Either through exceptional musical pedigrees starting at either the Royal College of Music or similar (some years ago!) or through repeated delivery of stunning performances working alongside names like Marvin Gaye… we are:
Norman Wiggins – Trumpet
With his laid back style of playing, Norman has been playing trumpet since his days as a school boy and became a professional musician shortly after leaving school. Among his many accolades he has played alongside such names as: the late great Marvin Gaye, the Pasadena Roof Orchestra, the BBC radio orchestra, Viola Wills, Eddie Grant and of course the wonderful Ian Muncey to name but a few.
Ian Muncey – Trumpet / Flugelhorn
Delivering a tone on the brass that is rarely heard nowadays – it is no surprise that he is our band logo! A discliplined approach developed a long time ago (yeh, that long!) through his old school musical director testing his breathing control by punching him in the stomach whilst delivering a long even note – no wavering allowed – he is truly breathtaking.
Terry Veasey – Alto Sax / Harmonica
An aficionado on the brass, playing alto sax for us demonstrating a passion for the beauty of the instrument – rather than crazy scale paths that are unfathomable. His is the beautiful melody or heart wrenching blues solos delivered on the harmonica which quietened many a pub in our early days.
Both Ian and Terry were recognised as musical child prodigies in their youth and the rest of us are honoured to play with two such gifted musicians.
Julia Banks – Tenor Sax
The energetic and slightly crazy tenor sax lady, this girl thinks she’s the boss, but we keep her in check and channel her adrenalin overload to creating some great tenor solos and unusual bassy riffs. Julia runs jazz workshops, a number of bands covering many genres and teaches clarinet, piano and sax.
Andy Reid – World Class Drummer
“Third in the world in the pipe drumming championships, this guy is a superbly trained animal. With a tenderness of spirit underlying the ability of a precisely trained technical skill he sings, drums. caresses and wallops his kit – whatever the tune needs, he delivers with a wink and a smile.
Alexandra Westcott – Keyboards, Piano
Since the tender age of 3, Alexandra has been dancing, & having taught herself the piano at 8 it was a natural progression to a BA in Performing Arts (Music & Dance). Her subsequent successful 25 year career as a classical pianist & teacher has inevitably led her to now excel at jazz with Freefall. Her invaluable handbook for piano teachers has been well received and reviewed and is available from Amazon.co.uk
Chris Mottram-Wooster – Bass
More well known for her regular jazz workshops in Hertfordshire, Chris provides a bass line that we can virtually lean on… if we stand just in front of her amp. Never too loud, never too strong, never over-the-top in any way, she keeps the entire band moving forwards with just the right balance of tension and release.
Freefall are one of those lucky bands who can call upon the breathy Ella Fitzgerald vocals of jazz singer Natalie Whyte, the gaelic style of Nicola McHarg, crackingly positive vocals of Kelly Prentice or Kath Hallahan’s hauntingly beautiful colour. Including backing vocals from the rest of the band vocal moments are features that add, not detract from the jazz ensemble of Freefall.