Drummer David Lyttle is helping you beat the January blues with jazz

The MOBO-nominated musician is taking his dynamic sound to Garvagh in the new year as he continues his mission to give small towns a taste of something different

Garvagh will host an evening of world-class jazz in a very special one-off event on January 18, in the beautiful upper room of Garvagh Community Building on Main Street. Jazz drummer David Lyttle, described this year by the Independent as 'the best in jazz coming out of Ireland today', will be performing alongside two rising stars from Northern Ireland, guitarist Joseph Leighton and Jack Kelly on double bass. The event, at 7.30pm on Friday January 18, is part of a tour to rural communities and unusual venues around Ireland, and is presented in association with Live Music Now, with support from the Arts Council of Northern Ireland.

Lyttle is on a mission to bring jazz to people and places who don’t usually get the chance to hear great music and has brought this tour to the likes of Rathlin Island, Inisbofin and Tory. The tour is inspired by his experience in the USA last year, when he travelled from L.A. to New York in a Cadillac DeVille, performing for unusual audiences from cowboys to UFO tourists in a month-long tour.

'My tours have always stopped in places that surprise people but often those places are the most positive experiences,' he said. 'In my 15 years as a jazz musician I'd become so used to hearing people say that jazz was too intellectual or highbrow for the average person to appreciate and I never really believed that. In America we played for a lot of people who were hearing this kind of music for the first time and we didn't have any bad experiences, so I think I proved that that notion wasn't really true and in the process introduced a lot of people to jazz.'

 On the January 18 in Garvagh, the audience will be treated to Lyttle’s informal and down to earth introductions to each piece of music, ranging from jazz classics such as The Way You Look Tonight to new compositions. The evening will also include refreshments.

Clare from Garvagh Community Development said: ‘We’re delighted to host what we believe is Garvagh’s first ever jazz gig and are so pleased that Live Music Now and David Lyttle have chosen to come to Garvagh Community Building. Our beautiful upper room has a wonderful acoustic and is the perfect setting for this event. And because the event is subsidised tickets are just £5 – unbelievable value – it even includes light refreshment at the interval. January is such a grey, dreary month, and this is a real highlight to look forward to. We think tickets would make for great stocking fillers, so why not pop in or phone to pick up a few as Christmas gifts for your loved ones?’ 

As one of the island's most forward-thinking and celebrated instrumentalists, David has performed in over twenty five countries and collaborated with jazz icons Joe Lovano and Kurt Rosenwinkel, and hip hop visionaries Talib Kweli and Soweto Kinch. He is the only Northern Irish musician to be nominated for a MOBO Award and Urban Music Awards. Recently he was the British Council’s Musician in Residence in East China, making three trips with his solo drums show.

David is also an Ambassador for the music charity Live Music Now, which nurtures exceptional young musicians to deliver music to marginalized audiences in care homes, day centres, special schools and other health and community settings.

David will be joined by the hugely promising 21-year-old Derry guitarist Joseph Leighton, who he introduced to jazz as a teenager. Joseph has since studied at the Banff Centre in Canada and Trinity Laban in London, and in 2016/2017 was one of Moving On Music's Emerging Artists, which allowed him to study with leading European jazz guitarist Jesse van Ruller in Amsterdam. He will also be joined by 20 year old Jack Kelly, also an Emerging Artist on Moving on Music’s scheme, as well as a musician on the Live Music Now scheme.

 Tickets for the event, which include refreshments, are just £5 and can be bought in advance from Garvagh Community Building by phoning 028 2955 7325 or emailing administrator@gadda.co.uk.