Greetings and Welcome to kathydyson.co.uk
The purpose of this site is to tell you about my music, research and teaching practice. My hope is to make it a hub for musicians, audiences and students to use and contribute to in order to create more gigs and develop more support.
The Northern School of Jazz
The Northern School of Jazz is a not-for-profit education project which opened in September 2012 in Manchester. The aim is to provide an alternative way of accessing jazz education in the North of England and it will run classes and workshops for young people, adults and teachers. The idea is to learn through listening and playing your instrument and to focus on practical music skills supported by harmony, theory, aural and transcription. We are opening a weekend school for the serious student focusing on intensive jazz improvisation training for the +16 age group; running 3 levels of Trinity /Guildhall Jazz Diploma preparation including one for postgraduate music students who want to change direction or hone their skills; continuing professional development courses for classroom and instrumental music teachers in jazz and improvisation; evening classes for adults and ensembles and jam sessions throughout the week. Please see the new website: http://www.theNorthernSchoolofJazz.com for more information or phone me on:
0794 130 1799.
"Harlequin" by The Jazz Department
Our new album has arrived: 'Harlequin'.
The Jazz Department is a new band, set up to play a diverse range of jazz-based music: originals, standards, pops and soul tunes and everything in between. Based in the North, it’s members hail from Manchester, Leeds and Bradford and five of them were once part of the same jazz department, hence the name. The album is intended to showcase the talents of all of the players and to create a gentle, space filled and light atmosphere where the music can breathe. There are two originals, Harlequin and Wishful Thinking, both written by me, which add a harmonic and dynamic contrast to the standards, interspersed with a classic Bacharach pop tune - The Look of Love, beautifully sung by Josie Smith, who manages to both echo the sweetness of the original and to make it her own. The album starts, unusually, with a ballad: But Beautiful which sets the tone of the album and features the lyrical and inventive piano playing of Mark Donlon, whose solos are particularly memorable. John Dyson is featured throughout on tenor and alto, with a particularly expressive pure and warm tenor sound on the ballads and a creative fluency on the alto- especially on Like Someone in Love and Stella By Starlight. Max Sterling on double bass and Steve Hanley on drums are excellent accompanists and soloists; consummate listeners who respond sensitively to every soloist’s rhythmic and melodic nuance with supportive and interesting musical responses.
It has been a pleasure in every way to work with the musicians featured here both in the studio and outside. I hope that the enjoyment is evident in the music and that you can share it. The album costs £10+ postage and is available from us. Please use the contact form to order one. The launch will take place in December: watch this space for more details.
Emily Remembered Tour
We are just back from our nine date tour with Emily Remembered that took in London, Leeds, the Wirral, Wiltshire, Somerset, Devon, Cornwall and Somerset. There were appreciative audiences throughout and lots of interest in the Emily Remembered CD. Highlights for me included a lovely church gig at the Teignmouth Jazz Festival on the afternoon of the 19th November, with an enthusiastic and knowledgeable crowd and a fine acoustic, and the last gig at St Ives. Sarah P joined us for the duo gigs and developed some more poetry and jazz numbers including Dust, which was wholly improvised, and Penwith Strolling which we performed at the St Ives jazz club - celebrating the local scenery to one of my tunes. Winston Clifford and Alison Raynor also joined us two gigs at the Beaver Inn at Appledore and St Ives, and Buster Birch joined us at the Vortex in London. Another highlight was Winston scat-singing several choruses of All the Things You Are at the Cornwall gigs which was quite amazing. Thanks to everyone who came down to see us and bought CD's; to all of the promoters who are often working for free and tirelessly all year round to keep jazz live; and also to all of the friends of Deirdre and Sarah who put us up and generally looked after us. It's great to play every night - something which seems to be getting more and more difficult to achieve. Thanks also to Jazz Services for Touring Support.