Drummer Mark takes centre stage with his jazz quintet in Bedford

Mark Hale
Mark Hale

The man behind Bedford’s weekly jazz night will perform for the first time with his own quintet at the White Horse on Monday February 12.

Mark Hale is a Bedford-born drummer now living in north east London.

He studied at The Academy of Contemporary Music in Guildford, Surrey and since graduating in 2011 has performed around the world on cruise ships and more recently freelancing around the UK working with different band leaders, most notably tenor saxophonist Simon Spillett performing at venues including Ronnie Scott’s, The Hideaway and The Stables.

Since October 2014, Mark has been the organiser of Monday Night Jazz in Bedford which hosts a selection the finest jazz musicians in the UK each week.

It was at college when Mark was really introduced to the world of jazz drumming through his teacher Graham Fox and since then it has been a major focus of his study, learning the tradition of jazz through listening to his favourite master drummers such as Roy Haynes, Arthur Taylor and Billy Higgins.

Mark’s quintet has been assembled to pay homage to the great band leaders and composers of the ‘50s and ‘60s, including Horace Silver, Lee Morgan and Dexter Gordon. The group comprises trumpeter James Copus, saxophonist Riley Stone, pianist Chris Eldred and double bassist Tom Riviere.

The music starts at 8.30pm, with suggested contributions of £5 per listener to pay the musicians.