OXO Tower musician Laurence Corns answers our questions
OXO Tower Brasserie musician Laurence Corns is a rare talent. His swing jazz style embraces early New Orleans: Southern blues with African and French influences. Laurence lived in Paris’ Latin Quarter where he was the guitarist for Madeleine Peyroux. He has spent time studying African music in Zimbabwe and soaking up the spirit in New Orleans.
Where are you originally from, and how did you come to be in London?
I grew up in a little hamlet in Suffolk, was given a guitar for my 14th birthday and within months knew I wanted to be a guitarist. I moved to London as soon as I finished school to realise my future.
What artists inspire you (past or present)?
Sooliman E. Rogie from Sierra Leone, Al Casey the guitarist in the Fats Waller Band, JJ Cale, Kate Bush and JS Bach, to name a few!
What’s the best gig you’ve seen recently?
It’s a toss up between Kenny Garrett at Ronnie Scotts and The Sun Ra Arkestra led by the inimitable Marshall Allen, who, at the age of 92, is a great inspiration.
What’s your career highlight to date?
Being appointed by the National Theatre as Musical Director of their acclaimed production of ‘Fela’, a wonderful portrayal of the life of Fela Kuti, the musical genius, human rights activist and pioneer of Afrobeat music.
What’s your favourite item in your wardrobe?
My two-tone brogues.
Check out the OXO Jazz schedule to see when Laurence Corns is playing in the Brasserie, along with OXO’s other incredible musical talents.
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