This year's Jazz FM Awards are now set to take place at Shoreditch Town Hall, London on Tuesday 25 April (moving from Under the Bridge in Chelsea) and are set to honour jazz-loving Rolling Stones drummer Charlie Watts. Aside from rocking stadiums with the Stones, Watts has a longstanding parallel career playing jazz, blues and boogie-woogie. His most recent album: Charlie Watts meets the Danish Radio Big Band, has just been released on legendary jazz label, Impulse! The Gold Award is set to recognise his lifelong commitment to the music, while he's also nominated in the Blues Artist of the Year and Album of The Year categories for The Rolling Stones' recent blues-soaked long-player, Blue and Lonesome.
Commenting on the special award, Watts said: "I am very grateful to be honoured by Jazz FM for my contribution to jazz and blues. I've always loved and been influenced by the music and its players. It was one of the reasons I wanted to be a musician myself. It's still important that we continue to support this music, to ensure it lives on for the next generations."
The awards night coincides with what would have been Ella Fitzgerald's 100th birthday, 25 April, with the ceremony hosted by one of Jazz FM's original presenters, Jez Nelson, who returned to the station last year. Performances on the night will feature several of the nominees, including acclaimed former David Bowie saxophonist Donny McCaslin, soul-jazz singer Laura Mvula and a special appearance by this year's recipient of the Lifetime Achievement Award, Brit-jazz vocalist Georgie Fame, who will be backed by a band featuring Guy Barker, Alec Dankworth, Jim Watson and James Powell.
Other nominees this year include Gregory Porter, William Bell, Wayne Shorter, Madeleine Peyroux, Gilles Peterson, Anderson.Paak, Kurt Elling, Robert Glasper, Shabaka Hutchings, Yussef Kaamal, Soweto Kinch and Julian Argüelles, while La La Land and Whiplash director Damien Chazelle will be the recipient of this year's Impact Award.
– Mike Flynn
For the full list of nominees visit www.jazzfmawards.com