RIP Dennie Vidal – Sound Engineer extraordinaire

©2002-2015 Dune Music:  Jazz Jamaica All Stars in 2002

©2002-2015 Dune Music – Line-up of Jazz Jamaica All Stars back in 2002 that Dennie would have done sound for.

‪#‎RIP‬ ‪#‎DennieVidal‬ Absolutely gutted to share the news about Jazz Jamaica‘s former sound engineer, #DennieVidal who passed away this morning after losing a battle with pancreatic cancer. Just cannot believe it. He was just 51 years old. Coming on top of the death of ‪#‎RicoRodriguez‬, this is truly depressing news for all of us in Jazz Jamaica.

Don’t have a photo of him at this time – will try to root one out – but those who worked with him will be deeply upset to hear about his passing. We’re awaiting news of the funeral arrangements.

Rest in deep musical peace, Brother Dennie. You will be greatly missed. Peace and love.

RIP Coleridge Goode 1914-2015

©2014 J Irons-Coleridge Goode 29Nov14

It is with the deepest sadness that I share the news of the passing of my very dear friend and mentor, the Jamaican bassist, Coleridge Goode. He died at his home in West London following a heart attack at 8pm on Friday 2 October.

It was my great privilege to have celebrated his 100th birthday with Coleridge and his wonderful family last November, and I’d really hoped we would be marking his 101st with him this year. Sadly this was not to be.

I’ll write in more detail soon, but just wanted to share this very sad news with friends and fans of Coleridge.

My heartfelt condolences go to Coleridge’s children – daughter, Sandy and son, James. And coming not so long after the passing of Coleridge’s beautiful wife, Gertrude (23 June 2015) makes this all the more sad.

If you’d like to leave a message of condolence, please feel free to do so here under ‘Comments’ or you can use the Coleridge Goode Facebook Page set up for his 100th birthday – I’ll be passing on any messages to Coleridge’s family directly.

Rest in sweet musical peace my dear, dear friend, Coleridge. We are all going to miss you.


Groundation at the Watermill

Gary Crosby's GroundationGreat gig with my band, Groundation last night at Watermill Jazz ClubThanks to all who came out to support, and to Kathryn Shackleton and the team for inviting us to play there. Really sorry we couldn’t bring Nathaniel Facey with us this time but, unfortunately, he had to ‘throw a sickie’ due to injuring his hand. Naturally, all the band wish him the speediest recovery – I know how frustrated he feels being taken down through injury – but we give thanks and props to Binker Golding for stepping in at the last minute to ensure we could still put on a great gig for our wonderful audience in Dorking.

Binker, Shirley, Moses…peace, love and thanks!

Crescent…Our Coltrane Cycle continues tonight at Foyles

Gary Crosby 4tet play Coltrane's CrescentVery happy to be playing with Denys (Baptiste), Rod (Youngs) and Joe (Armon-Jones) tonight (Fri 25 Sep, 6.30pm-7.30pm) in the Auditorium at Foyles. We’re performing one of my favourite albums, the meditative Coltrane classic: Crescent – precursor to A Love Supreme – and you can be sure we’ll be giving it everything we’ve got. It’s just a one-hour set so come early to get a seat and catch the whole thing from start to finish. You won’t be disappointed (especially as it’s just a fiver, yes, £5 admission!).

See you there, 6.30pm sharp!

Foyles, 107 Charing Cross Road, London, WC2H 0DT

RIP Maas Rico

Rico Rodriguez- Photo ©Janine Irons

Rico Rodriguez (from a framed photo by Janine Irons)

Very sad about the passing of fellow musician and mentor, the great Jamaican trombonist, Rico Rodriguez. An alumnus of the famed Alpha School for Boys in Kingston, JA, Rico was one of the original members of my band, Jazz Jamaica back in the ’90s, his distinctive sound enhancing the authenticity of the music and helping me launch Jazz Jamaica on the international stage. The image above is a photo of the framed photo that graces our office wall, taken by my partner, Janine back in 1994.

I’m thankful – as are all Jazz Jamaica fans – for Rico’s musical contributions on three Jazz Jamaica albums that document the band’s early years – Skaravan (1993, 1996), and The Jamaican Beat: Blue Note Blue Beat Vols 1 and 2 (1994 and 1995 respectively). Some great tunes, and what an experience! Here’s one of my favourites of Rico with Jazz Jamaica – Ramblin’, penned by the great man himself:

Rico, the Man From Wareika was a guiding star who I learned from, traveled and reasoned with, and joined in cultural activities. I was so glad to be able to pay him a visit in hospital a couple of days before he passed. Sitting at his bedside, holding his hand, I had the opportunity to thank him for his musical gifts and the myriad memories – ah, so many memories! – and for his legacy, which is truly great. 

The respect and love the whole music world and beyond have shown says it all. We will miss him, and we’ll never see the like of him again.

Peace and Love Breddah Rico. RIP.

Irie Jamaica Independence Celebration at SOLD OUT Hideaway Streatham

Image: The HIdeaway StreathamPlenty fun had by all at Jazz Jamaica‘s Jamaican Independence Party at The Hideaway in Streatham on Saturday. Love and respect to our special guest, Myrna Hague from Jamaica and to Chicago bluesman, my friend Fernando Jones.

I’m always happy to be back at this club. It’s like a home from home, even if it is on the opposite side of London to where I live. It was great to see so many of you come out to celebrate. A massive THANK YOU to all those who came down to party with us!

Massive THANKS also to club owner Fran Strachan and all of her team who always work so hard to make sure our wonderful audience [because, of all the audiences…! ;-) ] and all members of the band have a great experience at the club. We’re going to be back at Christmas – date to be announced shortly so keep your eyes peeled. We’re already looking forward to it. Soon come…

Peace and love.

10 Aug: Tune in to Nérija on Jazz On 3/BBC Introducing

Nerija-Jo3-BBC IntroducingThe young musicians of Nérija make me so proud. Feels very special to see them grow up through our Tomorrow’s Warriors Young Artist Development Programme, and then see them playing at major festivals, and on the BBC! Your hard work is paying off, ladies. Keep rising! Peace and love.

10 Aug: Tune in to Nérija on Jazz On 3/BBC Introducing.