Jazz & Blues

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The Independent Culture
The spectacular singer Flora Purim and percussionist Airto Moreira are such faves with the jazz dance crowd that it is hard to credit that theirs is a partnership stretching back more than three decades. But, on the evidence of the latest Fourth World album Last Journey (Melt 2000), age has not wearied the pair and Ronnie Scott's, Frith Street - which welcomes them for a two-week residency beginning on Monday - will be alive to those pulsating rhythms and that startling voice.

Rather less vibrant, but just as arresting, will be tonight's performance at the South Bank's Queen Elizabeth Hall, where David S Ware (above), the darling of the avant-garde, plays in support of his Columbia debut, Go See the World. Not only is the adventurous saxophonist accompanied by regular sidemen such as pianist Matthew Shipp and bassist William Parker, but the same show features Roscoe Mitchell, the saxophonist who co-founded the inventive Art Ensemble of Chicago. Mitchell's latest recording - Nine to Get Ready (ECM) - sees him and the Note Factory engage in sustained improvising to glorious effect.

Back in the mainstream, Philip Catherine, the acclaimed Anglo-Belgian guitarist, performs at the Pizza Express Jazz Club, Dean Street from Wednesday until Saturday.

Meanwhile, the European theme continues with the Swedish Jazz Extravaganza, an event that takes in most of the capital's jazz venues over the coming week. Performers include the likes of country bluesman Eric Bibb, trumpeter Peter Asplund and the Viktoria Tolstoy Quartet.

Chelsea's 606 Club, which plays host to Asplund on Thursday and to the Jeanette Lindstrom Band tomorrow, also welcomes two of Britain's most accomplished performers during the week. The saxophonist Bobby Wellins is on stage tonight, while pianist John Critchinson is there on Monday. The latter's tribute album to Ronnie Scott Excuse Me, Do I Know You? (Jazz House) is a highly enjoyable romp.

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