“…a welcome slap in the face. Their punchy grooves and anthemic melodies are just what you need after a night on a camping mat…” Thomas Rees, The Arts Desk (July 2016)
“…thrilling big band Beats & Pieces … opened with [a] floorshaking fanfare of free-sax wails and huffing trombones … The whole set was typical of [Ben Cottrell’s] erudition and vision, and the band’s unfailing verve – 4 stars” John Fordham, The Guardian (June 2016)
“Fast becoming one of the foundations of the current UK jazz scene, Beats & Pieces make fun, grooving, high-impact music Mancunian style… continuing the great tradition of UK big bands”
Jez Nelson, BBC Jazz on 3 (September 2015)
“A big band for modern times”
Sold-out « All In » album launch at Ronnie Scott’s; London in July 2015, filmed with 15 headmounted GoPro cameras
How big is it?
14 musicians who met as students in Manchester. 9 years on from their first gig they are 1 tightknit bunch that knows each other inside out musically and socially. Performing original music that reflects the huge diversity of music that people of their millennial generation have grown up surrounded by – expect to hear the influence of Michael Jackson, Björk and Radiohead or The Beatles, Beach Boys and Bowie as much as you’ll hear Gil Evans, Kenny Wheeler or Loose Tubes. Released 2 albums on bandleader Ben Cottrell’s own label Efpi Records: Big Ideas in 2012 and All In in 2015. Their 3rd album will be released in January 2018. Winners of numerous awards at home and abroad. A long list of radio play, press coverage and major festival appearances. Multiple successful tours across the UK and Europe.
Not your average big band, but a band that is big – the most original and vibrant ensemble of its type.
Ensemble of the Year – UK Parliamentary Jazz Awards 2014
Best UK Newcomer – Jazz FM Awards 2013
Young European Artists’ Jazz Award – Burghausen International Jazz Festival 2011
Beats & Pieces director Ben Cottrell is the recipient of the Irwin Mitchell mjf originals commission 2016.