Since the demise of RTE Lyric’s Jazz Alley, which broadcast every week from the first weekend of the station’s existence until it was axed at the end of 2015, there has been no regular national programme devoted to jazz. The Hot Box aims to fill that gap with former Jazz Alley presenter Donald Helme.
The Hot Box sets the best of Irish recorded jazz in the wider context of the universal language that is jazz worldwide. It tries to emphasise accessability and sheer enjoyment, and is building an audience well beyond the shores of its home country.
To greet 2017 The Hot Box embarks on a series that features jazz pianists across all styles, countries of origin and eras, spanning most of the hundred years of recorded jazz, and starting with the letter "A", working over time - a long time! - to “Z". The Piano Series will run for once each month.
“A" takes us back to the boogie-woogie of Albert Ammons, to the unique style of the recently departed Mose Allison, up to the present day Lynne Arriale, Monty Alexander and more. Enjoy the letter "A", and keep a look out for the letter B in February.
Two extracts from Jim Doherty’s infamous “Spondance” form the centrepiece of the sixth Hot Box. And then its big orchestras all the way. Lincoln Centre Orchestra’s Vitoria Suite, an extract from Maria Schneider’s Grammy winning The Thompson Fields, and the some lively contributions from the Spanners Big Band in London.
The fifth Hot Box includes the charming album MIQ plays MJQ, highlighting an Irish quartet that included Tony Micelo on vibes. Also check out the debut album by progressive group CEO Experiment, underlining the lively international jazz scene in Ireland. Also featured are tracks by recent visitors to Ireland, Wayne Shorter, Charles Lloyd and the Hot Club of Cowtown.
Jazz Ireland releases the fourth edition of The Hot Box, hosted by veteran jazz presenter Donald Helme. The show includes new releases from Resonance Records, previously unreleased gems by Bill Evans, Stan Getz and the Thad Jones/Mel Lewis Jazz Orchestra. All pristine and excellent recordings. The Bill Evans double album was recorded in Germany just days after the trio recorded their “Live at Montreux” album. The show also includes vocal jazz from Emilie Conway, Carmel McCreagh and Renée Marie.
The Hot Box 003 is a guitar parade, put together in honour of JJ Smyth’s jazz venue, and their legendary “Guitar Nights” which are now looking like things of the past following the sale of the pub this autumn. The Hot Box honours some of the finest Irish guitarists, including Tommy Halferty, Mike Nielsen and Hugh Buckley. You’ll also hear tracks from Jon Scofield’s new album “Country for Old Men”, from Frank Vignola and Bill Frisell among others.
In the second issue we wanted to pay personal tribute to the great Irish musician Louis Stewart who died recently. I feel that whilst musicians around the world recognised Louis’ brilliance, the listening public in Ireland never really appreciated the talent in their midst, excepting a few dedicated guitar fans. The 90 minute show gives us a musical insight and included rare material with the Tubby Hayes band as well as an extraordinary recording with the late drummer John Wadham.
Welcome to the very first issue of The Hot box. In this issue you will hear the young Cleveland-based trumpeter Dominick Farrinacci, tracks from Irish drummer Kevin Brady and his trio, Irish singer Stella Bass, and the new American piano virtuoso Sullivan Fortner amongst many others. Show lasts one hour.