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New Perspectives

New PerspectivesAn Arts Council initiative, John’s innovative combination of jazz septet and classical wind quintet (the esteemed English Serenata) broke new ground and was the subject of a BBC Radio 4’s ‘Kaleidoscope’ programme when New Perspectives premiered Neil Ardley’s ‘On the Four Winds’ 

The combination of spontaneity and rhythmic inventiveness of jazz with the wide textural and dynamic possibilities of the wind quintet proved to be a dazzling musical experience.  The innovative instrumentation results in a rich, warm sonority which is unique in the jazz field.

The band recorded ‘Five Housman Settings and Other Jazz Works’ which was premiered at the Ludlow Festival to celebrate the centenary of the publication of A.E.Housman’s ‘A Shropshire Lad’.  This featured  Jacqui Dankworth singing 5 specially commissioned settings of his poems.

This C.D, was selected by the Sunday Times as ‘the outstanding British jazz release of 1996’.

“..the poised collection of settings by John Williams’ hybrid ensemble proves a heartening triumph.  The blend of woodwind and brass casts fresh light on Duke Ellington’s ‘Reflections in D’ and Gil Evans’s adaptation of ‘The Maids of Cadiz’       Clive Davis (Sunday Times)

Click on a Sax to hear .mp3 Hear extracts from the New Perspectives’ C.D. ‘Five Houseman Settings and Other Jazz Works  (Spotlite Records  SPJ CD 559) (if you can't play the extracts you may need to download the latest version of Windows Media Player from

Reflections in D
‘Reflections in D’ (Duke Ellington)
When Summer's End Nighing
‘When Summer’s End Nighing’  (John Williams)
On Green Dolphin Street  ’On Green Dolphin Street’ (Washington/Kaper)
                               *(Live recording  at the Thaxted Festival)

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