Pianist / scholar William Bares received his Ph.D in ethnomusicology in 2009 from Harvard University under the mentorship of Ingrid Monson, the Quincy Jones Professor of African American Music. He spent much of the past decade in Europe researching European jazz and playing professionally on the European scene. He has published articles on transatlantic jazz in Jazzforschung, Jazz Research Journal, American Music, and the Grove Dictionary of American Music, among others. He taught at Harvard University, Brown University, Berklee College of Music and the New England Conservatory before taking a job as assistant professor of music and director of jazz studies at the University of North Carolina, Asheville, in 2011. Bares is active in Asheville’s thriving musical community as an educator, musician and promoter. He was the solo pianist in the Blue Ridge Orchestra’s debut of Rhapsody in Blue, and is currently the curator of the Sunday Jazz Showcase at Asheville’s famed Isis Music Hall. He was also coordinator of Ecomusicologies 2014: Dialogues—an international meeting of scholars and musicians that took place in Asheville in October of 2014. His book, Eternal Triangle: American Jazz in European Postmodern, is forthcoming.
George McKay joined UEA as Professor of Media Studies in November 2014. Previously he was Professor of Cultural Studies at the University of Salford (2005-14), where he established and directed the Communication, Cultural & Media Studies Research Centre, and Professor of Cultural Studies at UCLan (2000-05).
He is currently engaged as an Arts & Humanities Research Council (AHRC) Leadership Fellow for its Connected Communities Programme (2012-18). In 2015-16 this includes The Impact of Festivals project, in collaboration with research partner EFG London Jazz Festival, and postdoctoral research assistant Dr Emma Webster. He is also co-investigator (2015-18) on the EU Heritage+ project, Cultural Heritage and Improvised Music in European Festivals (CHIME).
Among his books are Senseless Acts of Beauty: Cultures of Resistance since the Sixties (Verso, 1996), DiY Culture: Party & Protest in Nineties Britain (ed., Verso, 1998), Glastonbury: A Very English Fair (Gollancz, 2000),Community Music: A Handbook (co-ed. with Pete Moser, Russell House, 2004), Circular Breathing: The Cultural Politics of Jazz in Britain (Duke UP, 2005), Radical Gardening: Politics, Idealism and Rebellion in the Garden (Frances Lincoln, 2011), Shakin’ All Over: Popular Music and Disability (University of Michigan Press, 2013), andThe Pop Festival: History, Music, Media, Culture (ed., Bloomsbury, 2015).
He was founding co-editor in 2002 of Social Movement Studies: Journal of Social, Cultural and Political Protest (Routledge), and associate editor (1993-2002) of the BAAS Paperback Series (Edinburgh UP). He was special issue editor of the journal Popular Music (28:3; 2009) on the theme of popular music and disability. He currently co-edits the Connected Communities: Creating a New Knowledge Landscape series for Policy Press, is a member of the editorial board of Jazz Research Journal and consulting editor of Social Movement Studies.
Professor McKay’s website is georgemckay.org; it contains comprehensive information about his research—including lots of open access links—books, events, reviews, even a little about his music (semi-pro jazz double bassist).
Tony Whyton is Professor of Jazz Studies at Birmingham City University (BCU). His critically acclaimed books ‘Jazz Icons: Heroes, Myths and the Jazz Tradition’ (Cambridge University Press, 2010) and ‘Beyond A Love Supreme: John Coltrane and the Legacy of an Album’ (Oxford University Press, 2013) have sought to develop cross-disciplinary methods of musical enquiry. As an editor, Whyton published the Jazz volume of the ‘Ashgate Library of Essays on Popular Music’ in 2011 and continues to work as co-editor of the Jazz Research Journal (Equinox). In 2014, he founded the new Routledge series ‘Transnational Studies in Jazz’ alongside BCU colleague Dr Nicholas Gebhardt. Gebhardt and Whyton also edited ‘The Cultural Politics of Jazz Collectives: This Is Our Music’ (Routledge) in 2015, a collection that explores the ways in which musician-led collectives offer a powerful model for rethinking jazz practices in the post-war period.
