New jazz music: introducing Deschanel Gordon on keys

We can’t quite believe we’re at the end of our season of Late Night Jazz showcases at h Club London, showcasing the rising stars of the London music scene. But we’re super excited to be welcoming uber talented jazz pianist Deschanel Gordon for our latest gig. A member of SEED Ensemble and a regular with Mark Kavuma’s band, I found out a little bit more about him…

Jennie: Hey Deschanel! Tell us how you started out in music and chose to play jazz piano?

Deschanel: From a young age I was always exposed to music, ranging from gospel to reggae. I started off with classical piano lessons but was losing interest. At age 10 I saw a video of Oscar Peterson playing which sparked my love for jazz music and from there I attended jazz piano lessons.

Jennie: So glad you kept playing! You’re currently studying at Trinity Laban and also playing at some legendary venues like Ronnie’s and the Jazz Cafe. How do you manage to combine the two and what do you enjoy about both?

Deschanel: The last year I have had the opportunity to play with lots of amazing musicians that really inspire and push me. Some of these musicians I have met through being at Trinity Laban and elsewhere. Everytime I perform I feel like I learn something new about myself. Being at music college means that I can be taught by experienced teachers who give me various ways of approaching how to play the piano. The lessons I learn from them can be applied in real time when I am performing. 

Jennie: We can’t wait until your h Club London gig on 24th April! What treats do you have planned for us that night?  

Deschanel: I am really looking forward to the chance to debut some new music I have been writing. I am excited to hear how Seth Tackaberry (bass) and Zoe Pascal (drums) will interpret it. I also will play some of my own arrangements of a few jazz standards. 

Jennie: Sounds awesome! And what’s coming up for you through the rest of 2019?

Deschanel: I am playing at the Love Supreme jazz festival this year with SEED Ensemble and Mark Kavuma. I am also looking forward to playing abroad in countries like Switzerland and the Netherlands.

Jennie: Finally, when you have time to relax what are your top three tunes to listen to and why?

It’s hard to narrow it down to three! But I would definitely include Dexter Gordon’s version of Where Are You from his album Go. His sound on the tenor saxophone is very resonant and I like his laid back style. The other two would be Herbie Hancock’s tune Driftin’ for his swinging way of using the blues and Robert Glasper’s tune F.T.B for his unique way of melding harmony, melody and groove.

Jennie: Cool, going to be listening to those! Thanks Deschanel.

To catch Deschanel Gordon at our h Club London showcase at 7.30pm on 24th April 2019, join us as an Abram Wilson Foundation Trailblazer (aka regular supporter)