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SANCHA AND THE BLUE GYPSIES

Sancha

On Thursday 21st February the Down South Jazz Club has pleasure in bringing once again the sweet swinging outfit “Sancha and the Blue Gypsies” to the stage of Club Sapphire. With a lifetime of performance experience between them, they are a dynamic acoustic quartet from Sydney featuring a glorious mix of gypsy jazz, folk, bluegrass and gospel The line up features Sancha Prowse (vocals, mandolin), Marcus Holden (violin, mandolin, guitar, vocals), Garry Steel (accordion) and Stan Valacos (double bass, guitar). ​We first heard this creative four-some in November 2017.  Since then they have gone from strength to strength and are winning over audiences far and wide with their energetic and engaging stage presence and banter.  Performing at live venues around the country including folk and jazz festivals, Sancha & the Blue Gypsies are swinging their way into peoples hearts. We look forward very much to the opportunity to see and hear them once again. 

Sancha Prowse, lead singer of the Blue Gypsies, is also a highly sought after singing teacher/vocal coach and visual artist. Her artwork features on the cover of their CD. She has lived in Nashville, toured the USA extensively, sung on cruise ships, performed on live TV, recorded jingles for radio ads and backed vocal recording sessions for countless artists. In her spare time she practices the mandolin and runs half marathons for fun

Bassist Stan Valacos has played regularly with different groups led by Geoff Bull, along with the Paul Furniss trio and other combinations. He is in high demand by most leading musicians on the Sydney jazz scene. At the Southern Highlands Classic Jazz and Ragtime Festival he played with three top musicians - Geoff Bull, Paul Furniss and Anthony Howe. Stan also plays 7-string guitar in a Brazilian Band called “Performing Brazil”. He has played at the Ascona Jazz Festival in USA and also joined the Society Syncopators for several gigs in Europe prior to appearing for the Down South Jazz Club in July 2008 with the Geoff Bull Jazz Band. We have had the pleasure of listening to him several times over the last few years when he has performed with George Washingmachine, Jug-a-lug Stringband and John Morrison’s All Stars.

Marcus Holden is a multi instrumentalist playing fiddle, mandolin, cello, guitar and keyboard He  has been playing music since he was eight years old. Music keeps him young and happy, creative and expressive.. He teaches at the Australian Institute of Music. Apart from playing anything from gypsy, folk, country, jazz to classical and string arranging from quartet to full orchestra, he has worked in collaboration with some of Australia's greats and has performed as a soloist with many major orchestras in Australia. He also runs his own recording studio, runs his dogs to keep fit and somehow finds time to write music for orchestra and small ensembles.  Along with Stan, he also played with the Jug-a-lug Stringband back in 2016 and again last year.

Garry Steel is an accordion virtuoso and pianist and has been playing since he was 10 years old. He and musician brother Kirk grew up in Kalgoorlie where their dad was a mining engineer.. His colourful playing of the upright piano inject a sound that helps recreate the music of the goldfield hotels. With countless recording and performance credits, Garry, a founding member of FF (Fiddlers Feast), is one of this country’s most sought after musicians bringing his individual style and sound to everything musical he touches. He has graced thousands of country and rock recordings, played with a long list of bands and stars and builds carbon-fibre boats in his spare time..

Try not to miss this outstanding night of exceptional jazz. Cost is $15 for jazz club members and $20 for visitors with music commencing at 7.30 pm.  Bookings can be made with Aileen/Kevin Walsh (64959853), at bookings@downsouthjazzclub.org.au, or will be available on the night at the door. The Club Sapphire bistro opens at 6.00 pm with its extensive menu; meals can either be eaten in the bistro, or ordered, collected and eaten at leisure while listening to the music.