Jelly Jazz

Friday 31st May TBC The Hokey Cokey Parlour

Pete Isaac is best known as the DJ promoter behind the seminal
southwest club-night Jelly Jazz since January 1993, which saw its
25 th Anniversary in 2018, a major milestone for any club night.
In its early days during the height of the southwest's rave culture,
Jelly Jazz started out to provide a weekly diet of soul, funk, latin, hip
hop and break-beat all with a jazz twist to them. The blend worked
and the unpretentious, 'sweat dripping off the walls', 'dance till you
drop' attitude and atmosphere driven relentlessly by the musical
passion of resident DJ's Pete Isaac and Griff soon became a major
force in Southwest club-culture. Fairly soon Jelly Jazz developed an
international reputation and was attracting the likes of Gilles
Peterson, Norman Jay, Mr. Scruff, Quantic, Patrick Forge, Chris
Goss, Andy Smith, Russ Dewbury, Rainer Truby, Jazzanova, and DJ
Format as guest DJs.
Branching out Jelly Jazz ended up having residencies in Exeter,
Newquay, Falmouth, Totnes, Truro, the Eden Project as well as many
guest spots around the country and in Europe plus New Zealand and
Canada. The Plymouth Wednesday-night club sessions became one
of the longest running jazz based club residencies in the world,
running weekly for 14 years.
As promoter of Jelly Jazz, Pete ventured quickly into live music as
well and was the first in the southwest to book many of the early acid
jazz acts such as Mother Earth, Corduroy, Izit, The Federation and
The Big Cheese Allstars. Live music has remained an essential facet
of the Jelly Jazz experience to this day. From small gigs in the Quay
Club in Plymouth through to 1400 people at a time to see acts like
Pucho & The Latin Soul Brothers, many of the concerts are now
legendary in the southwest. The list and the quality is remarkable:
The first ever show in Europe from Sharon Jones & The Dapkings,
Lou Donaldson, The New Mastersounds, The Quantic Soul
Orchestra, The Soul Providers, The Bamboos, Sugarman 3,
Snowboy and the Latin Section, The Boogaloo Investigators,
Manteca, Kokolo Afrobeat Orchestra, Saravah Soul, Ugly Duckling to
name a few.

Another crucial part of Jelly Jazz's success was Pete's talent for
graphic design running throughout the clubs flyers, posters,
backdrops, projections, newsletters and ultimately website. Recently
these talents have turned towards album design for Freestyle
records, One Note, Dumaine, Inflexion Point and Record Kicks. He
was also responsible for getting a Ray Camacho compilation project
off the ground and finally released on Freestyle records. Something
of a labour of love, he ended up compiling it, wrote the sleeve notes,
and designed the cover himself.
As a DJ, Pete is known for energetic, hard-driving combinations of
dancefloor jazz, soul, funk, afrobeat, latin, ska, and reggae cut up and
mixed with all their modern derivatives in hip-hop, breakbeat, house
and drum and bass. In an era when most club-nights tended to play
one genre of music, at one tempo all night, Jelly Jazz defined itself
with variety. The signature sound of Jelly Jazz is bongos, beats, and
bass-lines with scratchy guitars, wholesome horns, and wailing
organs. Above all it's got to be funky!
Pete is also creative director of 45 Live. A music project that
celebrates the 7” single with events, record label and radio show in
Los Angeles.

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