Emma Johnson Gravy Boat: Northern Flame

Sat, 11 November 2023

6.30pm – 7:45pm

Hull Truck Theatre, 50 Ferensway, Hull, HU2 8LB

Tickets £10 (students and under26s £6)

Tickets available from the Hull Truck Theatre Box Office online, in person or by calling 01482 323638.

75 minute performance with no interval

Hull Truck Theatre is wheelchair accessible. Wheelchair spaces and companion spaces can be booked via the box office.

Emma Johnson’s Gravy Boat return to Hull for this year’s Jazz Celebration, sharing the release of their second album Northern Flame – a collection of new music inspired by stories of the resilience and strength of Northern women past and present.

Developed from a commission for Lancaster Jazz Festival, which premiered in 2022 with support from PRS Foundation, this new work ties together tales from the history of Lancashire, with wider themes of quiet strength and the feeling of home.

As a bandleader, Emma draws together her range of artistic passions into her project Emma Johnson’s Gravy Boat, to create a rich, cinematic sound hailed as ‘one of the most refreshingly imaginative and perfectly configured acts in contemporary Jazz’ by Neil March (Trust the Doc).

Regarding her playing, a recent review in Bebop Spoken here noted: ‘Johnson gets a great sound on tenor and has a technique to match. Not one of those in-your-face players but someone whose solos build gradually and logically, with a natural lyricism reminiscent of Coltrane.’

The group won the Peter Whittingham Award to record their debut album, Worry Not, which was released to great acclaim in 2021 and described as ‘an exciting prospect indeed’ by Jazzwise Magazine. Following a national tour, welcoming audiences returning to live music with stories, warmth and melodic, spacious compositions that allow each band member to shine, they now return with their second offering and invite you to join them to celebrate the launch of Northern Flame.

Recorded at Giant Wafer Studio in Wales and produced by Ivor Novello nominated James Hamilton, the quintet explores dynamic and interplay further in this new album, which marks a more open and exploratory way of writing and recording for Johnson and Gravy Boat. The band is made up of Steve

Hanley (Family Band, Ubunye), Richard Jones (Beats and Pieces, Nishla Smith Quintet), Fergus Vickers and Angus Milne.

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