The 22nd British Jazz Awards

Jim Hart (photo: Jeff Hardcastle)



The winners of the 2008 British Jazz Awards, organized by Big Bear Music in Birmingham were announced in early December, but I haven't seen much coverage. The Press Release says that the public vote went through a number of different channels including Myspace and Facebook. I am told there were over 2000 responses in all.
There is a clear bias towards mainstream here, rather than cutting-edge. But as with the better-publicised annual BBC Awards, and also the PPL-sponsored All-Party Parliamentary Wards, there is a nice mixture of both young and the old on the winner board, such as:

Humphrey Lyttelton- both CD categories, for understandable reasons.

Art Themen (pictured) -Art will be 70 later this year. He had a day-job throughout his working life - and rose to be consultant in orthopaedics. Modest, he'll be as surprised as anybody to have got this accolade and this certificate.
Freddy Gavita: a lot more will be heard from this the young Norwich-born trumpeter.
Jim Hart: now stands tall for the very best of ex-NYJO, nobody would dispute he deserves this recognition.

TRUMPET
Winner: Bruce Adams
Runner-up: Guy Barker

TROMBONE
Winner: Mark Nightingale
Runner-Up :Roy Williams

CLARINET
Winner: Alan Barnes
Runner-up: Tony Coe

ALTO SAX
Winner: Alan Barnes
Runner-up: Peter King

TENOR SAX
Winner: Art Themen
Runner-Up Bobby Wellins

GUITAR
Winner: Martin Taylor
Runner-up: Jim Mullen

PIANO
Winner: David Newton
Runner-up: Gwilym Simcock

BASS
Winner: Dave Green
Runner-up :Alec Dankworth

DRUMS
Winner: Steve Brown
Runner-up Bobby Worth

MISCELLANEOUS
Winner: Jim Hart (vibes)
Runner-Up: Alan Barnes (baritone sax)

VOCALS
Winner: Val Wiseman
Runner-up :Clare Teal

RISING STAR
Winner:Freddy Gavita (Trumpet)
Runner-up: Kit Downes (piano)

BIG BAND
Winner: Back to Basie
Runner-up: BBC Big Band

SMALL GROUP
Winner: Digby Fairweather's Half Dozen
Runner-up: Alan Barnes' Ellingtonians (Stray Horns)

NEW CD
Winner: Humphrey Lyttelton - Cornucopia 2 (Calligraph)
Runner-up: Alan Barnes - Harlem Airshaft (Woodville)

REISSUE CD
Winner: Humphrey Lyttelton - Bad Penny Blues (Lake)
Runner-up: Tubby Hayes - Intensity (Ten to Ten)

3 comments:

  1. It's all very well congratulating musicians on winning this award. And I have no problem in pointing out that Freddy and Jim are excellent musicians. But what sort of award is it if the same people win almost all the time? And best vocalist is the wife of the organiser of the awards? Just because the word "British" appears in the list and they have been going for quite a long time is not enough to make one feel that it is fully representative.
    BBC and Parliamentary Awards do seem to get a good range of winners, and hold themselves up to scrutiny better.

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  2. Thank you for your comments, anonymous! I wasn't making any kind of value judgement on these awards, merely bringing attention to a story - and to additional potential exposure for some of our fine musicians- that I have not seen covered anywhere else.

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  3. Freddy Gavita will be at the Vortex on 9 March.
    As regards my comments. Your own judgements are as valid as those of the British Jazz Awards, if not more so.

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