"as original as they come, listening to everyone but beholden to no single influence; Eales demands your attention with the force of his musical personality and keeps it with his musicianship" - Budd Kopman (Cadence USA)
A NOTE FROM GEOFF
Hi everyone and thanks for dropping by.
I have some very sad news. Shirley, my partner for over 45 years, passed away at Rosetrees Care Home on March 18th. This has been devastating for me but I am also comforted in the knowledge that she is no longer suffering and is finally at peace. It is important that my grieving doesn't overwhelm me and that my journey in music continues unabated. My music has been so cathartic since Shirley's passing and I'm sure that she wouldn't have wanted me to give it up now. I still feel I have a lot more lot to say musically and know there are many more mountains to climb before I depart myself. However, hopefully that will not be for quite some time yet.
By accident (or maybe it was by design?) I met the wonderful vocal improviser/performer Maggie Nicols a few months ago at Café Oto. I have heard a lot about Maggie down the years and finally our paths have met. We hit it off immediately and since then we have had the opportunity to work together on several occasions. The first time was at the 1901 Arts Club in early March when she joined me along with Matt Ridley, Sophie Alloway, Mandy Dunstall, Brenda Ford, Andy Findon, Paul Jolly and Ray Roughler Jones in my 72nd Birthday Celebrations in a concert entitled "Songs of Sadness, Innocence and Joy". She repaid the compliment at the end of April when she invited me to join her in a concert at the Cellar Bar in Cardigan where we had a ball. Then in the middle of May she was my guest in "Cornucopia", an evening of Jazz, Blues, Beat Poetry and Dance at the Playground Theatre in Latimer Road curated by myself and Ray Roughler Jones. On July 11th she will be my guest in my trio concert at the Cawdor Hotel in Llandeilo as part of the Llandeilo Festival of Music.
I had a terrific time in St. Christopher's Church Haslemere in Mid-May performing my "Giants of Jazz" concert as part of the Haslemere Festival. It was pure joy to play on such a wonderful Steinway and the acoustics were amazing.
On June 18th I will be joining the Leighton Jones Band at the Tramshed in Cardiff where we will be supporting the London Community Gospel Choir and at lunchtime on June 25th I return to Ronnie Scott's with Jenny Howe and the trio (Gavin Scott - bass, Sophie Alloway - drums) in "The Ladies and Gentlemen of Jazz".
Following the highly successful Welsh premiere of my musical "Spirit of the Mine" in Cardiff last October I am now actively looking to secure sponsorship to enable me to take the project forward. Hopefully a tour of Wales in the not-too-distant future might be possible. Here is a show-reel for your perusal.
Finally, I am delighted with the response from the critics for my latest album "Love Sacred and Profane". Jazzwise gave it 4 Stars and Editor's choice and BBC Magazine gave it 5 Stars. In a recent review Nick Lea of Jazz Views said "This is a superb offering from Geoff Eales, and just leaves us wondering what we can expect next".
Meanwhile, have a great Summer and I hope to see you on one of my gigs in the next few months.
Geoff (May 26th, 2023)