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Darius Brubeck Quartet


“How often do you come away from a jazz concert wishing it could have been bottled and later poured out to relive the magic again?”

Stuart Nicolson, Jazzwise

“The Darius Brubeck Quartet paid homage to the family business while at the same time demonstrating qualities and inspirations unique to themselves.” London Jazz News 

The Darius Brubeck Quartet has travelled the world and released three critically acclaimed CDs, Cathy’s Summer, Years Ago, and their most recent, The Darius Brubeck Quartet: Live in Poland, recorded at the end of their historic 2018 tour. Live in Poland was given four stars in the May 2020 issue of Downbeat, five stars in the March issue of Jazzwise and praised in The Financial Times. After losing a year during the height of the pandemic, the group resumed touring with appearances all over the UK and a jazz festival in France.

Concerts are built around Darius Brubeck’s compositions, South African jazz, and some well-loved Dave Brubeck hits. The Quartet’s mutual understanding and interaction is a pleasure to see and hear and their acoustic sound is melodic, spontaneous, rhythmic and engaging.

Tim Dickeson had this to say in JAZZWISE, “Darius showed without a doubt that he is a highly accomplished pianist and composer, but Dave O’Higgins must take huge credit for his contribution (as should Ridley & Gibbens), as the combination of Brubeck and O’Higgins is certainly among the best piano/sax partnerships in the UK.” Clearly, audiences feel this is still the case.

The Darius Brubeck Quartet has performed several times for Music at Stow, and we are very excited to welcome them back to open the festival this year! Do join us for what will be a superb evening!

More About the Performers

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Darius Brubeck (PIano) Born in San Francisco, jazz pianist and composer Darius Brubeck grew up in the artistic milieu of his famous father Dave Brubeck and has enjoyed a lifetime of varied international experience as band leader, composer, teacher and broadcaster. The Brubeck family moved to Connecticut where Darius attended high school and graduated cum laude from Wesleyan University where he studied ethnomusicology and history of religion. Much later he was awarded an

M. Phil. by Nottingham University where he was a Visiting Fellow in Music. In South Africa, Darius Brubeck and Afro Cool Concept, which featured some of the country’s premier musicians, played throughout southern Africa, Europe, and the USA. Darius also led other groups – representing his university and South Africa – and gave workshops and concerts in Europe and the UK, Turkey, Peru, Thailand and the USA. Using the band name, Gathering Forces for ‘world-music’ oriented concerts, he collaborated with virtuoso bansuri player, Deepak Ram.

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Dave O'Higgins (Saxes) has been playing various instruments since childhood and is known primarily for his jazz playing on tenor and soprano saxophones, writing, arranging and band leading. He has honed his jazz chops through 17 albums as leader, years on the road and in the studio with the likes of Joe Locke, Martin Taylor, Joey Calderazzo, Ray Charles, Jim Mullen, BBC Big Band, Itchy Fingers, Ronnie Scott’s Allstars, Jimmy Smith, Frank Sinatra, Jason Rebello, Phil Dwyer, Stan Tracey, Eric Alexander, Brubecks Play Brubeck, Darius Brubeck Quartet, Kyle Eastwood Band and Jamie Cullum.

Matt Ridley (Bass) is based in London, he has performed worldwide and at many of the UK’s most prestigious venues such as the Purcell Room, Cadogan Hall, Ronnie Scott’s, King’s Place, the Barbican and the O2 Arena.
As a band leader, Matt released his debut album ‘Thymos’ on Whirlwind Recordings in 2013. Featuring the talents of
award-winning pianist John Turville, drummer George Hart and guest appearances from saxophone superstar Jason
Yarde, oud maestro Attab Haddad and percussionist Vasilis Sirikis, the album represents a substantial artistic state-
ment of both compositional and improvisational chutzpah.

Wesley Gibbens (Drums) moved to London from South Africa in 2005 and has played drums with the Darius Brubeck Quartet since its inception. Wesley’s South African roots earned him a place as drummer for UK based African musicians Netsayi, SA Gospel Singers, Lucky Ranku, Pinise Saul and Afla Sackey and he has gained an international profile in Jazz and African music through extensive touring and recording with these artists. He also tours with acclaimed British New Orleans and Blues piano player

TJ Johnson, and finds time to teach drums at the North London Music Academy!

For more information about the Darius Brubeck Quartet please visit their website

Astor Pantaleón Piazzolla (1921 –1992) was an Argentine tango composer, bandoneon player, and arranger. His works revolutionized the traditional tango into a new style termed nuevo tango, incorporating elements from jazz and classical music.

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