Could you make our Big Band bigger?

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Ribble Valley Jazz and Blues’ new Big Band Project, launched earlier this year, has recruited 20 musicians ready and willing to prove that Clitheroe and the Ribble Valley is fast becoming an important centre for the development and growth of jazz music.

Having the fine facilities of The Grand and The Atrium at their disposal, the Ribble Valley Jazz and Blues’ management team feels that a Big Band Project will complement its programme of monthly jazz gigs, and an Annual Jazz Festival due to take place over the May Day Bank Holiday weekend.

The aim is to bring together groups of musicians wanting to broaden their musical skills and experience in a big band format, or who want to share their already established talent with newer players. The skill-sharing experience will be a focus for the development of a Big Band, giving a chance for younger and older musicians to learn from each other, buiding confidence and technique as a lead-up to getting a real buzz out of performances in front of live audiences.

The Big Band Project will have Paul Rigby as its leader. Paul, who has a massive reputation for developing jazz talent in Lancashire and the North West, is keen to welcome more musicians from around the area irrespective of age, musical background or choice of instrument. So, rhythm, reeds or brass, a Ribble Valley Big Band is likely to give a thrilling experience to players, although Paul has admitted to a shortage of brass! A few more trumpeters and trombonists would make the rhythm and reed sections very happy indeed.

Big Band practice sessions are planned for Monday evenings, with the first to be arranged for late April. So the door is open for more musicians to contact Geoff Jackson for a registration form, either by e-mail to, or by phone on 07870 908159.