Presenters – Meet The Team

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Andrea Vicari

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Pianist and composer Andrea Vicari was born in Miami (Florida) and grew up in Birmingham (England). Educated at Cardiff University she won a scholarship to study at The Guildhall School of Music in London. Andrea was soon in demand as a ‘side-man” working with bass guitar legend, Dill Katz in a band that included the then unknown guitarist Phil Robson. Soon after she formed her first important group with Julian Argüelles on saxophone & Stuart Hall, then of Django Bates’ “Human Chain”, on bass. Other employers included GRP recording artist, Phil Bent; jazz warrior David-Jean Baptiste with whom she recorded her first commercially released CD; and the all-women band “Birds” led by Kathy Stobart. She played a successful season at London’s sadly defunct jazz club “The Bass Clef” with the late great American saxophone innovator, Eddie Harris, broadcasting live on JazzFM radio; and gigged with the US trumpet legend Art Farmer.

 

Chris Hodgkins

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Chris Hodgkins recently retired after 29 years as the Director of Jazz Services, the national support charity for jazz music and musicians. During his time at the organisation, he was honoured for his Services to Jazz at the 2002 BBC Jazz Awards and in July 2013 at the British Jazz Awards. Chris was awarded the Services to Jazz Award at the Parliamentary Jazz Awards in March 2015.  Despite his successes championing British jazz he still found the time to play himself, and as a musician released several great albums with his various groups, including 2009’s Boswell’s London Journal, which was reviewed as ‘CD of the Week’ in the Evening Standard. With his days of administration behind him, Chris now takes to the road, the radio and the recording studio to focus on playing the music he loves.

Hodgkins was raised in Cardiff. He co-founded the Welsh Jazz Festival and was instrumental in establishing the Welsh Jazz Society. As a professional trumpeter, Chris has toured the UK and Europe, appearing at the Sacramento Jazz Festival in the USA. The Chris Hodgkins Band made a name for itself supporting the likes of Buddy Tate, Humphrey Lyttelton, Kathy Stobart, Bud Freeman and Wild Bill Davison.

 

Deirdre Cartwright

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London based guitarist and composer who became well known presenting the BBC TV’s ground breaking series ‘Rockschool’. She also played with Afro Latin Jazz group The Guest Stars. They recorded three albums and toured in 17 countries. In 1991 she formed the Deirdre Cartwright Group. Has recorded five albums with her own group, and played festivals from Mexico to Warsaw. She has also written and recorded albums with the groups Emily Remembered, LUND and ARQ. She has played with Tal Farlow, toured with Jamaican composer Marjorie Whylie, founded Blow the Fuse with Alison Rayner, presented on Radio 3. Has written seven books on guitar playing and was head of guitar syllabus for the Rock School exam series.

“If there is a more complete guitarist in contemporary music than Deirdre Cartwright – I’d like to know who it is” Dave Gelly The Observer

“Cartwright’s coolly undulating Grant Green shuffle groove is one of the understated pleasure of UK’s contemporary fusion.” John Fordham

“Her sinewy guitar fronts a sparse trio – with beatnik spoken-word injections from Sarah P – who stretch out like a psychedelic 1960s blues band, but take the blind leaps of faith of improvisers. Highlights are the Nirvana grunge-fusion Smells Like Jazz and a sublime exploration of Kate Bush’s Wuthering Heights.” Stewart Lee Sunday Times

 

Emily Saunders

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London born and based Emily Saunders has established a strong career as vocalist, writer, producer.
Her music, broadcast nationally on BBC Radio 1, 2, 3, 4, 6, JazzFM & XFM, along with radio stations around the world (eg Australia, Japan, Mexico, Spain, Germany, South Africa, Sweden to name a few), has also charted internationally on iTunes and Amazon in the UK, USA, Spain, Germany, France and Indonesia; Emily has truly become an international force in the jazz world.

Through bandleading, virtuosic vocals, composing, arranging and producing both Cotton Skies and her second release Outsiders Insiders, she has become critically acclaimed as being assured, polished and accomplished.

 

Johnny Mooney

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I was born in Liverpool at the height of Beatlemania, though I was blissfully unaware of such a phenomena at the time. I have worked most of my professional life as a teacher; a job which has taken me halfway around the world, before depositing me in London, my home since the beginning of this century. Along the way, I have fallen in love with rock, punk and indie, industrial, techno, reggae, jungle and world music; pretty much in that order.

As well as playing music myself, I have  recently established the “No Wahala Sounds” record label with my friend and business partner, James; specialising in lost gems from Africa and the Indian sub-continent.

On my Jazz London Radio programme, World Showcase, I hope to play tracks that may by turns delight, intrigue and occasionally disconcert the listener.

Hope you enjoy the trip!

Julian Costello

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Julian was born in London where he still lives with his family. He tries to approach life with humour and is a saxophonist, teacher and composer.

On the Saxophone Show he will be playing music that features many different sax players from the past to the present and focusing on different players from the USA, and Europe. Each week he will feature a particular player and have an emphasis on music made in the UK.

