Number One pianist/jazz singer Anthony Strong has just unveiled his brand new video for the title track of his new album, On a Clear Day. Strong has built a reputation for his classic British style, but his biggest achievements have come from oversea.
Often billed affectionately overseas as ‘The English Gentleman’ or ‘La Classe Britannique,’ Strong has the panache of a young Hollywood screen idol and is signed alongside stars such as Carla Bruni, Katie Melua, and Marianne Faithfull to Naïve Records, one of the most prestigious record labels in France, where his last album was announced on the front page of daily news titan Le Figaro. NPR in the USA, where his last record topped the iTunes Jazz Charts, recently invited him to Hollywood to record a 60-minute interview feature with American songbook legend Michael Feinstein. In China, where he headlined the 2014 Shanghai Jazz Week, he spent two hours after the show signing CDs under police escort and was featured on Asian MTV-style giant Channel V. ‘The German Jonathan Ross’ – Harald Schmidt – invited Strong to be a guest on his TV show and the last album was launched with a live performance on the country’s biggest breakfast TV show ZDF Morgenmagazin, again reaching #1 in the jazz charts.
Strong’s new album, On A Clear Day, took two years to bring together and is a statement of intent to continue doing what he does best. Strong explains, “In mid-2013, I started compiling a list of songs that would form the basis of my new record. I’d played a handful of big band shows over the last year, and I found myself addicted to the sound of a big horn section. I knew the sound I wanted (more energy and “POW!”) and so I started on the arrangements. A week later I’d finished all the songs.” Strong drafted in over twenty musicians – a wealth of UK-based talent – to help fulfil his vision, including Seb De Krom (Jamie Cullum), Nigel Hitchcock (Ray Charles), Gareth Lockrane (Michael Kiwanuka), and a horn section featuring some of London’s top session players.
24 May, Ronnie Scott’s, London
26 May, Blue Note, Milan
30 May, Unterfahrt, Munich
1 & 2 June, Duc Des Lombards, Paris
17 June, Rockwood Music Hall, New York
19 June, Rochester Jazz Festival, USA
22 July, Pizza Express, London
23 July, Pizza Express, London