Yazz Ahmed – Trumpet
Tipped as a rising star by Jazzwise and Time Out, Yazz Ahmed won great reviews for her debut at Ronnie Scott’s, leading her own quintet and in opening the Jazz In The Round series at the Cockpit Theatre with her vibraphone and bass trio.
Yazz has also performed with her quartet, featuring Lewis Wright, at the Vortex, the National Portrait Gallery, and opened the Manchester Jazz Festival in 2013.
She has played alongside Toshiko Akiyoshi, Rufus Reid, Kenny Wheeler, Steve Williamson and Sir John Dankworth. She works regularly with the London Jazz Orchestra, Jazz Jamaica and with her new septet, Ahmed Family Hafla.
In 2012, Yazz represented Bahrain in London’s Cultural Olympiad, joining renowned musicians from the Arabian Gulf in collaboration with Transglobal Underground. This project, ‘In Transit’, was supported by the British Council and has performed in Dubai and London.
During November 2012, Yazz was involved in a cultural exchange project, ‘Interplay’, working with musicians from Britain and Sweden as a composer and performer. The collaborators for ‘Interplay’ included Denys Baptiste, Samuel Hallkvist, Ira Mogilevsky and Michala Ostergaard-Nielsen.
In 2013 Yazz was selected for Take Five Edition VIII supported by Serious and the Jerwood Charitable Foundation.
Yazz has recorded and performed with, Max Romeo, Lee ‘Scratch’ Perry, the Manic Street Preachers, Swing Out Sister, Twiggy, the Urban Soul Orchestra and made her debut on the Jools Holland show this year playing along side New York artist, Joan as Police Woman.
More recently, Yazz has been touring the world with art-rock band, These New Puritans, as a soloist and member of their septet.
Yazz plays flugelhorn on Radiohead’s album The King of Limbs and The King Of Limbs, Live From The Basement, which was screened worldwide during July 2011.
Yazz’s debut album, Finding My Way Home, featuring bass virtuoso, Janek Gwizdala and clarinetist, Shabaka Hutchings, was released in August 2011. The album is a collection of original compositions and improvisations, exploring the sounds and rhythms of Yasmeen’s Arabic heritage, revisiting memories from her early childhood in Bahrain. These are contrasted with pieces reflecting the classic British jazz from the 1950s and 60s, which was the soundtrack to her teenage years and was her gateway into improvised music.
Gary Crosby OBE included Finding My Way Home in his top five releases of 2011.
She is currently working on her second album, exploring further the soundscapes she has been developing since the first. The album will feature her two bands, some duets with Lewis Wright, and a collaboration with Swedish guitarist, Samuel Hallkvist.
“Ahmed has a precise, poised but warm, atmospheric sound… she is a considerable and – most important – highly individual instrumental and compositional talent.” – Chris Parker, London Jazz Blog