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Last year alto saxophonist Jake Baxendale and guitarist Callum Allardice were commissioned by the NZ Festival to write and arrange 4 works for a collaboration with Korean traditional/jazz fusion group Black String. The program debuted at the 2017 Wellington Jazz Festival and resulted in a 7-date tour of South Korea.
This came straight off the back of a tour of New Zealand in partnership with Chamber Music New Zealand, during which they performed at Pequeno Lounge in Dunedin.
"That was a great gig," remarks Baxendale. "We'd been playing a lot of churches and reverberant halls, all very rich and resonant, but it was a pleasure to do a more informal set in a relaxed atmosphere, close up and personal, like jazz should be! We're really excited to be coming back."
The Jac are a truly international group, with pianist Daniel Millward residing in Melbourne, while trumpeter Lex French is pursuing a Doctorate in Montreal. It's not easy to get the band together, but Baxendale assures that it's worth the effort: "this particular mix of musicians just gels, both on the band stand and off it."
The program will be a mix of music from their second album "The Green Hour", works from the Black String collaboration, and brand new material. "We're really excited about sharing the Korean influenced stuff with NZ audiences," says Baxendale "and we're just as excited to try out the new tunes as well."
The Jac will perform at Pequeno Lounge Wednesday, October 17th, 7-9pm.