Posted on 8 December 2011
Talented Leeds-based jazz group Roller Trio have clinched the 2011 Peter Whittingham Jazz Award.
The panel of leading jazz musicians and experts decided to grant the main award to Roller Trio following an exciting audition performance and the submission of a highly innovative project plan.
Chaos Collective received a Development Award and a Special Commendation was given to Ayanna Witter-Johnson.
The trio, features saxophonist James Mainwaring, guitarist Luke Wynter and drummer Luke Reddin-Williams, who are all current or previous students at Leeds College of Music. They join an impressive roll call of previous recipients including Scott Stroman, Errollyn Wallen, Dave O’Higgins, Soweto Kinch, Gwilym Simcock, 2009 Mercury Prize nominees Led Bib and 2010 MOBO award winners Empirical.
Roller Trio, who formed in 2010, describe their music as a combination of contemporary jazz and rock traditions, drawing on a wide range of influences including reggae, hip hop and Indian music. The band will use their award to collaborate with film-maker Ray Kane on an ambitious extensive video project and live tour.
On receiving the award, James said: ‘We are so pleased that the panel has chosen our project for the Whittingham Jazz Award. We look forward to the creative process of making our film and sharing it with the world. This is an unbelievable opportunity and without the help of the Musicians Benevolent Fund it would never have been possible.’
The panel, which included renowned jazz musicians Abram Wilson and Jason Yarde and distinguished jazz promoter Steve Rubie from London’s 606 Club, also decided to give a Development Award to Chaos Collective and a Special Commendation to vocalist, cellist and pianist Ayanna Witter-Johnson.