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Ocean Eddie | James Arben & Shirley Smart


Sunday, 29 January 2023


£10.50 (£5.50 students)

Ocean Eddie | James Arben & Shirley Smart

Stan Maris (accordion)

Andreas Bral (piano & harmonium)

Viktor Perdieus (saxophones)


Shirley Smart (cello)

James Arben (saxophone)

Ocean Eddie

When circular currents coexist within larger ocean movements, they are sometimes referred to as eddies. Equal bodies competing for limited space and impact.

The overlap­ping functions and timbres of this line-up evoke a similar phenomenon. Usually every player can play every part, which leads to improvi­sa­tions in which orches­tra­tion is central. Modular composi­tions and pieces that start from a central motif are the starting points. From here, the redistri­bu­tion of impulse, sound and silence begins again and again. This creates an interac­tion that can be both playful, tireless and slightly competi­tive.

Their debut album was released in September 2022 by El Negocito Records.

Shirley Smart & James Arben

James and Shirley met whilst working with Ethiopian vibes master Mulatu Astatke, and quickly discovered a shared interest in the possibilities of free improvisation that drew on their common interests and aesthetic, as well as musical dialogue and interaction in a free setting. They'll be performing in the lovely Barn at St John's College.

Shirley is recognised as one of the UK’s most versatile and creative cellists – being equally at home and well versed in jazz and Middle Eastern music, as well as classical music. She has worked with many leading jazz and world music groups, including Antonio Forcione, Mulato Astatke, Gilad Atzmon, Neil Cowley, Julian Ferraretto, Robert Mitchell, and Alice Zawadski. James is a multi-instrumentalist and a versatile creative musician. He's performed with a vast array of artists, including Alexander Hawkins, Seb Rochford, producer Tony Visconti, St Etienne, Robert Plant, and The Hackney Colliery Band.

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