Chris Pearce’s Frenchmen Street Jazz Band was originally formed in 2002 and played with various personnel until 2011 when the current line-up was formed. The band got its name from Frenchmen Street in New Orleans which lies just to the east of The French Quarter. Frenchmen Street has developed into a bustling centre of Jazz Clubs and bars providing a good alternative to the over commercialised Bourbon Street and surrounding area. Chris and his brother- in -law stayed on Frenchmen Street above the internationally famed Snug Harbor jazz club.
Chris started playing in the late 1950’s in the Bath and Bristol area joining the Blue Note Jazz Band in 1976. During the next 30 years he played with the Band all over the UK and Europe until the untimely death of their leader Roger Bennett in 2005. Since that time Chris was the Reeds player with The Antique Six Jazz Band until December 2011 when the Band played its final gig.
The aim of The Frenchmen Street Jazz Band is to try and bring new material into its performance as well as presenting the old favorites in good arrangements.
The members of the Band bring various influences to the music, ranging from the Classic period of the 1920’s through Ellington and the developing mainstream styles of the 40’s and 50’s up to Arlo Guthrie and Dave Brubeck.
- Richard Green on Dennis Armstrong’s Oliver Band
- Dave Spooner on The 2013 Festival
- Jim Forrest on The 2013 Festival
- Geoff Cronin on The 2013 Festival
- Paddy Armstrong on The 2013 Festival
- Martin Bright on The 2013 Festival
- David Taylor on The 2013 Festival
- Helen C. Polvino on Liane Carroll Trio
- Tony Davis on Rachel’s Dream
- Bob Caldwell on Liz Fletcher Quintet, with Andy Panayi