Craig Milverton (p) Sandy Suchodolski (b) Nick Milward (d)
Craig was born in Bexley, Kent and took piano lessons from the ages of 7 -12, but has no formal jazz training. His main influences are Oscar Peterson and Bill Evans and his jazz interest was spawned by his fathers record collection, initially the Boogie Woogie pianists and then Oscar and Ella. Craig began performing in public as young as 10 years of age, but it was not until he was 21 that he turned professional. He moved to Devon in 1985 and began gigging with local rock ‘n’ roll and jazz funk groups.
From 1987 to 1991, he toured regularly across the UK and Europe, including three Cork Jazz Festival appearances with R’n’B group Junkyard Angels.
From 1992 to 1995, he was with the Pete Allen Jazz Band and toured regularly across Europe and the UK, performing at the top jazz festivals and venues. He played frequently on the BBC Jazz Notes programme.
In 1994 he toured across California, including performances at the Sacramento Jazz Festival. From 1995 -1998, Craig was part of Terry Lightfoot’s Jazz Band. Regular UK and European tours followed. He also toured twice across the Middle East and played two broadcasts for ‘Jazz Notes’.
In 1997, he joined Digby Fairweather’s eclectic group Dig’s Half Dozen, and continues to work regularly with the band. From 2002-7 he was a member of George Melly’s backing group. He has worked with an enormous number of British Musicians in a multitude of formats, and played at Festivals and clubs in Britain, Europe, the Middle East and the USA.
Craig’s also works extensively with his own bands, especially his trio. In 2005 his trio CD ‘Three Flow’ was reviewed by Richard Palmer (Biographer for Oscar Peterson’s ‘A Jazz Odyssey’) and was his choice for CD of the year for Jazz Journal International. The CD was launched at The Pizza Express, Dean St, London to much praise.
Craig is also very much in demand as a solo pianist, with his virtuoso ability and comprehensive knowledge of the entire jazz spectrum. He is much sought after as a skilled accompanist to such star vocalists as Stacey Kent and Tina May. His trios are regularly required to back visiting American soloists at festivals and venues across the country including Scott Hamilton, Ken Peplowski and Warren Vache. Few British pianists have Craig’s’ thorough knowledge and grasp of jazz styles. His love of the music shines through and he is a natural at whatever he plays.
His latest show ‘A Tribute To Oscar Peterson’ with his Quartet paying homage to Craig’s greatest inspiration (CD’ Live At The Lights’). ‘ZZ Bop’, a more contemporary Quartet featuring American Bassist Tom Hill (CD ‘Josie’s Bosie’). ‘Organsolar’ a Hammond based Quartet featuring Top Tenor man, Ian Ellis (CD ‘Live At Hayne Barton’), and the Dale/Milverton Quartet with Plymouth based Tough Tenor man, Martin Dale (CD ‘From Hand To Mouth’). He is accompanist to the late Humphrey Lyttelton’s favourite vocalist, Louise Parker and they have a new show together named ‘When Oscar met Billie’ paying homage to jazz greats Oscar Peterson and Billie Holiday.