Double bassist Michael Janisch is the founder and main man behind the Whirlwind Recordings label, and that makes sense, because Michael is something of a whirlwind himself.
He blew in from the States a few years ago, where he had chosen music and won a scholarship to Berklee after his American football career was scuppered by a hamstring injury.
On Tuesday, he is co-leader of just such a band, the Aruán Ortiz & Michael Janisch Quintet, with Ortiz on piano, Raynald Colom on trumpet, Marc Ayza on drums and, a very special guest, Greg Osby on alto saxophone.
The band released a superb album last year called Banned In London, and squeezed in a gig at The Cross in Moseley at the time.
It’s at the Birmingham Conservatoire Recital Hall on Tuesday at 7.30pm, and it’s a rare opportunity to hear these outstanding musicians in a really intimate space. Tickets are £12 and this is a Jazzlines concert - more information at www.thsh.co.uk
* The Greyish Quartet has grown into a quintet and acquired a new name. Hansu-Tori – hansu is a Korean term for water and tori is Japanese for bird, so I’m led to understand – is David Grey on piano, Sam Wooster on trumpet, Nick Rundle on tenor saxophone, Nick Jurd on bass and Jim Bashford on drums, and they are at The Spotted Dog, Digbeth, on Tuesday evening. Entry is free, with a donation recommended, the music starts at 9pm, and there is more at www.blambirmingham.co.uk
* Meanwhile, over at the Jam House on Tuesday, the Chris Young Ensemble is on the stand. Chris is a lively young alto player with strong compositions and a strong band to play them. It starts at 8.30pm and entry is free.
* Here are the week’s other jazz highlights:
Friday: Vocalist Roy Forbes and his band play the first Birmingham Jazz Club Night in their autumn programme. Roy was a regular guest singer with Andy Hamilton’s Blue Notes and brings a relaxed cool to any room. It starts at 7.45pm in the upstairs room of The Red Lion on Warstone Lane, Jewellery Quarter. BJ members get in free/modest charge for the rest. More at www.birminghamjazz.co.uk
Saturday: Nerija and Ezra are two bands presented by Young Warriors at The Arena in Wolverhampton. It’s a showcase for up and coming jazz talent and follows an afternoon workshop. The workshop is free but spaces are limited, the gig is at 5pm and all welcome for £10 a ticket (£8 concessions).
Saturday: Liam Noble’s Brother Face, with Shabaka Hutchings on saxophone and Chris Batchelor on trumpet, are at The Hive in Shrewsbury from 8pm. Tickets £12. More at www.hiveonline.org.uk .