Preview: This week's gig guide

PUBLISHED: 10:25 12 June 2009 | UPDATED: 15:40 29 October 2010

Simon Parkin


Norwich Playhouse, tonight

It is no surprise that Jacqui Dankworth is known as one of the finest singers of her generation. Daughter of Dame Cleo Laine and Sir John Dankworth, her musical pedigree was never in doubt, however, it was several years before Jacqui was persuaded to take up the microphone.

Simon Parkin


Norwich Playhouse, June 12

It is no surprise that Jacqui Dankworth is known as one of the finest singers of her generation. Daughter of Dame Cleo Laine and Sir John Dankworth, her musical pedigree was never in doubt, however, it was several years before Jacqui was persuaded to take up the microphone.

Her career path began as an actress, including stints at the RSC and the National Theatre. Since directing her attention to jazz, she has performed alongside internationally acclaimed artists such as Björk, Courtney Pine and Elvis Costello.

Ahead of the release of her new album, Back To You, her first in five years, the singer arrives in Norwich as part of a tour with a group of the finest British musicians; including Chris Allard on guitars, Malcolm Edmonstone at piano and keyboards, Alec Dankworth on bass and Roy Dodds at the drums.

Her live concerts draw on all kinds of influences including jazz, soul, folk and blues. The new album balances six self-penned originals with six covers of songs by artists such as Sting, James Taylor and Bob Mintzer.

It follows two previous award-winning albums, As The Sun Shines Down on Me and Detour Ahead, which received critical acclaim and saw her reputation as a performer grow both in the UK and overseas.

t Further listening:


Norwich Arts Centre, June 15

As the old adage goes, if you want something done, ask someone busy. And if you want to hear some of the freshest, savviest, sweetest and most original song writing around, look no further than three of the busiest musicians in Scotland, newly in cahoots as a trio: Kris Drever, John McCusker and Roddy Woomble.

With their respectively distinguished pedigrees ranging freely across the folk and rock spectrum - and overlapping via several previous projects - each brings a wealth of diverse experience to the table, in a collaboration impelled primarily by that most magical of musical catalysts: pure enthusiasm.

Kris Drever (pictured) is an award-winning, highly acclaimed solo artist and member of the explosive, anarchic and award winning-folk trio LAU. A stunning guitarist and singer, he shares vocal duties with Roddy in this trio.

John McCusker needs no introduction - the successful artist/producer and arranger has appeared on records by the likes of Kate Rusby, Eddi Reader and many more, having released his own albums to both critical and commercial success.

Lead singer Roddy Woomble is already known to many hundreds of thousands as the vocalist in Idlewild, and has sold more than half a million albums. His hugely acclaimed folk solo debut, My Secret Is My Silence, continues to find new fans two years after its release.

t Further listening:


Norwich Arts Centre, June 17

Formed from the ashes of previous bands in and around Southend, Baddies are four friends on a mission to make people sit up and listen. They were tipped as ones to watch in 2009 by the NME, Q and Clash magazine, amongst others.

Theirs is a sound that flits effortlessly through Talking Heads / QOTSA and classic 70s UK punk.

Battleships with Block It Out as its B-side, saw them bring something fresh to the indie scene, a band that want people to dance, a band that want perform and make you sweat.

Having only been around for the last few months the band have already made a huge impression on those who have seen the awesome live show and heard the tracks that have been recorded so far. From two Myspace demos, the band were inundated with international gig requests, UK radio sessions and have had most major labels coming out of the woodwork to see what the fuss is about.

Baddies are keeping things under the radar for now and it is no secret that people are holding them close to their chests and reluctant to share the guys out, but this single should see all that change.

The band will be airing new material that they are currently working on for their forthcoming album.

t Further listening:


Norwich Arts Centre, June 18

WiQwar presents another night of ethereal soundscapes, haunting lyrics and stomping instrumentals from around the region headed by Cambridge's Fuzzy Lights (pictured), who combine both folk purity and psychedelic noise with echoes of more traditional blues/Americana via the wide-open spaces of East Anglia.

Their debut album, A Distant Voice, is an album to get truly lost in and has received glowing praise for its huge, cinematic sounds and moody rock with violin that's part hushed classicism and part crumbling intensity.

Suffolk's Three Beards meanwhile create a huge Eastern-European folk sound that can't fail to get an audience moving in body as well as mind. Classic instrumentation meets art-school minds to create some truly liberated moments, including re-workings of retro video game and electronic music, amongst more traditional folk numbers.

The bill is completed by Norwich's own My Dark Aunt and Spidermilk. My Dark Aunt are a haunting five-piece of cello, violin, accordion, glockenspiel, flute and voice.

Spidermilk combine their love of folk and post-rock experimentalism, creating music that lilts and soars with guitar, banjo, violin, accordion, drums and voice.

t Further listening:


June 12

Pulled Apart By Horses (punk/indie) - Arts Centre

Maycomb (pop-punk) - B2

Circus (rock) - King Edward VII

James Goodwin & Dave Thomas (blues) - Cider Shed

Cleaving Heavages (risqué rock) - Brickmakers

Slackbanta Sound System (hardcore/techno) - Queen Charlotte

Ska-Ta-Brain (ska) - Blueberry

Blue Rock (rock/indie) - Regal

Daffy & The Alien (rock) - Reindeer

June 13

Mostly Autumn (folk/rock) - Arts Centre

Emma Hall (soul/pop) - Brickmakers

Blind Spirit (rock) - King Edward VII

The Planks (soul) - Blueberry

World's Apart (rock) - Boundary

The Punktures (punk/ska) - Heartsease pub

Linda James (pop/country/soul) - Silver Road Cottage

Rockin' Johnnies (50s/60s) - Gatehouse

The Carpet Monsters (indie/pop) - Marlborough)

June 14

The Floozies (folk) - Cider Shed

Leopard Trio (rock'n'roll) - King Edward VII

Stonewood (rock) - Boundary

Outta Blues (4pm) - Reindeer

Lee Vasey Big Band (12pm) - Brickmakers

June 15

Jugsout (punk) - Marquee

Rampant Horse Collective (folk/roots) - Rumsey Wells

Jazz N Jam (jazz) - Blueberry

June 16

The Chill (rock/metal) - Brickmakers

Tomato Leaf (rock/punk) - B2

June 17

Serpico (pop-punk) - B2

The Lick (ska/funk) - Havana

Pure Acoustic (acoustic) - Brickmakers

The Session (Irish) - Cider Shed

June 18

The Lucky Last (indie) - Brickmakers

Girl In A Thunderbolt (alternative) - Rumsey Wells

Nevacain (grunge/indie) - B2

Andy Robinson (acoustic/folk) - Walnut Tree Shades

Against The Grain (rock/blues) - Blueberry

The Late Stan Guevara & His Laughing Castroleers (jazz/blues) - Rose Tavern

Davie J (50s-present) - Silver Road Cottage

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