WHEN it comes to jazz, the tiny hamlet of Redford is certainly punching well above its weight.
For the third year running, the village hall played host to top international jazz musicians the Joe Stilgoe Trio.
The event was organised by Mike Reynolds and his wife Lesley, members of the village hall committee, to get the community together, but it also raised more than £1,200 towards a renovation project at the hall.
“The sell-out audience were captivated by a mesmerising display of outstanding skill and musical mastery,” said Mr Reynolds.
“Joe and his Trio provided an unforgettable and outstanding evening of musicianship, humour and entertainment and at the end of the performance after the encore, the Trio were applauded with a fully-deserved standing ovation.”
The village hall had been decorated with holly and ivy and together with low-level lighting, organisers were hoping to recreate some of the feel of London’s Ronnie Scott’s in Redford.
And on the menu was a supper of British cheeses, including Barkham Blue, and a range of bread supplied by The Hungry Guest at Petworth.
Joe Stilgoe, voice and piano, Tom Farmer on bass and former Midhurst school pupil Ben Reynolds are all internationally-renowned musicians, but they were delighted to accept the repeat invitation to play to an appreciative and packed village hall in Redford.
Joe is a singer, pianist, composer and entertainer, touring and having appeared at the legendary London night club Ronnie Scott’s, the Royal Festival Hall, the Queen Elizabeth Hall, The Barbican, London Jazz Festival, jazz clubs and festivals all over the world.
Ben Reynolds was brought up in Woolbeding and was a pupil in Midhurst at the primary, intermediate and the former Midhurst Grammar School.
Acknowledged as one of the most gifted drummers in the country, he plays with names such as Clare Teal, Joe Stilgoe, Fraud (winners of Ronnie Scott’s and BBC Jazz awards) and the Sam Crockatt Quartet (winners of the 2009 Parliamentary Jazz Best Album).
Ben is also a writer and performer in BBC Radio 4’s The Horne Section with its third series on air next year.
Tom Farmer is an accomplished and highly-rated bass player well-known in jazz circles, having played in award-winning band Empirical and also Dice Factory, one of the most creative bands on the new young Brit-Jazz scene.