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Live Review: Cheltenham Jazz Festival

Cracking Band

by Brian Payne | Jazz Journal | May 11, 2023

In mixed weather, this year’s Cheltenham Jazz Festival spanned six days from 26 April to 1 May. Most performances took place in Montpellier Gardens, the site of the Big Top and Jazz Arena. Other locations in town included the Parabola Arts Centre, Cheltenham Town Hall and the Daffodil Restaurant. The Daffodil is a restored 1920s cinema with a balcony, sweeping staircase and superb art-deco features.

I hadn’t come across Damian Lewis before. He’s a television and film actor by day yet here he was at Cheltenham fronting a cracking band. I was pleasantly surprised. Lewis sang and played a mix of roots, blues and rock ’n’ roll and his vocals and guitar accompaniment were spot on. Some of the numbers were his own compositions. He was backed by members of Kansas Smitty’s House Band with Giacomo Smith on alto saxophone, David Archer on guitar, Joe Webb on piano, Will Sach on bass and Will Cleasby on drums. Kitty Durham supplied backing vocals, hand-held percussion, harmonica and at times also guitar.

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Categories Album Mission Creep Music Print Media Review

Cheltenham Jazz Festival: Damian Lewis – Live Review

Well Crafted Songs and Strong Vocals

by Hannah Compton | Building Our Own Nashville | May 1, 2023

Actor Damian Lewis has always had a passion for playing music and putting out a record of his own. Signed to Decca Records, Damian released his first single ‘Down on the Bowery’ on April 13th 2023.

His debut album Mission Creep is out June 16th and can be pre ordered here.

Playing in the Jazz Arena at Cheltenham Jazz Festival with a seven piece band that consisted of the Kansas Smitty Band, the show was an absolute sell out full of keen fans of the actor who were curious to be a part of one of his first ever live performances promoting his forthcoming debut album.

“Hello Everyone”, Lewis greeted “I am a Cheltenham Jazz Festival virgin only to be deflowered by this audience and I am glad it’s you”.

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Damian Lewis Performed at This Year’s Cheltenham Jazz Festival

David Bowie Vibes

by Gingernsap | | May 1, 2023

Damian performed a live gig at
Cheltenham Jazz Festival at Montpellier Gardens in the Jazz Arena on Monday, May 1, 2023 from 2:30-4:00 p.m. He and his band sounded incredible and audience members commented about Damian’s Bowie-esque look and vibe. Damian performed songs from his upcoming debut album out June 16, as well as covers like ‘Werewolves of London.’ View more images in our Gallery here. Next gig is Union Chapel! Watch brief interview from Cheltenham Jazz Festival with Tony Minvielle of Jazz FM here:

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Damian Lewis Scheduled to Perform at Cheltenham Jazz Festival

With Jazz Outfit Kansas Smitty’s

by Connie Evans | The Independent | February 7, 2023

Damian Lewis is set to team up with jazz outfit Kansas Smitty’s to perform at Cheltenham Jazz Festival at Montpellier Gardens.

The 51-year-old British actor, best known for starring in TV dramas including Band Of Brothers and Homeland, is expected to play tracks from his debut album, which is set to be released in June of this year.

Lewis, who last year played an intimate London show and appeared at the Wilderness Festival in Oxfordshire, will be accompanied on stage by the jazz group, which is headed up by Italian-American musician Giacomo Smith.

Having played the guitar since the age of 13, Lewis rediscovered the instrument during lockdown and later teamed up with various London-based musicians, including Smith, who plays both clarinet and alto saxophone, to record his debut album.

Lewis will join the seven-piece outfit, who have previously sold out Ronnie Scott’s and The Jazz Cafe. Tickets for Cheltenham Jazz Festival, which takes place beginning Wednesday, April 26 through Monday, May 1, 2023, will go on sale on March 1 here. Damian will play the Jazz Arena on Monday, May 1, 2023 from 2:30-4:00 p.m. and tickets start at £30. His event number is J22. Don’t miss Kansas Smitty’s late-night takeover sessions in Cheltenham’s bar and event space The Daffodil Restaurant on Friday, Saturday and Sunday (April 28 – April 30) at 11:00 p.m. each night.

Read the rest of the original article at The Independent
Secondary Source: Evening Standard