Arts and Entertainment

Bentley's Oyster Bar & Grill, London

Interview: Robert Wyatt The only way is up when you've hit rock bottom

Robert Wyatt has `had a bad Nineties' but has emerged from his depression with an exquisite new album. He talks to Phil Johnson about nostalgia, coping with disability and why he'll die with `Marxist-Leninist' inscribed on his heart.

Dear departed, thanks for the great party

Funerals are glum, but memorial services have become seriously chic.

`I could stand up in a Wonderbra and push along those lines, but that's not why I'm doing this'

Holly Slater is a saxophonist. Yes, a female saxophonist. But no way is she going to market herself like Barbie.

POP: Party spirit

Karl Wallinger of World Party (the one in the glasses) hits 40 soon, but the group's new album indicates that the songwriter is far from ready for a bus pass.

Jazz: Caresser of the Welsh dresser

The appeal of Barbara Dennerlein, who headlined at Ronnie Scott's all last week, is at least partly that of Beauty and the Beast. Wan, willowy and ever so demure, she's clearly Beauty, while the Beast is the cut- down Welsh dresser of her Hammond organ. With a princess's hair streaming behind her, Dennerlein coaxes growls, squeaks and outright moans from the mahogany monster while somehow managing to keep an impeccable poker- face throughout. It's like Leda and the Swan, only with foot-pedals.

Obituary: Jock Bain

Trombone players tend to like each other more than other instrumentalists do. They watch out for each other's interests as though they were blood relatives and even the distinction between jazz and non-jazz players becomes blurred. Jock Bain was unusual at being good at both kinds of playing. It is not going too far to suggest that he was a British Tommy Dorsey. But unlike Dorsey, Bain was a good jazz improviser (Dorsey liked to be able to polish his "improvised" solos in advance).

Lady sings the blues as loyal fans remember Ronnie Scott

John Walsh finds Paradise at St Martin-in-the-Fields

Education: Passed/Failed: Benny Green

Benny Green, 69, is an author, jazz musician and broadcaster. He presents 'The Art of the Songwriter' on Radio 2 and is writing a book of Ronnie Scott memoirs.

Lewis Taylor at Ronnie Scott's

Pop Music

Scott overdose was not suicide

Ronnie Scott, owner of the legendary jazz club, died after taking an "incautious overdose" of barbiturates, a coroner ruled yesterday. Dr Paul Knapman recorded a verdict of misadventure on Mr Scott, who died at the age of 69 two days before Christmas.

Mr Pizza and all that jazz; Profile: Peter Boizot

Peterborough FC's new owner puts pleasure before profit, says Chris Blackhurst

Ronnie's gigs with the Cricklewood Casuals

From Sir Arthur Scrapie DSO

Live review: Andy Sheppard The Albert Inn, Bristol

Perhaps because a piano was too large to fit comfortably into the confines of a lager ad, saxophonists were the principal beneficiaries of the Eighties jazz revival. Sheppard, like Courtney Pine, Steve Williamson and Tommy Smith, was one of the few to emerge from the Zeitgeist with both a hot reputation and a record contract. Entering a national competition (sponsored by Schlitz) whose final was televised, Sheppard came in second but impressed sufficiently to get a deal with Island and a kick-start to a career that has taken him into most of the available niches ever since: guest star with big American name (Carla Bley); classical crossover (with John Harle); free improvisation (with fellow Bristolian Keith Tippett); support to pop act (John Martyn); and British Council tours to far-flung outposts (Mongolia). If, as a consequence, Sheppard has sometimes seemed as if he was keeping unlikely company, he has nevertheless continued heroically to demonstrate his prodigious talent even when the context looked like defeating him.

To bop or not to bop

It may not be in an idiom Ronnie Scott would recognise, but the future of British jazz has never sounded better.

Letter: Build on legacy of Ronnie Scott

Sir: Much has been discussed about Ronnie Scott being a depressive and of his possible suicide, as though these are the inevitable corollaries of creative genius ("Jazzmen sound blue note at Scott's farewell", 8 January).
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