Sarah started learning the clarinet when she was 8yrs old,quickly following this with the flute and saxophone. Sarah joined her first big band at the age of 13yrs and her first original band at 15yrs. The next few years were a series of recording sessions/ live gigs and recording contracts, filled with fun and promises. In 2001 Sarah decided to go back to studying and graduated from Southampton University with a BA Mus, specialising in Jazz alto saxophone and classical soprano saxophone. During this period Sarah also formed her band Not Just Sax.
Sarah’s own band ‘ Not Just Sax’, has gone from strength to strength and features Ray Shea on piano, Pete Maxfield on double bass and Johnny Eyden on drums. All of the musicians have years of experience in the jazz field, including Pete touring with Andy Sheppard for 15yrs, Ray at Ronnie Scotts and on a support tour with Tubby Hayes and John being featured on radio 2 every day for two years with organist Harry Stoneham. ‘Not Just Sax’ have performed all over the south of England including ‘Stompin On The Quomps’ in Christchurch, Swanage Jazz Festival, The Woodman at Sevenoaks, Jazz On The Quay, the Bulls Head at Barnes, The Studio on the IOW, St Ants Club in London plus the Good Intent and Eagle in Rochester. ‘Not Just Sax’ specialise in strong, rhythmic, melodic jazz, which features all the players. The repertoire includes a lot of latin tunes/ swing/ pretty waltzes as well as beautiful original tunes written by Ray Shea and more recently has included Sarah on vocals as well!
Sarah thrives on continuous learning and enjoys meeting people who share her enthusiasm to progress. This has included attending Jazz summer schools with Global Music Foundation in Certaldo, Amsterdam Music Conservatoire, Jamie Aebersold, Guildhall College, Trinity Music College, Warlington Summer School, jazz summer schools in France and Mehr Clef courses in London and Sussex. This has let to excellent playing and tuition with people including Alan Barnes, Frank Griffiths, Steve Waterman, Gerald Mc Chrystal, Gilad Atzmon, Jamie Aebersold, Shelley Yoelin, George Bouchard, Mike Tracey, Rob Buckland, Andy Scott, Simon Purcell, Julian Siegal, Stephane Chausse and Alex Terrier to name but a few!!
Sarah currently works full time as an independant music peripatetic , teaches pre prep music classes (2 1/2 yrs – 7 )runs her band ‘Not Just Sax’ , is lead tenor player in GOJO (Girls Only Jazz Orchestra), works as a solo or duo artist, regularly plays on the London scene with the Karl Charity quartet and freelance’s as a session player for recordings/guest spots and for pit orchestra’s. Sarah has worked with a multitude of singers including, Tina May, Louise Clare Marshall (Jools Holland Band), Jacqui Hicks and Harry Skinner (Producers) and has performed at the IOW Jazz Festival, Jazz On The Meadow , Newport Jazz Festival, Brighton fringes and several times at the Swanage Jazz festival.
What people are saying about Sarah...
"A huge thank you for your wonderful playing at our wedding in Mudeford on May 4th. The music you and Guy created was beautiful and absolutely perfect for the sunny (hooray!!) afternoon"
Alice and David Berry
“A massive thank you for providing us with such beautiful music for our afternoon- it was absolutely perfect”
“Thank you for the great music. It was perfect for the event. The sound the 2 of you make is lovely and as a musical family we really appreciate it. Also our guests thought it was super.”
“On behalf of Winterslow PCC may I thank you and your trio for a superb evenings music. It was absolutely great and set off the whole occasion”
Roche Court- Gillian Gailey
“The band were great, I would highly recommend them. They arrived on time despite the rapidly increasing snow. The music was fabulous throughout and was enjoyed by all who attended. The members of the band were extremely polite and friendly. Thank you for the great night.”
“It was a delight having you with us on Valentines Day, everyone had a lovely time”
Simon Hartwell, Marketing and Banqueting manager, Connaught Hotel
“Thank you for an amazing evening of jazz last night. Without a doubt, that's the best jazz gig I have been to. It was a privilege, & a pleasure, to be there.”