Tord Gustavsen - In A Silent Way

A remarkably understated Norwegian piano trio has produced a set of albums that have become some of the best selling jazz records in Europe in the last few years. Led by pianist Tord Gustavsen the trio is set for a UK tour and an appearance at the London Jazz Festival in November following the release of Being There earlier this year. Stuart Nicholson digs deep to discover their influences, their affinity to “cool school” jazz, and how their Norwegian roots informs thieir music.

Cleo Laine and John Dankworth - Double Top

Dame Cleo Laine and Sir John Dankworth both turned 80 recently, a milestone for the couple who for many years have personified British jazz internationally, receiving acclaim and honours frequently along the way. Still active on the scene they look back on a remarkable career with Stuart Nicholson, to the days when bebop was a new music heard at first hand by Dankworth in New York and to the days when he shared a stage with Charlie Parker and toured with Duke Ellington.

Robert Wyatt - Human Nature

Robert Wyatt has a unique perspective on jazz. As a lover of the music and a frequent collaborator with some of today’s most interesting performers, Wyatt also represents a quintessentially English tradition of radical dissent both in his songs and in his politics. Formerly a rock drummer with Soft Machine, a band which has remained uniquely influential on subsequent generations of jazz and rock fans alike, he now pursues a distinctive second life as a singer and songwriter, rarely performing but steadily creating a string of critically acclaimed albums. The latest, Comicopera, has just been released. Duncan Heining travels to Robert’s home in Lincolnshire for this special interview and also talks to musicians from Robert’s new album, Annie Whitehead and Gilad Atzmon.

Liane Carroll - In Praise Of Slow

Recorded in just four hours, Liane Carroll’s new album, ironically titled Slow Down, underlines just what the singer/pianist has achieved over a career that saw her begin singing as a teenager. Something of a “best kept secret” for much of her career it’s only in the last few years, as Peter Quinn explains, that Liane has got the recognition that she deserves.

Dave Stapleton - Place Your Bets

Pianist Dave Stapleton is a driving force on the new Welsh scene, encouraging local activities not only by his own efforts as a pianist and band leader but also by acting as a record label boss, putting out his own music and recordings by musicians of the order of Keith Tippett. On the eve of the release of his latest quintet The House Always Wins Dave talks to Stuart Nicholson.

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