Seven Jazz - The Leeds Club for Quality Accessible Jazz

Brigitte Beraha – vocals, Tom Challenger – Sax,  Rob Updegraff – guitar, Dave Manington – Bass, Tim Giles – Drums

“It grooves like hell, with some thick mercurial riffs – full of stops, starts, and turns yet rocking in the grip of a savage momentum.” JAZZWISE.

Riff Raff is an innovative group featuring some of the UKs finest artists working in contemporary jazz - Brigitte Beraha (Kenny Wheeler, London Jazz Orch.), Ivo Neame (Phronesis, Marius Neset), Tomas Challenger (Foufolah/Red Snapper), Rob Updegraff (Alani, Beth Rowley/Zigaboo Modeliste) and Tim Giles (Iain Ballamy/Art Farmer). The music is sophisticated and full of virtuoso playing, sometimes freely improvised with an exciting element of risk, but the song forms, melodic nature and the empathy and great ensemble playing of the group make it highly accessible. “It also grooves like hell, with some thick mercurial riffs – full of stops, starts, and turns yet rocking in the grip of a savage momentum.” JAZZWISE. The starting point for the music is collective improvisation but compositionally it draws on as wide a range of styles as possible. Folk, electronic music and contemporary classical influences are added to the mix with complex jazz harmonies and rhythms. The most important thing for us is to develop a band sound and understanding so each time we play the music can be re-invented together, often quite radically. Several new compositions feature fantastic lyrics from Brigitte Beraha and on other tracks she sings wordless vocals, often harmonizing with the sax line to great effect. A new album "Hullabaloo" was released on Loop Records and the group will tour the UK in spring 2017.
Dave Manington’s Riff Raff is his current project. This dynamic ensemble of young musicians has developed organically over the last decade and features the highly acclaimed musicians, vocalist Brigitte Beraha (Kenny Wheeler, Henry Lowther, L.J.O.), pianist Ivo Neame (Phronesis, Marius Neset), saxophonist Tomas Challenger (Red Snapper, Fofoulah), guitarist Rob Updegraff (Eska, Ala Ni, Zigaboo Modeliste) and drummer Tim Giles (Iain Ballamy, Stan Sulzmann, Kenny Wheeler, Art Farmer).

The starting point for the music is collective improvisation but compositionally it draws on as wide a range of styles as possible. Folk, electronic music and contemporary classical influences are added to the mix with complex jazz harmonies and rhythms and the music has been developed through countless gigs and rehearsals giving Riff Raff a genuinely unified sound. The band also benefits from the fact that Dave, Rob and Tim have been playing together as a rhythm section for other 20 years since starting out in school bands together and have developed a telepathic understanding. Several of the compositions from Hullabaloo feature fantastic lyrics from Brigitte Beraha and on other tracks she sings wordless vocals, often harmonizing with the sax line to great effect.

They released their first album "Hullabaloo" on Loop Records in 2014.

"Riff Raff mix the leader's clever composing with a formidable lineup, including Ivo Neame on piano and occasional accordion, the articulate Tomas Challenger on tenor, and the excellent Tim Giles on drums. Add John Scofield-like guitarist Rob Updegraff and softly surefooted vocalist Brigitte Beraha, and the soundscape embraces a 21st century sax-led cool school sound, raw guitar-fusion, diffident Wayne Shorteresque lyricism, and vocals that showcase Beraha's eloquent lyrics and inventiveness as a wordless improviser. " John Fordham - The Guardian Feb 2013

"Inventive, forward looking jazz that subtly pushes the envelope whilst remaining thoroughly accessible to the listener. " jazzmann.com

Dave Mannington’s “Riff Raff” Sunday afternoon Jan 8 @Seven Arts 1.30pm start £10/8 (NUS £5)