From 2010-2013, Whyton was Project Leader for the ground-breaking HERA-funded Rhythm Changes: Jazz Cultures and European Identities project (www.rhythmchanges.net), where he led a consortium of 13 researchers working across 7 Universities in 5 countries. He is currently the Project Leader for CHIME, a 3-year JPI-Heritage Plus funded project that explores the relationship between jazz festivals and heritage sites (www.chimeproject.eu).
Espen Eriksen is perhaps best known for leading his own group, Espen Eriksen Trio, which has released three records on the acclaimed Norwegian label Rune Grammofon. The trio, referred to by BBC, as “superb musicians at the top of their game” have been credited by critics worldwide for having their own unique melodic and minimalistic style”. Eriksen has toured in Norway, Denmark, Iceland, England, Scotland, Germany, Netherlands, Switzerland, Spain, Russia, Greece, South Korea, Malaysia, Indonesia and South Africa.
Eriksen also has a duo with trumpeter Gunnar Halle. Together they have released two records with folk songs and psalms from Norway and played about 100 concerts throughout Europe. Together with Halle, Eriksen is also plays in a trio with the Scottish-based Norwegian guitarist Haftor Medbøe. Eriksen has also played with musicians including Eivind Aarset, Andy Sheppard, Thomas Strønen, Audun Erlien and Håkon Kornstad.
As a journalist Eriksen has worked at Norwegian Broadcasting Company (NRK) since 2004. Here he has hosted different jazz programs, reviewed records and produced live recordings. His work at NRK often focuses on jazz that pushes the edges of its definition both towards the popular and the avant-garde. Eriksen has also taught jazz history and jazz analysis on bachelor and masters level at both The University of Oslo and Norwegian Academy of Music.
Luca Vitali is one of the founding members of Europe Jazz Media – a community of jazz journalists, media professionals and broadcasters. He has organised various contemporary music and performing arts events, and since 2010 has worked as one of the artistic curators of Bologna’s Angelica Festival. He has collaborated with various Norwegian institutions in Italy (Royal Norwegian Embassy, Royal Norwegian Consulate in Bologna), as well as with Jazzforum, Music Norway, Listen to Norway and Jazznytt.
Dave Kane was born in Bangor, N.Ireland where his first formal education in music was with acclaimed composer Brian Irvine. He then moved to England to complete a BA in Contemporary Music and a Masters degree in Composition from Leeds College of music. Kane is a self taught virtuoso of the double bass and has performed and recorded internationally at many established jazz festivals, including; Grenoble, Strasbourg, Vilnius, Glasgow, Edinburgh, Banlieues Bleues (Paris), Oslo, Vossa Jazz festival, Mai Jazz, Stavanger Tou scene, Stockholm, Llubjanna, Maribor, and London Jazz festival.
Currently based in Leeds, Kane is a founder of L.I.M.A. (Leeds Improvised Music Association) and is the manic driving force, musical director and composer for the L.I.M.A orchestra, a large jazz ensemble featuring some the UK’s finest young musicians.
He is also a member of the internationally acclaimed trio BDK, with pianist Matthew Bourne and drummer Steve Davis. They have received rave reviews and enthralled many large audiences at some of the most established jazz festivals across Europe. The trio’s debut album “Lost Something” was voted one of the best Albums of 2008 by BBC Radio 3.
As a bandleader and composer, Kane writes a vast amount of music for many ensembles of varying size and style. He has had his music performed on BBC Radio 3, and featured as guest artist on the channels specialist show ‘Jazz on 3’, completing both commissions and live studio sessions for the program.
As a composer Kane has been commissioned by; Radio 3, London Jazz Festival, LIMA festival, The Stavanger Kitchen Orchestra (Norway), Yorkshire Dance, Manchester Jazz festival, Moving on Music, Phoenix Dance, and many more. Kane has also been a recent participant in the prestigious ‘Take Five’ scheme: an artist development scheme for the most promising young jazz musicians in the UK, organised by Serious International Music Producers, the PRSF, and the Jerwood Foundation. More recent awards include – The PRS New Music Biennial Award 2014. (in collaboration with classical composer Piers Hellawell) and Kane has recently been nominated for the prestigious Paul Hamlyn Award for composition.
