Wallingford Blues and Jazz logo

Wallingford Winter Blues and Jazz Weekender 2024


Doors open at least 30mins before all shows or normal opening times for pubs/restaurants

Show/Hide All↓

Friday 16 February

5.00pm Launch Event - The Night Herons more info↓ St Mary's Church
FREE - must reserve
The Night Herons The Weekender gets under way with a special launch night in the grand surroundings of Wallingford Town hall. To start as we mean to go on The Night Herons will provide us with their entirely original, inventive and lyrical stylings with few Herons harmed in the process. Formed in 2013 by vocalist Rachel Holmes and songwriter/pianist Dave Hemming, they are joined by Chris Baines on drums and hugely respected local legend Mr. Nick Hill on bass. They have experimented with jazz, folk, trip-hop, pop, funk and gospel. Expect an eclectic mix of original songs!

There will also be a welcome from the mayor and Weekender founder, Councillor Mike Acreman.
7.30pm Jazz and Blues Divas - Fleur Stevenson, Rebecca Poole & Vimala Rowe more info↓ Corn Exchange
£20 - buy tickets
Ella This promises to be an unforgettable, one-off evening bringing together 3 of the UK’s leading jazz singers honouring the legacy of Nina Simone, Ella Fitzgerald, Peggy Lee and other great women singers in Jazz. *Diva means legendary not difficult in this context.

From Ronnie Scott’s to Sadlers Wells Vimala Rowe is a truly unclassifiable and and astonishing talent. Her training in Hindustani classical music in India to World music, Soul and effortlessly swinging Jazz has helped make award winning singer Vimala Rowe a much admired talent on the British Jazz scene. Rebecca Poole’s new album has recently been record of the week on Jazz FM and you may have spotted her at the Royal Albert hall with Jools Holland, or Cheltenham Jazz with Jamie Cullum or even spotted her in The Crown! Fleur Stevenson may be our local star and founder of Crowmarsh Jazz, but she’s also played with UK Jazz greats in the top London venues and gained a reputation as a gifted musician who’s rich, honeyed voice is always true, always passionate and never fails to move an audience.
8.30pm Hendrix & Hip Hop - Denny Ilett plays Jimi Hendix followed by Conrad more info↓ Wallingford Masonic Centre
£10 - buy tickets
Hendrix Few guitarist in the UK today would take on playing Jimi Hendrix but Denny llett’s recently sold out run at Ronnie Scott’s showed that he’s more than up to the task. The hugely popular guitarist is here playing with a stripped back trio (meaning basic not naked) just like Jimi in his days with Mitch Mitchell and Noel Redding, this gig will recreate one of the greatest and most earth shattering blues trios of all time.

Following Denny will be a Conrad who is rapidly making a name for himself on the British hip hop scene. With shades of Loyle Carner Conrad very much has his own sound with some powerful things to say. He also hails from Wallingford so may one day become our most famous son!

