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BERLIN – Philarmonie “Jazz Festival Berlin’86”

31st October 1986

The main focus of the Jazz Fest, from my own point of view, were the orchestras or large groups, as there are no less than six of these configurations. From the opening night which featured two European orchestras, the Willem Breuker Kollective and the Globe Unity Orchestra, on to the WDR Big Band, Charlie Watts Orchestra, Lester Bowie’s Brass Fantasy and Loose Tubes, one is given the opportunity to sample the success and the pitfalls of so many musicians performing together. The most interesting, perhaps because of their professional experience and longevity, were the Kollective, Globe Unity and Brass Fantasy and the curiosity of Charlie Watts all-star congregation featuring a large selection of Britain’s most interesting players.

Orchestra Personel:
Charlie Watts, John Stevens and Bill Eyden (drums)/ Jack Bruce (cello)/ Stan Tracey (piano)/ Jim Lawless and Bill LeSage (vibraphone) Dave Green and Ron Mathewson (bass)/ Colin Smith, John Huckridge, Steve Sidwell, Harry Beckett, Ted Emmett, Jimmy Deuchar and Dave Defries (trumpets)/ Paul Rutherford, Annie Whitehead, Chris Pyne and John Picard (trombone)/ Don Weller, Evan Parker, Alan Skidmore, Bobby Wellins, Danny Moss and Courtney Pine (tenor saxophone)/ Peter King, Ray Warleigh and Willie Garnett (alto saxophone)/ Gail Thompson (baritone saxophone)/Olaf Vas (clarinet, flute)/ Alan Cohen (arranger, conductor)


he concert was recorded and filmed by German TV and radio and broadcast on SFB1 and RIAS in early 1987 and telecast on Nord 3 in April

Stompin’ At The Savoy • Robbin’s Nest
Lover Man • See You C.B. • Jumpin’ With Symphony Sid • Midnight Sun • Lester Leaps In • Flying Home

Photographs by Bill Smith
The Charlie Watts Orchestra, Evan Parker, John Stevens, Gail Thompson
A click and a click makes the photographs larger


End Notes:
Charlie Watts 2 June 1941 – 24 August 2021

The concert can be heard at:

Comments can be sent to classicimprov@yahoo.ca