José Dias’ PhD research on European jazz networks, alongside his association with the intra-European 12 Points jazz festival and the Portuguese jazz netlabel Sintoma Records, has led to his appointment as delegate for 12 Points, around the subject of which he is currently organising a monograph on European jazz, as co-editor, in collaboration with Tony Whyton (Birmingham City University /CHIME /Rhythm Changes), Gerry Godley (Leeds College of Music /12 Points) and Kenneth Killeen (Improvised Music Company /12 Points).
In Portugal, José Dias has been a leader in the establishment of platforms promoting knowledge exchange between academia and the music sectors – musicians, promoters, festivals, record labels, journalists, educators and researchers. This engagement has been channelled into initiatives such as Researchers in Residence (Universidade Nova de Lisboa/ Festa do Jazz Lisboa 2016), featuring high-profile international music researchers and promoters; and Future Jazz Talks (Universidade Nova de Lisboa/ Clean Feed Records/ Europe Jazz Network), as part of the 2016 EJN Board Meeting, in June 2016. José Dias is currently finishing the filming and editing of the documentary Those Who Make it Happen, on Portuguese jazz and its mapping in the European jazz scene, for release in July 2016.
As a musician, José Dias has performed with European and American artists at numerous international music festivals and venues, delivered master classes on composition and performance, and released a number of albums as both leader and sideman. As an educator, Jose Dias established and developed the course programme for the prestigious JBJazz School Lisbon, where he held the post of Pedagogical Director (2004-2012).
Niels Overgaard has been dubbed “no ordinary jazz blogger” by Danish national broadsheet Politiken, having over the past decade become Denmark’s most respected and prolific jazz critics. With a deep interest in the music’s historical framework, Niels Overgaard writes predominantly about Danish jazz and, through his unstinting commitment to his interest, has gained an unparalleled overview of jazz from the region.
Tom Bancroft is a drummer, composer, bandleader and educator. Trained as a medical doctor Tom now makes a living from music. He has played with musicians ranging from Sun Ra and Martyn Bennett to Geri Allen and Bill Wells.
He leads occasional big band Orchestro Interrupto, group Trio Red,and the non-jazz electronic/experimental group Vincent – with Japanese avant grade pianist Satoko Fujii, as well as being a long term member of Trio AAB and a founder member of the Pathhead Music Collective. In 2007 he won the BBC Jazz Award for Innovation and a Herald Angel award for his kids music show Kidsamonium and in 2004 won the Creative Scotland Award. He has devised/produced a range of events like; Clandemonium – a 2000 strong jazz flash mob; Heidland – a fictional multi-media recreation of Pathhead in 5 spaces in Edinburgh’s Dancebase; and Multi Story Karma Park – the multi media jazz big band, dance, and video show that first introduced Martyn Bennett to Michael Marra. He has also composed music for dance, film, radio, and TV.
After running Scottish jazz record company Caber Music for 7 years, he now runs the music education company ABC Creative Music (www.abccreativemusic.com) with his twin brother Phil. The company produces music creativity education resources for mainstream schools and has over 7000 teachers signed up to use lessons teaching creativity and improvisation to young children.
Emma Webster is currently working as the Research Associate at the University of East Anglia on the one-year AHRC Connected Communities-funded project, the Impact of Festivals, with Professor George McKay, in collaboration with the EFG London Jazz Festival. She is a co-founder and co-Director of Live Music Exchange, a hub for anyone interested in live music research, and is a co-author on a three-part history of live music in Britain, as well as co-authoring the Edinburgh live music census report and the Association of Independent Festivals’ six-year report. Emma received her doctorate from the University of Glasgow in 2011; her research was a study of live music promotion in the UK, and her field of interest is live music, festivals, and cultural policy. Prior to returning to academia, Emma worked professionally for eight years in music in a variety of roles and genres including opera, ‘world’ music, acid techno, festivals and digital distribution.