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Graeme Wilson Quartet + Grandma  -  Sun Feb 14, 2016  |  08:00 pm
When Graeme Wilson left Tyneside to return to his native Scotland, we feared that we wouldn’t be seeing him very often. In fact he’s managed to get back across the Border reasonably frequently, but we still like to seize every opportunity of hearing his magnificent saxophone playing, and with this double bill we’re presenting him in two contrasting contexts.

Graeme had been impressing us in other people’s bands for something like seven years before emerging as leader of this quartet in late 2012. The quality of the line-up, with the rhythm section of Paul Edis, Andy Champion and Adam Sinclair, promised riches before they’d played a single note, and we weren’t disappointed. Everybody’s abiiities were given full rein by Graeme’s wonderful compositions, some previously aired in other groups, some surfacing for the first time. And naturally Graeme himself was at his magisterial best in this situation, his devotion to Coltrane always evident, but re-cast in ceaselessly original and imaginative ways. Since that debut the quartet has gone from strength to strength, and in 2015 was chosen as one of the North’s top dozen bands for inclusion in Jazz North’s ‘Northern Line’ scheme.

Grandma, the duo with guitarist Mark Williams, is of even more recent vintage, playing one set at a Splinter gig in October 2013, and following this up with a session at the 2014 Gateshead International Jazz Festival. Graeme described it as an opportunity to “use up” tunes they both had “hanging around”, but whatever the pedigree of the material, it allowed each of them to express themselves in subtly different ways.

This concert is financially assisted by the Jazz North 'Northern Line' scheme.

Tickets for this gig are available from Reflex Records (0191 260 3246) or online from