 

Kevin Davy

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Kevin Davy was born in Nottingham in 1961. He moved to Manchester in 1986 to take up a place as a student, at Manchester Metropolitan University, attaining a Bachelors of Arts Degree in General Arts, after which he stayed in the city, becoming involved in the arts and music scene there. A background in Print, and Visual Arts, as well as literature, continue to inform his work.

Kevin has an extensive recorded discography, which includes work ranging from musical theatre, to modern jazz, and contemporary music. He has toured extensively, with groups such as: Lamb, Adam F, Lemn Sissay’s Secret Society, and Finley Quaye. In 1994 Kevin relocated to London to work as an actor-musician, at The Donmar Warehouse, on their production of, The Three Penny Opera, directed by Phyllida Lloyd. Collaborations with the writer SuAndi, and others have followed, with participation in community-driven projects. Formerly, Kevin had built strong affiliations with Manchester venues; Band On The Wall, and PJ Bells, where he had long residencies. More recently, Kevin has toured Germany with the acclaimed show; Afrika Afrika, conceived by Andre Heller, and choreographed by Georges Mamboye. Over the last two years, Kevin Davy, has revived his popular:

Kevin Davy’s Monster Jam at the Rich Mix venue, in Bethnal Green, London, and continues to direct his own music as well as work in collaboration with other musical projects.

 

Liv Fernandes

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Liv Fernandes was born in Cornwall, but at the age of two her parents moved to London where she grew up. Liv has gone from working in the health sector, to medical journalist and later press and information roles in the charity sector. It was during the latter that she began singing and training her voice for jazz. She studied Jazz Singing Level 1, 2 and 3 and learnt piano for four years at City Lit Adult Education College as well other institutions before finding her personal vocal coach in contemporary and bossa singer Clare Foster. Liv has participated in small gigs and in 2017 she was selected as one of several soloists in Ella Fitzgerald ꟷ a Tribute at Addlestone Community Theatre.

Finding various roles in the charity sector had taken her away from her journalist roots, Liv took a course in radio broadcasting. It was here that the tutor recognising her passion for jazz, suggested she find a music radio show. Soon after completing her course Liv was interviewed on the former Croydon Radio. This was soon followed by an invite to become a presenter at the community station. Liv spent four years with the station playing jazz and interviewing over 130 guests. Highlights included Gregory Porter, Clare Teal, Zara McFarlane, Jose James, Courtney Pine, Elaine Delmar and many more. She also introduced a country music show to the station. At the same time, feeling she had re-discovered her media mojo, Liv also had a stint on the newsdesk at Eagle Radio. Croydon Radio closed its broadcasting doors in March 2017.
Liv hopes to bring some of her zest for radio to Jazz London Radio with a soul jazz programme. She not only wants to explore the post-hard bop jazz pioneers who brought soul, gospel and r’n B to their jazz of the sixties but also contemporary artists who aspire to a soul inflected jazz.

 

Matthew Ballester

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I started DJ’ing in the late 80’s. Dj and organiser of Enjoy parties 1989-1995, guest djs included Phil Asher, Norman Jay, Terry Hunter and the late Dj Camacho and more, with live pa’s by Michael Watford and the late Colonel Abrams.

Enjoy parties where held monthly, roughly at some of London’s venues including Woody’s, The Vox, The Garden Club, Scala, Bijou Theatre &The Cross as well as some great photographic studios around London.

i have been a guest dj at a few other parties during the 90’s including The Wag, The Satellite club, MOS, Lost and more.  In around 1997 I had a Sunday show on heart pirate radio which lead to guest sets for Journey By Dj’s.

Had a break from Djing when i started a sign business which filled my free time.

I have continued my love for all types of music with soul and went onto start another business in music promotion.

I was a Co-founder of Rude Awakening Promotions 2000–2007 promoting house music throughout England and Europe.

We promoted for an array of labels including MAW, King Street, Jellybean, Large, Dome and too many more too mention.

More recently started a show on Real House Radio, which has run weekly for the past 5 years. This show is jointly hosted with my school friend Mickey Richards. We have recently played for Mi Casa Es Su Casa which is one of the best parties in London at the moment in my opinion. We also play at The Vault in Putney a few times a year.

I am looking forward to showcasing house music in it’s many forms, including latin, jazz, soul and afro music.

 

Mickey Richards

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Mickey Richards is a DJ/producer originally from Fulham in West London. His love of music developed early on in his life, influenced by the Dub Sound Systems who played at the weekend Blues Parties, held at his father’s Ladbroke Grove home.

School years where spent hanging out with the likes of Darcus Beese (president of Island Records USA), KG (DJ/Producer for All Saints), Bello B (Outlaw Posse/KLF) & the late Stevie Hyper (drum & Bass and Junglist pioneer). He gained inspiration from the Hip Hop, Electro, Jazz and Soul sounds which where the main stay of the dance music industry in those early days.

When the warehouse rave scene began in the late 80’s and the Acid House movement exploded, Mickey was inspired to DJ, he worked at Phuture records on London’s Kings Road Garage and released a number of white labels including “The Journey” a collaboration with DJ Paul Docherty.

