Friends charity party in memory of ‘Jazz Man’ Keith Crombie

[Published on Chronicle Live]

Jazz “refugees” are heading to the Newcastle Arts Centre to party in the spirit of a lost friend.

The city’s much-loved Jazz Cafe closed its doors after the death of founder and owner Keith Crombie just after Christmas.

Regulars set up the Pink Lane Jazz Co-op in the hope they could one day reopen the musician’s haunt.

And on April 13, the Jazz Cafe Big Bash will bring the atmosphere of the cafe to the Newcastle Arts Centre’s Black Swan pub on Westgate Road.

The programme features some of the region’s finest jazz musicians, as well as poetry and dance.

It includes a rare pairing of blues singer Mo Scott and jazz pianist Paul Edis, the award-winning afro-funk band Hannabiell and Midnight Blue, and the  Strictly Smokin’ Big Band. Local poets Jenni Pascoe, Steve Urwin and Scott Tyrell and DJ Serena Cee from Swing Tyne are also performing.

As well as showcasing some great music and poetry, the Jazz Cafe Big Bash is intended to raise the profile of Pink Lane Jazz Co-op. People will have the opportunity to find out more about the co-op and will be welcome to become members, volunteers and/or donors.

One of the co-op founders,  Dave Parker, said: “We know that the Jazz Cafe will never be the same without Keith but we hope that the co-op can continue some of the things he established there, particularly the performance of live jazz in relaxed surroundings and the encouragement of creative talent.  We want people to join the co-op and help to make this happen.”

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