Jazz is one of those things that divides people, like a certain yeasty spread. I’m not massively into it, but every so often an album will come along that grabs my attention in a big way – Kind of Blue by Miles Davis, Konfusion by Skalpel and now Kansa Smitty’s new single “Riders”.
The !K7 collective have just relaunched Ever Records and are pleased to announce the first signing is Kansas Smitty’s, a sextet born in their own atmospheric basement bar in East London that boasts some of the best jazz performances in the capital as well as classic cocktails, led by American composer and arranger Giacomo Smith on alto sax and clarinet, and feature some of the most talented musicians around: Pete Horsfall on trumpet, Alec Harper on tenor sax, Dave Archer on guitar, Ferg Ireland on bass, Joe Webb on piano and Will Cleasby rounding out the rhythm section on drums. The band are sharing their new single “Riders” online now.
Kansas Smitty’s, born in an atmospheric basement bar in East London that boasts some of the best jazz performances in the capital, as well as classic cocktails, all this speaks to our ideas of what jazz should be. It’s not a static concept, but a moving, breathing, living state of mind. The Smitty’s have never stopped developing their sound, steeped as much in early Kansas City Swing as in modern-day Spiritual Jazz. Yet what remains constant is their absolute non-flinching dedication to quality music and the life that emanates from their each and every tone. We’re very proud to have found them across international borders, and are very much looking forward to working with them to release their new album in 2020 on Ever Records.
The concept of a jazz band that owns its own bar is unprecedented, almost as unprecedented as a band who premieres new music at each show. Their venue has supported hundreds of bands since it opened its doors, providing a stage for them to showcase their own music and reach new audiences.
“‘Riders’ is a soundtrack for long midnight journeys,” says Giacomo Smith, composer and clarinettist on the band’s new single. “Night’s fallen and the old-world mysticism of Europe is in your mind’s eye. I started the song while on the road and finished when I joined guitarist Dave Archer at Smitty’s bar in London. It’s a cinematic track and the flagship tune of a new sound.”
See Kansas Smitty’s live:
23 November – Ronnie Scott’s Presents …Kansas Smitty’s House Band, Alexandra Palace (London, UK) ticket link
19 December – Guy Barker’s Big Band Christmas feat. Kansas Smitty Big Four – Royal Albert Hall (London, UK) ticket link