The Archive.

Updated Dec 2011 .

The Third
National Jazz and Blues Festival.

Richmond Athletic Grounds
Richmond. Surrey. UK.
August 10-11th 1963.


 Amazingly the musicians beat the forces marshalled against them at the open air National jazz festival at Richmond during the weekend and played some fine jazz.

  On Saturday night the enemy included off key jets landing at London airport a minor zephyr and a chattering microphone.

  They were conspicuously reinforced by six frenetic african drummers. these gentlemen took the stage complete with an action painter and a belly dancer , whose gyrations would not have raised the temperature of any potentate east of Leyton Orient.

  The show, sponsored by the Evening News and Star was particularly a victory for the bands of humphrey Lyttleton and Alex Welsh and Pianist Dill Jones.

  Lyttletons music occurs in grand economy mode. Every unnecessary note is pruned ., The skeletal arrangements give plenty of chance for invention.

  As a result the six piece group generated more power than all the electronic weapons wielded by the succession fo rhythm and blues bands which entertained the dark glasses and black jacket set in a nearby marquee throughout the evening .

  Power is also an essential part of the music of Dill Jones , who recently migrated to New York and is now on holiday here. But there has always a strong melodic link between his ringing hammer hit phrases and great rolling chords.

  He finished with a finger busting Little Rock Getaway containing a stride chorus that would have done justice to the late Fats Waller.The night was blown out by the chris Barber band with Ottilie Paterson . The performance was slick by any show business standards . But underneath it all was an air of staleness. True invention and the Barber band are apparently only remote acquaintances .

  The winners of the amateur contest held yesterday were Modern Jazz , Minot Jaynes sextet , Mainstream, Colin Kingswell's Jazz Bandits. They will fly to Zurich next month to compete in an international contest



Dancers twist the night away at the Preview session

The alternative set were also in attendance

The canvas backed seats, very much a feature of the festival until more or less the end of the decade.


Article courtesy of John Clark


Festivals 61-64

Lineups of each year, plus the program and photos from 1963-64

Festivals 65-75

Most of these have fairly complete documentation .
Richmond 1965
Windsor 1966
 Windsor 1967
Sunbury 1968
Plumpton 1969
Plumpton 1970
Reading 1971
Reading 1972
Reading 1973
Reading 1974

  Reading 1975.

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