Music / October 10, 2023

This UK Jazz Trio are bringing a Mercury Prize Nominated Saxophonist on their Tour of Ireland

Sultan Stevenson by Steve Funkeyfeet
Music / October 10, 2023

This UK Jazz Trio are bringing a Mercury Prize Nominated Saxophonist on their Tour of Ireland

Words: Dylan Murphy

Sultan Stevenson Trio hit the road in late October as part of a five date tour across the Island.

This October, one of the UK’s most exciting jazz acts, Sultan Stevenson Trio, arrive in Ireland as part of a five date tour. What’s more is, they are bringing Mercury Prize-nominated tenor saxophonist Denys Baptiste along for the ride.

Not so long ago, it’d be unsurprising to hear someone describe Jazz as ‘stuffy’ or ‘inaccessible’, but today that couldn’t be any further from the truth. With Ezra Collective winning the Mercury Prize and cross-pollination of genre being the norm, it’s not hard to see why there’s a serious appetite for Jazz music in all its forms.

With that in mind, the Trio head to The Sugar Club in Dublin (Tuesday 24 Oct), Pavilion Theatre in Dún Laoghaire (Wednesday 25 Oct), Siama Tíre in Tralee (Friday 27 October) before heading to Triskel Arts Centre (Saturday 28 October as part of Guinness Cork Jazz Festival) and Riverbank Arts Centre in Newbridge (Sunday 29 October).

You only have to look at a Hip hop icon like Madlib to see the practice of sampling jazz is still alive and well. Elsewhere, it looks like Robert Glasper is on a one man mission to tear down barriers to entry, blending elements of hip hop, jazz, rnb and everything in between to make jazz accessible (So much so that became the first artist to have an album in the top ten of four separate genre charts at once). In the UK, artists like Yussef Dayes are making jazz on their own terms and introducing it to a younger audience and in Ireland Cork’s Jazz Festival continues to showcase the island’s burgeoning talent alongside established heavy hitters.

Clearly, there’s no shortage of entry points into the genre. In the case of Sultan Stevenson, he was fortunate enough to be introduced to Jazz through his father, who presented the first jazz show on Barbados radio (Voice of Barbados Jazz Beat). He later went on to attend Julian Joseph Jazz Academy, before following his own path into writing and performing. Most recently, he released his debut album Faithful One and even performed at Love Supreme festival with the likes of Grace Jones, Little Simz and Thundercat.

Sultan Stevenson Trio’s Irish tour kicks off on Tuesday 24 October in The Sugar Club. Click here to purchase tickets.

Elsewhere on District: Robert Glasper on the many rooms of Black American music.