Big House began life as the house trio at the long-running Jailhouse Jazz Club in Arundel, UK. Having successfully backed a host of touring Ronnie Scott's and international artists, the trio decided to expand to a five-piece in 2019 and record its own material. The somewhat ironic release of the band's debut titled "Freedom" at the start of a global lockdown, drove the band to build their own studio and begin a year-long process of composing and recording a follow-up album, "Love In The Time of Corona."
The members' experience playing venues such as the Montreux Jazz Festival, Carnegie Hall, and Vienna's Musikverien is mirrored in their serious and hardworking approach to getting their music to an ever-expanding audience. In addition to recording a new album over lockdown, the band developed a multimedia Duke Ellington retrospective show examining the life of the famous composer through the narrated words of his colleagues, as well as through a host of new, innovative arrangements of the Duke's material. The show recently completed a sold-out run at the Arundel Festival, and has already been booked for a second run later this year. In addition, the band has already begun work on a new album, The Bigger Picture, and continues to combine its musical ideas with a hunger to reach new audiences.
The band comprises:
Mike Carey on piano
Mike Comber on double bass
Stephen Cass on drums and percussion
Paul Hodgson on tenor sax and flute
David Hepworth on trumpet and flugel
The debut album, Freedom, features several guest artists
Raul D'Oliveira (Joe Jackson's Jumpin Jive band; Elton John) on trumpet and flugel
Clare Nicholas on accordion
Phil Gravett on guitar
Jon Wigg on violin
All of the tracks to date are compositions by Mike Carey that the band have embraced and interpreted with their own individual musical voices, creating jazz that is richly innovative and lyrical while being accessible and compelling to new audiences.
Video and additional tracks from the band are available at bighouse.band