Dizzy Reece: Routes in Jazz

Internationally acclaimed UK jazz pianist, composer and Berklee College Alumnus, Trevor Watkis, has assembled a superb Anglo-American band for an international tour to perform a special musical retrospective of Dizzy Reece, featuring new arrangements of the jazz trumpeter’s compositions.

The five date UK leg of the tour begins in Birmingham and the band be playing their only date in the Eastern region at Colchester Arts Centre Jazz Club on Sunday, January 27th.

Alphonso ‘Dizzy’ Reece (better known as Dizzy Reece), is an acclaimed jazz trumpeter who originally came from Kingston, Jamaica, leaving his homeland in 1948, at the tender age of 17, on the HMT Empire Windrush.

Dizzy has led a prolific career for over 70 years, beginning his ascent into the jazz scene by initially cutting his teeth among the best musicians in 1950s London, including Tubby Hayes, Ronnie Scott and Victor Feldman.

Working between the UK and Europe, Dizzy later relocated to the United States, settling in New York, where he still resides. Later, the likes of Miles Davis and Sonny Rollins put the word out on the Jamaican, who was subsequently sought out by a who’s who of American jazz greats.

With his unique approach to his instrument and blistering yet warm tone, Dizzy captured the attention of the iconic Blue Note label, for whom he recorded four albums – Blues in Trinity, Star Bright, Comin’ On! and Soundin’ Off.

Dizzy subsequently went on to share the bandstand with some of the greatest international jazz legends – from Dizzy Gillespie, Art Blakey, Thelonius Monk and John Coltrane, to Dexter Gordon, Hank Mobley, Donald Byrd and Miles Davis, who once said: “There’s a great trumpeter over in England: a guy who’s got soul and originality and above all, who’s not afraid to blow with fire.” Occasionally, Dizzy even depped for Miles when he was unable to make a performance.

The concert will honour Dizzy’s accomplishments and artistry, and to celebrate West Indians who, like he, departed the Caribbean on the HMT Empire Windrush and contributed to the rebuilding of Britain following its destruction during the Second World War.

Featuring the all-star line-up of Trevor Watkis (Piano), Byron Wallen (Trumpet), Ralph Moore (Tenor Saxophone), Dezron Douglas (Double Bass) andWillie Jones III (Drums), these musicians have between them performed with artists such as George Benson, Wynton Marsalis, Horace Silver, Kevin Eubanks, Kenny Garrett, Hugh Masakela, Bobby Hutcherson, Herbie Hancock, Gary Bartz, Freddie Hubbard, Stanley Turrentine, Roy Hargrove, Pharoah Sanders and Louis Hayes.

Catch Dizzy Reece: Routes in Jazz at Colchester Arts Centre Jazz Club on Sunday, January 27th. Doors open at 7.00pm and the music starts at 7.30pm.

Admission is £17, £15 Concessions and Students 2-for-1. For tickets call the Box Office on 01206 500900 or visit www.colchesterartscentre.com. 

Visit www.colchesterartscentrejazzclub.com for more information.