Saturday 17 February

10.30am Funky Friday (on a Saturday!) with Maff Potts more info↓ Family Centre
FREE - must reserve
Funk Friday Funky Friday has been going for 12 years at St John’s primary school in Wallingford as an after school club where kids learn about the legends of Funk, Soul, Jazz, Blues and Disco while dancing, singing and demolishing school equipment. All ages can come and just let their hair down, go a bit wild and learn about the history of Jazz, Funk and Soul and why it’s better to live life on the offbeat! While you’re at it come and find the amazing Family Centre that deserves more people to know about it, on Wigod way.
12.30pm Live Jazz in the Town Square - Mix of Surprise artists more info↓ Town Square
Free - just turn up
Jazz Music logo with Instruments We wanted the whole town to resound to the sounds of the Blues & Jazz weekender so a group of local musicians will be playing under the town hall - we’re expecting saxophones, vocals, guitars, piano trio and who knows what…come and find out and watch us stop the traffic and entertain the bus queues!
2.00pm Stuart Henderson & Jez Cook more info↓ The Comrades Club
FREE - must reserve
Stuart Henderson This is the hidden gem of a gig at the Winter Blues & Jazz weekend where you get to see two incredible musicians in the intimate setting of a vintage train carriage!
One jazz club owner said recently "Stuart sounds like all the greats but at the same time is uniquely brilliant" .As principal trumpeter of the Scots Guards for 22 years there aren't many big international stages Stuart Henderson hasn't played. Now leader of the Remix Jazz orchestra he is still playing the big stages at festivals across the UK. Jez Cook is a highly accomplished guitarist much admired by regular collaborators such as John Etheridge and Gary Potter (two virtuosos too) and in the past has played with George Harrison, Jools Holland and other household names. There are few styles Jez hasn't mastered and we're so lucky he lives in Oxfordshire!
3.00pm Film Screening - Soul (PG) Pixar Music Animation more info↓ Town Hall
FREE - must reserve
Soul movie Local film projectorist-at-large Jon Jones is showing “Soul” by Pixar for all ages to enjoy. The story of an aspiring Jazz pianist who goes on quite the metaphysical journey - and that’s just the jazz - will have everyone smiling, dancing and thinking about the meaning of existence. Pixar films do that.
5.00pm Four + One more info↓ 5 Little Pigs
Free - just turn up
Nick Hill A Jazz quartet led by highly respected local legend Nick Hill. Mr Hill has taught just about every kid in Wallingford music as head of music at Wallingford school for decades and is a supremely talented piano player and bassist. Here he is joined by other wonderful local musicians and Crowmarsh Jazz’s very own Steve Foster on vocals. Steve’s voice evokes Chet Baker if Chet lived in Cholsey. As well as his mellow, smooth delivery he also plays a mean Blues harmonica which might make an appearance.
7.30pm A Night of Frank & Louis with Enrico Tomasso & Denny Ilett more info↓ Corn Exchange
£20 - buy tickets
Frank and Louis Denny Illet has had a lifelong love affair with the music of Frank Sinatra and his voice evokes both the rich tone and the effortless, cool swing. If Frank was jazz’s biggest star for many years the Daddy of the whole art form must surely be Louis Armstrong - the greatest of them all (Frank worshipped him too!). Enrico Tommaso has been famous on the British jazz scene for his beautiful recreations of Louis tunes but he also has an astounding personal connection with Louis - come to the gig and find out what that is!
8.30pm Hugh Turner Heavy Funk more info↓ The Dolphin
Free - just turn up
Hugh Turner Put your mellow smooth jazz taste buds in a locked box for a while, cos this is full throated, jazz funk that will reach down inside you and demand your limbs to girate. With the phenomenal guitar virtuoso Hugh Turner leading a power trio (bass & drums) in some classic tunes and his own great compositions there will be nowhere to hide.
10.30pm Late Night Jazz & Blues Jam more info↓ The Dolphin
Free - just turn up
Jazz Jam Sax logi Who knows what will happen! This after hours party is open to everyone and musicians from across the weekend will come together to spontaneously combust in front of your very eyes! It promises to be wild and wonderful.

Sunday 18 February

11.00am Fleur Stevenson & Maff Potts more info↓ Waterside Care Home
Care home - residents only
Fleur and Maff We want everyone to be included in the weekender especially those who can’t make it into town. So Crowmarsh jazz founders, Fleur & Maff are playing a duo set from the Great American Songbook at Waterside Care Home. Thanks to the staff there for supporting the weekender in this way.
2.30pm Oxford Gospel Choir more info↓ St Mary's Church
Free - just turn up
Oxford Gospel Choir Finalists in the choir of the year (!!!) Oxford Gospel Choir, now in its 18th year, is a community choir where everyone is welcome to join in singing a repertoire of uplifting, inspirational and life-affirming Gospel and popular music.
5.00pm Sounds of Blue Note - Pangbourne Jazz Club featuring Ben Cummings more info↓ OPO
Free - just turn up
Pangbourne Jazz Club Blue Note records are the most famous and hippest label in Jazz. Ben and the boys from Pangbourne Jazz club will play cool school and hard bop classics by greats such as Lee Morgan, Adderley, Miles Davis and more.

Pangbourne Jazz club (Jazz @PJC|) is a monthly Jazz Club, founded by Keith Howard and Terry Hutchins bringing the Best of the British Jazz scene on the first Sunday of each month between February and December. The club has a great atmosphere, great audience and great guests.

Ben Cummings is one of the UK’s most exciting trumpet players having played internationally with the likes of Jamie Cullum, Snowboy and the Latin section and Caro Emerald.
7.30pm Brothers from Another Mother more info↓ Town Arms
Free - just turn up
Spasm No better way to end the weekend than with a hard rollin’ feel good blues band. Two pairs of brothers who who’ve been playing together for decades - previously with the infamous “Honkin’ Hepcats”(!) - will bring their brand of mischievous blues with songs by Rufus Thomas, Junior Wells, T-Bone Walker and more.

Denny Illet on Guitar Fleur Stevenson on the mic Oxford Gospel Choir performing Vimala Rowe on the mic

Bunkfest Train Logo
Sponsored by Bunkfest

Crowmarsh Jazz Logo Corn Exchange Logo

Wallingford Town Council Logo