Hailed by NPR and Rolling Stone as one to watch in London’s jazz renaissance, Nubya Garcia tours Australia for the first time this June. Already announced for the Melbourne International Jazz Festival, the Castlemaine Jazz Festival is excited to announce Nubya and her band will be headlining the Festival with a special performance on Friday night 8th June starting 9pm at the Old Castlemaine Gaol's Cell Block venue. Lucky us!
A multi-talented tenor saxophonist, composer and bandleader, Garcia is carving out a reputation in the jazz scene both in her hometown of London and around the world. Part of a generation of artists inspired equally by hip hop, grime and drum & bass, Garcia earned her stripes as a DJ in London clubs and has distilled all her influences into two afro-tinged jazz records: ‘Nubya’s 5ive’ (May 2017, Jazz re:freshed) – which sold out in a day in its first pressing – and the self-released ‘When We Are’ (March 2018).
“Nubya Garcia exudes a kind of breezy, sultry, downtown cool — no surprise, given her history as a club DJ.” – NPR
“London artists like … Nubya Garcia are leading a new wave of British jazz.” – Rolling Stone
“[Her] compositions glow with Afro-futurist touches, chill Baduizm and self-assurance.” – The Guardian
“One of the leading lights in London’s contemporary jazz scene.” – The Vinyl Factory
Raised in Camden, in London’s northeast, by Caribbean parents, Garcia was a teenager playing saxophone when she got a revelatory new jazz education at Tomorrow's Warriors, a blues workshop led by the late trumpeter Abram Wilson. Being in a predominantly black group of musicians – especially one where she was not the only woman – was significant for the saxophonist who doesn’t often see women wielding woodwinds, and who is always assumed to be a singer. It was at this workshop that she found many of the collaborators she still plays with today, a decade later.
As well as her namesake project, Garcia has also lent her skills to five of the nine tracks on ‘We Out Here’, a new compilation chronicling this era of jazz in London released by Gilles Peterson's Brownswood Recordings. She is also a key collaborator in the Theon Cross Trio, six-piece Maisha and the Nérija septet.