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Josh Kemp's Coltrane Project: A Love Supreme

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Polish Social and Cultural Association POSK 238-246 King Street London W6 0RF United Kingdom

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Saturday 01 October 2022

Bar 7:30 pm / music 8:30 pm

The Coltrane Project: A Love Supreme

This performance is part of a major UK tour exploring the lyrical and spiritual music of John Coltrane, including his masterpiece - the Love Supreme suite. The show is accompanied with video projections to provide a multimedia experience and allow audience to connect with deeply with the music on many levels.

This performance by Josh Kemp’s Coltrane Project is the result of a deep study of the original material, yielding an authentic yet personal recreation of the Love Supreme suite. The full programme emphasises the lyrical and communicative music of John Coltrane and is accompanied by a video backdrop of images of Coltrane and including real-time scrolling of the words of the Coltrane’s prayer for the fourth movement ‘Psalm’ which provide the basis for the improvisation, and carry the meaning and message of the whole work.

Josh Kemp, is a musician with a unique approach, a rich, melodic and lyrical sound whatever the context. A saxophonist deeply rooted in the tradition, Josh cut his teeth playing jazz standards and the blues is always a central reference in his playing. A unique sound, combining both contemporary inflections and deeply swinging playing has made him a regular at jazz clubs and festivals around the UK, from Ronnie Scott’s, to St Ives and Newcastle. As band leader and composer, Josh leads a variety of projects across many styles, united by a common communicative and melodic approach.

Josh is a member of the e17 Jazz collective based in Walthamstow, London. After studying philosophy at Oxford, Josh trained at the Guildhall School of Music and Trinity Laban Conservatoire, winning prizes and scholarships for his playing and studies. Since then he has released 5 albums and completed 4 Arts Council funded tours, including collaborations with Pianist Tim Lapthorn and Organist Ross Stanley. Current projects include a standards quartet with Nigel Price and Andy Clynedert, and work with singers such as Liz Fletcher and Shireen Francis as part of his Sunday night sessions in Walthamstow.

A Love Supreme is Coltrane's masterpiece, a work of deep spiritual power, representing a struggle for purity, an expression of gratitude, and an acknowledgement that the musician's talent comes from a higher source.

A suite with four parts: "Acknowledgement", "Resolution", "Pursuance", and "Psalm", the music ranges from hard bop to modal and free jazz in an epic aural poem to man's place in God's plan. The album's hymn-like quality transcends the normal limits of jazz genre, to allow for an intensely personal and moving communication with the audience.

Rolling Stone called it a "legendary album-long hymn of praise" and stated, "the indelible four-note theme of the first movement, 'Acknowledgement,' is the humble foundation of the suite. But Coltrane's majestic, often violent blowing (famously described as 'sheets of sound') is never self-aggrandising. Aloft with his classic quartet...Coltrane soars with nothing but gratitude and joy. You can't help but go with him."

Josh Kemp - tenor sax/bass clarinet

Alex Hutton - piano

Oli Hayhurst - double bass

Dave Storey - drums

“A fierce talent” Jazzwise Magazine

“A subtle, highly nuanced, and original sound ” Time Out