When recession and depression hit in the UK, Mickey decided to pack up this Boxes and relocate to Lisbon (Portugal). Here he found his spiritual home and gained recognition from the countries most respected DJ’s, producers and promoters including the young DJ Vibe & Rui Da Silva (USL), Rui Vargas, To’ Riccardi, Belita, and Yen Sung (Portugal’s first female DJ’s).

He stayed for a few years playing at every major club in Portugal from the North to the South including, Fragil & Lux, The Superclub owned by Manuel Reis & Hollywood legend John Malkovic and he was able to reap the rewards once again, of being in a country on the verge of a clubbing phenomenon.

When Mickey returned to England in the early 90’s he teamed up with Dave Jones (Dub Federation) to concentrate on developing his own label (Room Control Records), and teamed up with Caroline Dunkley a UK based agent and manager, she put him in touch with the owners of Pacha London and he was soon taken on as their resident DJ on Saturday nights, where he played for the next few years alongside such DJ legends as; Frankie Knuckles, Tony Humphries, Kenny Dope Gonzalez, Terry Hunter, Jon Cutler, Kenny Carpenter, Ricky Morrison, Phil Asher, Joey Negro & DJ Harvey, he also regularly played at The Cross, Plastic People, Turnmills and various other clubs across London around this time.

Mickey has continued to DJ, whilst juggling a career in the film industry, and in 2013, he started, ‘The Sunday Vibes show’ on Realhousderadio.com, alongside old school friend and fellow DJ Mathew Ballester. Their style is an eclectic mix of Deep Soulful, funky, jazzy, latin, & afro House.

Sophia Alexandra Hall

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Sophia Alexandra Hall is a Swedish born Saxophonist and Presenter based in London. With past careers at the Royal Opera House, the BBC, and the Metropolitan Opera (New York), Sophia is currently breaking onto the airwaves as the Presenter of ‘Sophia’s Big Band Corner’ on the Jazz London Radio alongside her role as the station’s Director of Events. She is also a manager within the music industry and was the first female President of the Oxford University Jazz Orchestra. She is currently a Master’s student at Imperial College Business School and a Music graduate from the University of Oxford.

 

Timbo Biography

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Timbo (Tim Burrell) started DJ’ing in the mid 90’s. He soon started playing warm up sets at London’s legendary ‘The Cross’ nightclub, along with a Saturday night slot at a pirate radio station in North West London. Tim juggled his DJ’ing with a sound engineering career, training in some of London’s top recording and mixing studios. He later moved onto CD Mastering, where he mastered some of the first DJ mix CD’s such as the revered “Journeys By a DJ” series. In 1996 Tim also mastered, DJ’d, and compiled one of the first DJ mix albums from CD using a Sony CD Player with varispeed (well before Pioneer came on the scene). Tim progressed onto vinyl cutting at London’s Townhouse studios where he mastered The Orb’s 1997 album “Orblivion”, Lily Allen’s 2006 debut album “Alright, Still”, and remastered all of Pulp’s back catalogue. Tim has released some of his own creations and remixes under the DON(1) and Yaqui Tribe moniker.

Tim’s DJ style has it’s roots in the original house sound of Chicago, the Balearics, and the New York Garage of the early 90’s. Tim will play anything from a 1991 Garage classic to a contemporary Deep or Tech House track. Many of the Deep House records currently released continue to tip their hat to that original Chicago style. Tim uses a combination of Technics SL1210’s and Traktor.

 

Todd Gordon

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Todd Gordon has established himself as “one of Britain’s most popular singers and entertainers” (Scottish Television). An avid Beatles’ fan until the age of eleven, his musical horizons were broadened when he first heard a Frank Sinatra album. From that moment, he collected almost every recording by Ol’ Blue Eyes and, from there, his interest expanded to jazz and swing, encompassing numerous other renowned singers and instrumentalists.

Further inspiration came in 1975 when he met Ella Fitzgerald prior to one of her shows and then, during the concert, she invited him on stage and sang specially to him. Since then, Gordon has been fortunate enough to meet many more of his idols – including Bing Crosby, Rosemary Clooney, Count Basie, Woody Herman, George Shearing and Tony Bennett, motivating him to immerse himself in the Great American Songbook genre.

Gordon’s interest in music and singing was passionate, yet always private. But in 2000, he took part in a week-long vocal jazz workshop and that changed everything. His stage debut came in 2001 at Scotland’s top jazz club and from that moment on, as the cliché goes, he’s never looked back. In 2003, aged 44, he was booked to open for Dionne Warwick during her UK tour, which prompted him to give up his day job organisng exhibitions. Since then, Gordon has performed frequently at Britain’s top jazz venues, including The Pizza Express Jazz Room, The 606 in Chelsea and the world-renowned Ronnie Scott’s. He’s also performed at The Plaza and The Algonquin hotels in New York – where he even did a duet with actor Christopher Walken, singing “I’ve Got You Under My Skin.”