Multi-instrumentalist Mike, trained classically at Oxford and the Royal College of Music, before discovering rock and roll. To avoid a chaotic lifetime of debauchery, he transferred his allegiances to jazz, thus leaping from the frying pan into the fire!
Mike believes fervently in making the structures and language of jazz more accessible to the layperson, and in harnessing the infectious power of melody and improvisation to the fun and challenge of helping listeners to understand and appreciate what jazz musicians are trying to do.
Sax, flute, clarinet
The quintessential musicians’ drummer. Milo graduated in Manchester, and played there for a while, before taking the chance to move to London, where he played with a host of big name jazz stars. His craft as a total percussionist finds expression in polyrhythmic patterns, for example in the music of ‘Tango Nuevo’.
Drummers sit behind an array of percussion which so often forms a barrier between the player and his musical colleagues beyond. Milo has the rare gift
of being able to ‘hear’ beyond the drums, and thus to set up fascinating interplays with the rest of the band.
There’s not much in the world of music and performance at which Lucy has not excelled, since her early training in opera, and then a degree in Performance Arts. She’s an accomplished guitarist, pianist and flautist, but well known in recent years as a jazz singer. She has her own group, ‘Court and Spark’, dedicated to the music of Joni Mitchell.
Lucy’s total musicianship and warm personality is just what ‘The Seven’ needs from its vocalist, so that she can both feature with the band and, just as importantly, to sing within it.
As a child, Mickey was first drawn to the trombone, but a tape measure decreed that his arms were too short, so the musical world lost a trombonist but gained a very talented trumpet player! A graduate of Goldsmiths and the Guildhall School of Music, Mickey played classically for a while, before winning a post in Jool Holland’s Band.
Mickey is a total musician, with a deep love of music in all its forms. Many trumpet players tend to dominate: that’s not Mickey’s way, preferring to use his great technique on the instrument to create an ensemble with his other musical colleagues.
Al moved south, from Stockport, via an extended period in London, and has gained his particular recognition in jazz trio work, in clubs and venues up and down the land. His compendium of musical knowledge is vast, from the intimate work of his keyboard hero, Bill Evans, to larger scale musical endeavours.
Al is a musician very much respected by his peers, as a thoughtful and expressive player. We’re lucky to have him on board!
Equally at home on classical guitar as jazz and Latin American playing, Paul contradicts the commonly held image of the guitarist flinging himself about the stage, preferring instead to quietly ally his fertile musical imagination with his technical skills. It’s for good reason that he’s much in demand as a teacher.
Singers and horn players relish Paul’s sensitivity as an accompanist, as he brings a sense of warmth and security to any ensemble. But wait for an opportunity to improvise a chorus or two, and he will blow you away!
Any band lucky enough to count Oz among its personnel will not only keep perfect time and live in the security of knowing where the bass line is going, but will also be assured of an evening of fun as Oz’s youthful and infectious personality warms the occasion.
Under his command, the double bass is far from cumbersome, and certainly doesn’t limit Oz’s powers of musical invention. His contribution to ‘The Seven’ cannot be overestimated.
- and the Jazz Adventure.
Mike Wilson formed the Band in 2018 partly for the selfish reason of wanting an ensemble to perform and enjoy a particular type of repertoire, and partly with the clear intent of aiming to actively share music in the jazz idiom with audiences and listeners who are far too often ignored by the jazz world.
Brighton and the South Coast is well known for jazz of the highest quality, and is home to many top musicians. This band contains the cream of the crop! Individually, the musicians – all fully professional – have demanding musical careers both locally and further afield.
‘The Seven’ play in a melodic and accessible style, which has at its heart the aim of pleasing the ear. Every performance is introduced by Mike in a thoroughly inclusive and humorous way, so that the audience has every best opportunity of joining with us in our ‘Jazz adventure’.