Wednesday 28th October 2020
£28.50 - £37.50
Line-up: BYRON WALLEN trumpet/flugelhorn; ROB LUFT guitar; PAUL MICHAEL bass; ROD YOUNGS drums
The PORTRAIT album released this year, features Byron’s band Four Corners. Originally from Tottenham, Byron Wallen has lived in Woolwich, South East London, for nearly 20 years. He was commissioned by PRS For Music Foundation to compose a suite of music celebrating his chosen home town, a suite which became known as ‘Anthem for Woolwich’. Reflecting on Woolwich’s vibrancy, multiculturism and lively community spirit, the suite is a portrait of a once paramount part of London in a time of transformational promise.
Byron’s work draws inspiration from contemporary and indigenous cultures. His passionate musical knowledge and his fascination with the human spirit is evident in this new music which is breath-taking in its excitement and depth.
Byron Wallen is ‘one of the most innovative, exciting and original trumpet players alive’ - Jazzwise Magazine.
Byron Wallen (b. 1969) was raised in a musical family and as a child studied classical piano, euphonium, trumpet, flute and drums. The trumpet becoming his first-choice instrument, he studied with Peter Ruderforth in London and with Jimmy Owens, Donald Byrd and Jon Faddis in New York in the mid to late 80s. In 1992, Wallen graduated from Sussex University with a degree in psychology, philosophy and mathematics.
He has been playing, live and on record, alongside legendary musicians such as George Benson, Andrew Hill, Chaka Khan, Hugh Masekela, Courtney Pine, Mulatu Astatke, Red Snapper, Jack Dejohnette, Cleveland Watkiss and King Sunny Ade. In 1992, Wallen formed Sound Advice touring the UK and playing in Syria in 1996 and the Czech Republic in 1997. The band also appeared at the North Sea Jazz Festival, gaining critical and audience acclaim.
Wallen is an acclaimed writer and producer whose original scores have been commissioned by the Science Museum; PRS, the BBC, Jerwood Foundation, Southbank Centre, National Theatre, Arts Council, FIFA and Sage Gateshead. He has also created soundscapes for Universal Pictures, Warner Bros and Game of Thrones. His compositions include Live, with Sheron Wray's dance company, Langston Hughes Suite, The Trumpet Kings, and Tarot Suite, an extended work of 22 movements, written for a 10-piece band. In 2003, Wallen won the BBC's Innovation in Jazz award for his third album Indigo. For Byron’s fourth album, Meeting Ground (2007), featuring Gnawa master musician Boujemma Boubul, he received nominations for Best Band and Best Album in the 2007 BBC Jazz Awards and Best Jazz Act in the 2007 MOBO Awards. In 2017, Wallen received the coveted Paul Hamlyn Award for Artists. His band Byron Wallen’s Four Corners released their album PORTRAIT: Reflections on Belonging earlier this year to critical acclaim and was nominated for Jazz Ensemble of the Year for the Parliamentary Jazz Awards 2020.
Tell us what you think of BYRON WALLEN’S FOUR CORNERS – 'PORTRAIT' below..