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Please take a moment to visit our new Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/kennyballjuniorandhisjazzmen

 

WELCOME TO OUR  WEBSITE

A great night was had by all at Goring On Thames on Friday 12th August. A full venue and appreciative audience bodes well for the jazz scene. A couple of enforced changes to our line up which included the great Ron Drake on Clarinet and, by request of Goring's organiser, Steve Rushton on drums. The band played 3 great sets with the audience baying for more at the end of the evening, they were up dancing in the aisles too. Syd, our regular soundman was away in France and it was good to have Acker's ex soundman Les Squire's in charge of the sound and Robin Cracknell helping out too. We look forward to returning to Goring in the future... 

HUGH LEDIGO

I've received an email regarding our pianist / musical director Hugh Ledigo asking if he is well and still performing. You can find Hugh on his website to contact him direct or order his range of C.D's at www.hughledigo.co.com

 

JOHN BENNETT

Be sure to check out John Bennett's page on here with more memorabilia and email enquiries about the band history .... 

 

Nice to get feedback from our supporters via email ... Here are a few printable ones..


Hi Syd,

We saw the band at Wavendon Stables last week absolutely fabulous !

So good to hear those great songs again played by world class musicians.
We miss Kenny and Acker and all those other great jazzmen so keep playing that won
derful music as long as you can.

very best to Keith and the boys

Peter Cartwright
 

Some previous emails below...

 

Hello

Just wanted to say that we attended the concert at Southend last night – we had seat 4 and 5 front row – didn’t know what to expect but WOW it was amazing. The talent and skill of all the musicians was incredible. Most importantly the band were human – a rarity nowadays. We would have loved to have said this directly to them but we were walking back to our hotel and as we didn’t know the area we were a little cautious.

Many thanks and really hoping we can attend another concert at some point ( I am a teacher so will have to wait till half term now!)

Kind regards

Billie and Geoff.

So, to Billie and Geoff, please come and see us again and make yourself known to Syd, who sells the CD's in the interval.

This is a copy of another email I recieved regarding the same concert .... :-

Dear Syd , Firstly may I say how much we enjoyed our evening listening to the band at Southend, that goes without saying, but enjoyed all the more as we have not seen them for so long.  We went home on a high (no drugs involved!!!!!!  apart from the usual, needed  by us wrinklies ! )                                    Hope you dont mind me contacting you, all the best,  Mo Beasley.

No Mo, as I wrote earlier it is so nice to get feedback from the audience and we look forward to seeing you again, come and say Hi after the show in the foyer.....

 

   On Monday 8th July 2014 we were asked to appear on The Simon Lederman show at BBC Radio London. Unfortunately I couldn't add it to the website in time for the broadcast but here it is on YouTube:


BBC Radio London 94.9 - Interview and live session, Monday 8th July 2014

 

   Because of the short notice we had Alan Bateman on trumpet and Ian Bateman on trombone as Ben Cummings and John Bennett were away. Kenny Junior was interviewed by Simon and the band played Samantha and Midnight in Moscow.... The producer, Mel, and Simon Lederman were blown away by our performance and hopes to get us back on in the very near future. 

   Unfortunately our trombone player, John Bennett, is still undergoing treatment for a minor cancer problem, the treatment is ongoing and leaves John very tired and he is not expected to be available for gigs until the treatment ends. John has asked me to thank you for all the messages he's recieved wishing him a speedy recovery We all wish John well and pray for a complete and speedy recovery. Until such time we have been fortunate enough to secure the services of Ian Bateman, 11 years with Acker Bilk's band, until John is fit and well again.

   Acker Bilk .....

   On Sunday the 2nd November Syd, our road manager, and myself went to The BBC studio's in London to record an interview with Clare Teal, which was broadcast on Radio 2  Sunday 9th November. Clare was interviewing Petula Clark for the show that evening and, when they came out of the studio to the Green Room, passed on the bad news of Acker Bilk's passing that afternoon, they were both visibly upset as we all were. The word went round the newsroom like wildfire and as I was in the studio at the time was invited to do a TV interview for BBC News, of course I accepted and it was an honour to speak about Acker and Dad's 60+ year friendship.

   Talking of Petula Clark, my father used to introduce the band hit Sukiyaki at concerts and tell a story about wondering what to call it. He said that he met Petula in a Chinese Restaurant in the Edgware Road, after recording it at Maida Vale Studio's, and had asked her if she knew any Japanese words to call the song. She came up with the title name, Sukiyaki, which was a meal that she'd seen in a Japanese restaurant menu. We asked her if the story was true and after a few moments thought she said that she had, so it was true all the time.

Radio four Midweek Special

   It was a pleasure for me to to be invited to appear on Radio 4's Midweek Special on December 3rd. Libby Purvis presents the show and her guests were, apart from myself, Lucy Cooke the wildlife expert talking about the Sloth and it's habits. David and Ben Crystal, Father and Son authors whose subject was British dialects and an American lady named Angie Marchese who is an expert on Elvis Presley who actually works at Gracelands but is currently touring exhibiting Elvis memorabilia.

    If you missed it then just ..   Click here to listen to the show

(link to mp3 on BBC website)
 

2015

   In 2015 we will be introducing a fresh face to the line up. Our bass player, Bill Coleman, due to a heavy workload both playing and teaching the bass, is leaving us after around 10 years. We wish Bill all the best and no doubt we will see him here and there in the future. Bill's replacement will be John Day who was with the Acker Bilk band  for several years right up until Acker's death. 

  We have several dates in for next year that are confirmed with more to follow and they are listed on the dates page.

  For the last two years from time to time a film crew and Producer have been following us around making a documentary about the band, They even came to Poland with us for a one nighter in November 2013. They are an independent company and The BBC have shown interested for the BBC 4 Channel. We are still waiting for news of a broadcast and will let you know as soon as we know.

   We are also recording selected live concerts with the view of releasing a half and half double C.D. of live and new studio tracks for release in early 2015

Kenny Ball Junior and his Jazzmen, live in Poland

 

   My Father never stopped planning for the future all of his life and right up to the end he was teaching, No!, telling me, how I was to keep the band going after he'd gone. Two nights before he died he was writing the set list for the concert that we were doing in Grantham just a few days later and that was the way he was. A great Father, Entertainer and Musician who loved performing, loved his audiences and never forgot where he'd come from and who had made Kenny Ball a household name. We look forward to seeing you somewhere in the future ...... Kenny Ball Junior

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Syd Says ....

With Kenny's passing it was inevitable that we would lose a few gigs, mostly private functions where Kenny's presence was a must. However we were fortunate that most of the Theatres kept faith in both the band and their supporters to still come along and we thank you very much for that. It has enabled us to Keep the same line up of musicians which was Kenny's wish. It has been encouraging that, without exception, the feedback from the audiences and Theatre staff alike that the band is just as entertaining and dynamic as it always has been and that Kenny Junior should do all in his power to keep the band going. With the help of our management and agents we are getting enquiries for next year so keep an eye on our Dates page here which will be updated regularly. There will be a special section dedicated to Kenny Ball's memory with Photo's from the past and if you'd like to add something positive and printable you can do so by emailing me to my contact address in the Contact Us section on the website........  Syd Appleton (Tour and Website Manager)