Brittany Calling! Update on “Fest Jazz” and Jazz at School in France

Andrea Motis with her mentor Joan Chamorro

Early this year Jazz&Jazz featured, courtesy of Trevor Stent (Leader of Brittany’s Good Time Jazz Band) “Jazz at School… A Homage to Catalonia” and “Fest Jazz” at Chateauneuf du Faou, Brittany.

Trevor has now updated Jazz&Jazz on the incredible progress being made with Jazz in School in Brittany and yet again we ask the question: “Why Not in the UK?”.

The song I Wish I Knew How It Would Feel To Be Free is an important feature in the educational project, recounting the history of jazz and the struggle for human rights in the USA. It is also one of the most popular numbers at the school concerts organised by Trevor and Good Time Jazz.

“Fest Jazz” was also a huge success and 18 year old Andrea Motis gave a star performance.

Earlier Posts:

Encouraging signs for  Jazz in Europe, So Why Not in the UK 

Voila! Jazz à l’Ecole! Time to Take up the Cudgel Again in the UK?

Not just any old festival, this is an Inspirational Jazz Fest!

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  1. Peter Butler says:

    Continuing from my last email to you regarding younger people getting all enthusiastic about traditional jazz. I had the great pleasure of playing at Matt & Phred’s Jazz Club in Manchester last Saturday night with Speakeasy Bootleg Band. I am left wondering after this and other gigs we have done recently if there is a resurgence in interest in more traditional forms of jazz from the youth of today. The club was packed, literally standing room only, with a mix of age groups from 20’s to 70’s. The atmosphere was fabulous and the proprietors looked after the musicians very well indeed. After the first few tunes every available floor space was packed with (mostly) young people dancing and it continued this way until the last number. At the end of the night there was a succession of young punters coming to the stage to shake hands with the band members. I’ve never experienced anything close to this at a jazz gig before.

    Whether we play what is commonly referred to as traditional jazz is up for debate as we opened one of our sets with “At The Jazz Band Ball” and another with Clifford Brown’s “Blues Walk”. Other tunes on the list were traddy war horses such as “Jazz Me Blues, The Sheik of Araby & King of the Swingers”, standards such as ” As Long As I Live, Tangerine & It Might as Well be Spring” and anything from the riffing “Lester Leaps In” to the delightfully comedic “Never Swat A Fly”. What is perhaps more important is not the choice of tunes and the preconceived brackets they fall into but the manner and style in which they were played. The band fed off the audience and played with great energy, took a few risks (some of which worked and some that didn’t!) but most of all entertained the audience not just ourselves, which after all is what we were there to do.

    Please do not think that I am saying this band and these musicians are “The Best in the Land”, clearly we are not. However, last night for a few all too brief hours we were part of something very special and highly enjoyable for band and audience alike. What I would say to other musicians/bands is get out there and dare to be a little different, go and play at different venues, choose your sets wisely and see what results you can achieve in attracting new people to “our” music. Don’t rely on playing at the same old places in front of the same old faces, plodding through the same old tunes. After all without doing things differently and attracting new blood this music will die.

    The last few months of playing in Liverpool and Manchester have given me great pleasure but more importantly hope, that by the time I get any good at playing jazz there will

    1. Still be other musicians happy to play jazz,
    2. Still be venues happy to put on jazz bands and
    3. Most importantly still be an audience to play to. –

    Paul Marks

  2. shelina says:

    Hi I’ was wondering would you be interested in performing at my best friends wedding in Brittany, France if so can I please have your contact details and how I can reach you. many thanks, Shelina

  3. Peter Butler says:


    Jazz&Jazz does not represent FestJazz. You would need to contact Trevor Stent direct.

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