival and the ‘Summer Jazz’ festival in Finland. Pete is also one of this country’s foremost Jazz educators and has been a Professor of Jazz studies at the Guildhall since 1988 where his harmony classes have become legendary. He also directs and writes for the Guildhall vocal ensemble. He has recently joined the faculty at the Royal Academy of Music to teach jazz composition and is also currently a Senior Lecturer in Jazz Studies at Middlesex University.

Robert Millett: percussion – see above

 Kwartet
A dynamic, chordless quartet featuring the amazing Tim Whitehead (tenor sax), Patrick Bettison (electric bass) and Milo Fell (drums). Tony and Tim have played together a lot so this is a great setting for them to “run wild” both on original tunes and standards. The debut album “Seventh Daze”  was released in May 2012 and has been getting great reviews (see Reviews).

Penelope Dreaming

An exciting new project featuring Tony’s  settings of poetry,  electronic soundscapes, Nette’s cool vocals and freewheeling improv.

The Lyric Ensemble  

The Lyric Ensemble and Lyric Trio were formed by Michael Garrick (MBE)  to feature his settings of poetry (Shakespeare, Blake, Browning, and some of his owen). Sadly Michael died in 2011, but his music lives on. The band now features the wonderful Nikki Iles on piano, Nette Robinson (vocals), Tony Woods (saxes), Matt Ridley (bass), Chris Nicholls (drums). For more info on the Lyric Ensemble/Trio visit www.netterobinson.com

Spontonality

An amazing week of truly free improvisation in the Kestle Barton Art Gallery. With Tim West (piano), Matthew Barley (cello), Julian Bliss (clarinet)  and Torbjorn Hultmark (trumpet and electronics)

Jazz Ceilidh Project

Jazz/folk fusion Ceilidh Band led by Tony and his nephew Owen Woods (melodeon) with Dave Powell (tuba) and Terry Knight (drums).

The Runaway Wedding Band

Bulgarian Wedding music and Bebop ! Mad musical fun.

Toby Nowell-Trumpet, Pete Watson-Accordion, Paul Tkachenko -Sousaphone, Guy Schalom -percussion

Nette Robinson’s Little Big Band

Legendary Big Band charts from Count Basie and Duke Ellington reduced to quintet of saxophone, trombone, bass, drums and vocals.

NTJO

Nette and Tony’s 17 piece Jazz Orchestra featuring arrangements of Tony’s compositions. With Mike Outram, Tim Whitehead, Chris Biscoe, Pete Hurt, Martin Shaw, etc etc.

  •  Other Performances and Recordings –
  • Dave Jones’ Affinty
  • Anamcara – Vocal trio performing Georgian folk songs with saxophone improvisations.
  • 2011 Performance of Harvey Brough’s Requiem in Blue
  •  Playback South – Improvised theatre group.
  • Blue of a Kind – A tribute to ‘Kind of Blue’.
  • Recorded “The Little Big Band Plays” with Nette Robinson’s Little Big Band and toured with Jazz Services.
  • Numerous performances with the Michael Garrick Big Band and Mike Garrick/Nette Robinson ensemble.
  •  Featured soloist on recordings “Remembered Time” (Michael Garrick/Nette Robinson Ensemble) and “Tone Poems” (Michael Garrick Big Band.)
  • Premiered and recorded Luke Anthony’s Saxophone Concerto.
  •  Premiered  Frank Griffith’s ‘Nine Tales for Nonet’ at the Interfaces Symposium at Brunel University, with Henry Lowther, Steve Waterman, Alex Mcguire.
  • Performed Rod Paton’s Jazz Mass for choir, organ and jazz ensemble at the Turner Simms concert hall in Southampton.
  • Gigs with Gail Thompson’s Jazz Africa on her CMN tour.
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