Milk Crate Bandits

Heading back to the roots of jazz

And after last week’s incredible big band concert, Georgia Straight Jazz Society’s concert this Thursday goes back to the roots of jazz, with a smaller ensemble of musicians who proudly bring you the music of New Orleans.

The Milk Crate Bandits make music to make you dance, smile and party – it’s music born on the streets. Walking down the streets of Vancouver you’ll see them on their stolen plastic thrones and playing the sounds of New Orleans.

This Thursday, at 7:30 p.m., it’s our turn to listen to them in the comfort and warmth of The Avalanche Bar.

In October 2016 the Milk Crate Bandits travelled to New Orleans to record two EPs with New Orleans great Kevin Louis on Trumpet. The first, The Neighbourhood, has been met with rave reviews and the November 2017 tour will see the release of the second EP.

The band is made up of a cosmopolitan lot – from Australia to New York to Comox Valley.

Jack Ray is an Australian banjoist, guitarist and vocalist who has performed and recorded with some of Australia’s and the world’s finest musicians. Jack is currently based in Vancouver where he leads The Milk Crate Bandits as well performing regularly with The Jen Hodge All Stars, The Phoenix Four and The Rossi Gang. In 2016 Jack also founded the online learning platform Jazz Banjo Academy.

Jennifer Hodge, a busy Courtenay-born, Vancouver-based bass player, bandleader, and arranger, is a versatile musician who can be found playing with a wide variety of artists all over the world. Jen’s particular expertise in the arena of traditional jazz has taken her to stages all over Canada, the USA, China, Spain, France, the U.K., and the Caribbean. Jen is a well-known perennial favourite with the jazz society.

Brad Shigeta moved to New York City in the Fall of 1990 via Montreal. Upon arriving in New York City to study with trombonist Jimmy Knepper, he met legendary Count Basie Orchestra trombonist Benny Powell. Through Benny, he was introduced to Clifford Jordan and was groomed by Benny to take over his chair in the Clifford Jordan Big Band. He is currently in a Duke Ellington alumni small group under the direction of Barrie Lee Hall, as well as a regular member of Vince Giordano’s Nighthawks (music of the 10s, 20s), John Gill’s Jazz Kings (traditional New Orleans music) and the Manhattan Ragtime Orchestra in New York City.

Chris O’Dea is a saxophonist and clarinetist from Sydney, Australia. He is a founding member of The Brassholes, which has had numerous TV appearances and is currently performing around with the travelling circus and jazz show ‘Scotch and Soda’, which has just finished a six-month run in Berlin. Chris is also a member of various bands, including The Corridors, The Basement Big Band, and the Arthur Washington Quintet.

Admission for this show is $10 for Society members, $12 for non-members. Visit georgiastraightjazz.com for the full 2017-18 performance calendar.

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