Rising stars Alex Hitchcock and Ashley Henry continue the rich tradition of Royal Academy of Music jazz alumni such as Kit Downes and Gwilym Simcock.
The ALEX HITCHCOCK QUINTET shares a musical history that stretches back over a decade, and features some of the most exciting and distinctive rising stars from London's vibrant jazz scene: trumpeter James Copus (Stan Sulzmann’s Neon Orchestra), pianist Will Barry (Jasper Hoiby’s Qualia), bassist Joe Downard (NYJO) and firebrand drummer Jay Davis (Big Bad Wolf). Taking its compositional cue from an Anglo-American range of influences including Kneebody, Ambrose Akinmusire, and Jasper Hoiby, the group showcases a spirit of openness and interaction grounded in its members' close musical relationships, while blurring the boundary between written and improvised music, and balancing harmonic curiosity with melodic impact.
'A fantastic young talent' – Helen Mayhew, Jazz FM
'Incredible young lion of the tenor sax' – Gareth Lockrane
'One to watch in 2016' – Jazzwise
Alex Hitchcock – tenor saxophone
James Copus – trumpet
Will Barry – piano
Joe Downard – bass
Jay Davis – drums
ASHLEY HENRY is one of a new generation of musicians raised with a wide range of influences, including such luminaries as Kenny Kirkland, Robert Glasper, Jason Moran, and J Dilla, yet also steeped in the traditional sounds of masters like Hancock and Monk.
As well as performing regularly with some of the UK's leading jazz musicians such as Gary Crosby, Jean Toussaint, Shane Forbes, Jay Phelps, and award-winning saxophonist Krzysztof Urbanski, Ashley has also recorded extensively with award-winning hip-hop group 'The Mouse Outfit', a collective of musicians and producers based in Manchester.
Ashley's trio are clearly influenced by hip-hop but have their roots firmly rooted in jazz – this is the next generation putting their feet down and flexing their muscles.
Ashley Henry – piano
Dan Casimir – bass
Sam Gardner – drums