Notes on Tommy Smith Youth Jazz Orchestra, The Tolbooth, Stirling 5 November 2017 #jazz

Seeing this orchestra is always inspiring. The talent of the young people always blows me away. I am inspired by the orchestra’s encouragement of young people to attend by letting them experience these concerts for free. Often there are teenagers in the audience but this time it was encouraging to see quite a few under 10s in the crowd as well.

The programming of these gigs is always varied. Some crowd pleasing tunes mixed in with different pieces that allow the musicians to perform more challenging work. There is something for everyone. In this concert we heard Witchcraft and All Or Nothing, confidently sung by Luca Manning. An assured bass introduction led into Norwegian Wood by the Beatles. We also heard Black Friday by Steely Dan, Love For Sale by Cole Porter and Yes or No. There was a saxophone solo by Eve Bolars (sp) on Michelangelo. I was so happy to see quite a few young women in the orchestra this time including a drummer.

I’ve wanted to hear Luca Manning sing live for some time after watching various YouTube clips and hearing him on the radio and I was not disappointed. This concert was a great showcase of new talent who showcased their improvisational skills and played with verve and exuberance.

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