Horace Silver classic albums.jpg

Horace Silver Project

Friday 17 Mar 2023

Clare Hirst - tenor, Freddie Gavita – trumpet, Andrea Vicari – piano, Marianne Windham – bass, Matt Fishwick – drums.

This celebration of Horace Silver’s major contribution to jazz through his compositions and playing got off to a rousing start with one of his most famous numbers – Sister Sadie, which featured a particularly spritely and sparkling solo from Andrea.

This group of very talented musicians had clearly played this music together on many previous occasions and it was evident from the confident, tight-knit introductions and endings to numbers and the easy segues between solos.

Sister Sadie was followed by Pretty Eyes, a gentler tune that gave Freddie ample opportunity to demonstrate his purity of tone on flugelhorn. Nica’s Dream had a strong latin rhythm and included another exciting solo from Andrea with strong support from Marianne before Freddie gave us a bravura trumpet solo. The Jodi Grind was funky and gospellish; Clare made the most of this with a brilliant attacking solo before an equally impressive one from Marianne.

In The Preacher, another of Silver’s best known compositions, Andrea and Marianne combined again, swinging hard; Clare was emphatically upbeat in her solo and Matt showed that simple, precise support can be very effective. The Cape Verdean Blues completed the first half of the evening with excellent longer solos from Clare and Freddie and a superb, complex but carefully structured solo from Matt which drew prolonged applause. We were treated to similar demonstrations of this structured approach in the second half of the evening.

We resumed with Hardbop Grandpop, with mellow, melodic solos from both Clare and Freddie, strongly supported by Marianne. In Song For My Father Freddie’s pure-toned solo led into an extremely exciting one from Andrea, injecting real Brazilian heat into this bossa nova tune. Ecaroh (Horace backwards) was followed by the lovely ballad Peace given thoughtful interpretation by everyone, as it richly deserves.

The very fast Nutville allowed everyone to demonstrate their superb musicianship with a splendid solo from Freddie and another very structured solo from Matt – dramatic rather than complex this time – deserving special mention.. Two more numbers completed the evening, the second – Juicy Lucy – being demanded by an audience who gave the band a rapturous reception and went home happily knowing a little more about Horace Silver’s legendary compositional abilities.

Photos from the event

Click on a photo to enlarge it