The Christmas season is one of nostalgia and tradition, and this week’s jazz acquires that festive tone, with lots of new twists on looking back.
Tonight The Puppini Sisters fill Birmingham’s Town Hall with retro-chic and their 1940s-style close harmony singing, delivered with thoroughly contemporary attitude and a swinging band in support.
In addition to the wartime classics and the knowing pop songs, you can expect some specially arranged Christmas songs, too.
They are more likely to rework the Andrews Sisters’ version of Santa Claus Is Coming To Town than Slade’s Merry Christmas Everybody, and for this we should give thanks.
Christmas With The Puppini Sisters is at 8pm and tickets are £15 and £18.50 from www.thsh.co.uk or on 0121 780 3333.
Tomorrow evening the fun continues at the Town Hall with A Swinging Christmas, featuring the BBC Big Band with Clare Teal and featuring special appearances by Matthew Ford and Jamelia.
I’ve Got My Love To Keep Me Warm, Baby It’s Cold Outside, The Christmas Song and many others will get an airing, proving once more that when it comes to Christmas and winter songs, the oldies are usually the winners. Though Superstar will be the exception to that theory, of course.
The concert will be recorded and broadcast on BBC Radio 2’s Big Band Special later in the evening.
A Swinging Christmas starts at 7.30pm, and tickets are £13.50 and £19.50 from www.thsh.co.uk or on 0121 780 3333.
Earlier tomorrow evening the Rush Hour Blues sessions are rounded off for the year with the grand old man of Birmingham jazz, Andy Hamilton and his Blue Notes.
The music starts at 5.30pm and runs till 7pm. It’s in the Symphony Hall foyer bar and it’s free.
Stratford Jazz is offering a Christmas Special, too, with the Beebe Quintet led from the saxophone by Chris Aldridge.
Simon Beddoe is on trumpet, Roger Innis on guitar, Levi French on piano and Neil Bullock is on drums.
This is a popular gig and popular band so best to book in advance – and you save money if you do.
Tickets are £10 in advance or £12 on the door (if you can get in), the evening starts at 8pm, and you can find out more at www.stratfordjazz.org.uk
On Wednesday things turn Adderleyish at the Lichfield Guildhall, with the welcome return to the spotlight of saxophonist Chris Gumbley’s Tribute To Cannonball.
The tunes, among them Mercy, Mercy, Mercy, come from the book of Julian “Cannonball” Adderley who led one of the most in-demand bands of the early 1960s.
Completing Gumbley’s outstanding band are Neil Yates on trumpet, Dan Nicholls on piano, Tom Hill on double bass and Carl Hemingsley on drums.
The music starts at 8pm, tickets are £10 or less, and are available from www.lichfieldarts.org.uk or by calling 01543 262223.