Internationally acclaimed vocalist and BBC Radio 3 Jazz Line-Up presenter Claire Martin will be making an appearance at Mold’s Clwyd Theatr Cyrmu on Tuesday (March 31) in a special keynote concert hosted by North Wales Jazz, and featuring the celebrated Dave Newton piano trio.
Claire Martin, who has spent the last 27 years honing her craft and establishing herself as a tour de force on the UK jazz scene, releasing numerous critically acclaimed albums and collaborating with some of the world’s best musicians, has also won at the British Jazz Awards seven times.
Growing up in a household with jazz-loving parents Claire became a professional singer at 19 and two years later she realised her dream of singing at Ronnie Scott’s legendary jazz club in Soho.
Signed to Linn Records in 1991 she has since released 17 CDs with the label, collaborating with musical luminaries Martin Taylor, John Martyn, Stephane Grappelli, Mark Nightingale, Jim Mullen, Nigel Hitchcock and renowned pianist and composer Sir Richard Rodney Bennett with whom she performed, until his death in 2012, in both the UK and the United States, where they played to sell-out crowds at venues including the prestigious Algonquin Hotel in New York City.
Their CD together, Witchcraft, gained much critical acclaim and was ‘unequivocally recommended’ by Jazzwise magazine.
Claire has performed all over Europe and Asia with her world-class trio, touring Scandinavia, Russia and China, and is also a featured soloist with celebrated orchestras and big bands such as the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic Orchestra, the BBC Big Band, the BBC Concert Orchestra and Ireland’s RTÉ Concert Orchestra, while in 2011 she made her debut at the Lincoln Center in New York.
In the same year Claire recorded with legendary US jazz pianist Kenny Barron and an all-star American line-up for her 15th album for Linn records. Too Much in Love to Care received five star reviews and prompted Jazz Journal to state that she is ‘one of the finest jazz singers in the world today’.
The album went on to win the Best New Recording award at the 2012 British Jazz Awards, and 2013 was spent touring the new material in the UK and Europe and embarking on a new show, The Two of Us, with conductor John Wilson, Joe Stilgoe, Mark McGann and the Royal Liverpool Philharmonic, celebrating the music of Paul McCartney and John Lennon.
A co-presenter of BBC Radio 3’s Jazz Line Up since 2000, Claire Martin has interviewed many of her musical heroes such as Pat Metheny, the late Michael Brecker, Brad Mehldau and Andre Previn, and in 2011 she was delighted to be awarded an OBE for her services to jazz at the Queen’s Birthday Honours in June.
More recently she has performed with The Montpellier Cello Quartet, a collaboration which featured arrangements written especially for her by Sir Richard Rodney Bennett, Mark Anthony Turnage and Django Bates, and resulted in her 2014 album for Linn Records, Time and Place.
Joining Claire Martin for the concert of Great American Songbook classics, which includes gems from Cole Porter, Irving Berlin and George Gershwin, will be the piano-led Dave Newton Trio, featuring Arnie Somogyi (double bass) and Steve Brown (drums).
Dave, voted Best Jazz Pianist in the British Jazz Awards 13 times and a highly respected and much in demand musician, has worked with jazz greats such as Martin Taylor, Annie Ross and Carol Kidd.
The concert starts at 8pm and admission is £15, concessions £13 and schoolchildren £5. Tickets can be purchased at Clwyd Theatr Cymru on 01352 755114 or at clwyd-theatr-cymru.co.uk, while more information is available from North Wales Jazz on 01745 812260 and at northwalesjazz.org.uk.