A new jazz scene is flourishing in London with packed club nights full of young audiences coming to see London’s new young jazz talent, reports Sean Fletcher for BBC Inside Out London tonight, Monday 28 January.
Helping to develop the new talent fuelling the scene is a charity called Tomorrow’s Warriors, who provide free musical instruments and free teaching to help young Londoners, often from deprived backgrounds, develop their jazz skills and go on to be world-class musicians.
Tomorrow’s Warrior student Cassius tells BBC Inside Out London: “I don’t have a drum kit, I haven’t had a drum kit but I’ve played drums for about six years now. For me how I learn how to play drums and how I still learn is I have a kit which in my head that I can envision. I just put different parts where they are and then get different fragments or phrases or rhythms and just play it out, air drum. Hopefully if it all does work out I do see myself going to be a jazz drummer, hopefully leading my own band like Elvin Jones did or Art Blakey did.”
Janine Irons MBE, Chief Executive of Tomorrows Warriors tells Inside Out tonight: “We’re absolutely against charging young people to be on this programme because immediately that sets up a barrier for anybody from an under privileged background. We’ve got people working several jobs, we’ve got parents working several jobs and still not able to make ends meet. “ Even though classes at Tomorrow’s Warrior are free, some of the best jazz musicians who tour all round the world are teachers.
Binker Golding, a MOBO award-winning saxophonist learnt at Tomorrow’s Warrior himself, and comes back to teach, as does Nubya Garcia, who is now one of the leading lights of this exciting new jazz scene.
Janine Irons tells Inside Out: “There is a payback really, you have access to a free programme for a very substantial period of time. There is an understanding that we will support you to be the musician you want to be, but in turn we expect you to take on the responsibility to your community of musicians, and be prepared if required to teach the next generation.”
WATCH Inside Out London on BBC One, 7:30pm, Monday 28 January and on BBC iPlayer.