The Birmingham Conservatoire jazz course has produced some very strong musicians over the last decade or so and its graduates are now fairly far-flung, so it is always a treat to have one of them return.
On Wednesday, singer Lizzy Parks is back in town with her band to fill the monthly Jazz Club slot at the Rainbow pub in Digbeth.
Early on Lizzy moved into the soul-jazz area of the music and brought an understanding of classic jazz singing (she can scat like Ella when she feels like it) to a much more contemporary kind of jazz, happier in a club than concert hall context.
Her second CD, Raise The Roof came out last year but we don’t get many chances to hear her live with her own band, which includes Rob Barron, Fulvio Sigurta, Riaan Vosloo and Graham Fox, so seize this opportunity.
Doors open at 8.30pm, the band is on at 9pm and it costs £3 to get in.
It’s a Birmingham Jazz gig – see www.birminghamjazz.co.uk for more.
* On Thursday, Andy Hamilton holds one of his regular Jam Nights – you never know just who might be on the stand. It starts at 9pm (doors half an hour before) at Bearwood Corks Club and entry is £4. More at www.bearwoodjazz.co.uk
* The Waterworks Jazz Club has a tribute night to its founder and former president Barry Phillips, who died earlier this year.
Barry was a trombonist and a pretty good dancer, too, and one of the bands he played in was Barbara And All That Jazz, so it is fitting that Barbara and the band are performing on Saturday.
The club meets at The Nautical Club in Bishopsgate Street, it starts at 8.30pm and entry is £7 for members, £8 for non-members. Find out more at www.waterworksjazz.com
* Busy trumpeter and one of the stars of the Walsall Jazz Orchestra, Ray Butcher leads his own Quintet at Stratford Jazz’s regular Sunday spot, and marks its return to the Oak Room in the White Swan in Stratford-upon-Avon.
It’s a strong band with Tim Amann on piano, Ian Hill on saxophone, Mike Green on bass and Miles Levin on drums.
Entry is free but the gig is helped by the traditional raffle, so give generously. It starts at 8pm and for more on this intrepid club go to www.stratfordjazz.org.uk
* The Scarlet Pimpernel in Tennal Road, Harborne, has regular Sunday afternoon jazz masterminded by pianist Edgar Macias and this Sunday he has a very special guest with his trio in the form of saxophonist Simon Spillett.
It starts at 3pm and it’s free. Call 0121 426 0930 for details.