Joe O’Callaghan’s Freeplay May 25

Clarion Hotel, Sunday May 25th at 7.30pm. Admission €7.

Freeplay is a band put together by guitarist Joe O’Callaghan and features Joe on acoustic guitar, Derek Whyte on bass, Matt Berrill on sax and clarinet and Phil MacMullan on drums.

The band plays original compositions by Joe which contain a combination of written passages and free improvisation. The emphasis is on quieter, more reflective music.

Support on the night will be by great local Limerick jazz duo Sian Murray(vocals) / Kevin Lynch(guitar).

“Limerick’s Joe O’Callaghan is a genuine force in Irish jazz guitar, with extended tasteful lines, contemporary chord shapes and an instinct for rocking out when the need arises.”(Improvised Music Company)

Joe O’Callaghan has performed with many leading Irish and international jazz musicians including Len McCarthy, Louis Stewart, Ronan Guilfoyle, Sean Carpio, Richie Buckley, Michael Buckley, CSL Parker, Honor Heffernan, Jim Doherty, Maria Tecce, Dorothy Murphy, Mike Neilsen, Tommy Halferty, Brian Dunning, Hugh Buckley, Nick Roth, Ivan Paduart, Martin Speake, Linley Hamilton, Julian Arguelles, Dave Liebman, Tom Rainey, Nils Wogram, John Rocco, Tanya Kalmanovitch, Paul Williamson, Vincent Courtois.

Joe was a member of Ronan Guilfoyle’s bands Microclimate and Metier and played in two of his major works; “Simulacrum” at the Mermaid Theatre in Bray and “Terms and conditions apply” at the Project Arts Centre, Dublin.  In August 2007,he played in Dublin with Ronan to celebrate the 60th birthday of Dave Liebman,on a piece titled “Hand,Head,Heart”, with a quintet featuring Dave Liebman.  He has also played with Fuzzy Logic Ensemble,a band led by Dylan Rynhart and played on their album `Mouthpiece`. Currently, he has his  own acoustic quartet `Freeplay` and has just formed a new trio with Derek Whyte (bass) and Ben Wanders(drums).

Joe is mostly self-taught on guitar. He attended improvisation classes and master classes at Newpark Music School,Blackrock ,Dublin where his teachers included Ronan Guilfoyle, Tommy Halferty, Mike McMullen, Dave Liebman, Richie Bierach, Simon Nabatov, Sonny Fortune and Dave Holland. He also works as a tutor for the Limerick Jazz Workshop which teaches adults and teenagers the fundamentals of jazz and regularly holds student concerts in the Limerick area.

Matthew Berrill hails from Headford, County Galway, Ireland. He grew up with a rich musical education, learning various styles of music from his parents and local teachers. He graduated with a Masters Degree in Music Performance in May 2010, where he specialised in jazz saxophone, clarinet and composition, studying with John Ruocco at the Royal Conservatoire, Den Haag, The Netherlands. He is currently based in Galway where he is a freelance teacher and performer.

He has played on many stages in Europe including the North Sea Jazz Jazz Festival in Holland, Avignon Jazz Festival in France and throughout his home country of Ireland. He was awarded a place in the Banff International Workshop in Jazz and Creative Music in Canada in 2007 and 2009 and in August 2009, won the ‘Grand Prix’ in the Tremplin Jazz Competition in Avignon, France as part of the Christian Mendoza Group.

Matthew has featured on many CD recordings by ensembles based in Ireland, Holland, Denmark and Norway. He continues to play traditional Irish music on the guitar and violin having traveled to perform in such diverse locations such as Kenya, America, Czech Republic and Italy.

He has participated in Masterclasses and Workshops with many musicians and educators including Dave Douglas, Miguel Zenon, Branford Marsalis, Steve Coleman, Dave Liebman, Jerry Granelli, Clarence Penn, Mark Levine, Joshua Redman, Dave Binney, The ICP Orchestra and many others.

Derek Whyte has been an active part of the Dublin Jazz scene for the best part of 10 years. In both teaching and performing capacities.He has played extensively with many of the leading jazz musicians all over the country, including Mike Nielsen, Conor Guilfoyle, Phil Ware and groupssuch as The Jenna Harris Quintet, Redivider and The Fuzzy Logic ensemble amongst others. He has also led several groups who have toured many areas of the country. These groups worked extensively with unconventional Harmony and Rhythm. He has also more recently played with several groups in the UK.In July 2006 He completed a degree in Jazz studies and Jazz Performance with first class honors. During that time he Studied under the tutelage of Ronan Guilfoyle.During this time he has also attended and participated in master classes taught by such renowned artists as David Binney, Steve Coleman, Chandler Sardjoe and John Patticucci. In the last few years, Derek has been teaching in Newpark Music Centre.Specializing in Rhythm and teaching several Rhythm studies classes, he also teaches Bass and Ensemble classes.

Phil MacMullan has been involved with some of the leading contemporary jazz groups in Ireland. He toured Ireland with Fuzzy Logic Ensemble featuring Tom Arthurs(UK) on trumpet/flugelhorn and recorded on the band’s albums “Mouthpiece” and “New Hat”for Lyric FM’s “Music Spoken Here” program. He formed ‘Yurodny’ with Nick Roth, Oleg Ponomarev, Cora Venus Lunny, Adrian Hart, Kate Ellis,  Colm O’Hara, Francesco Turrissi and Dave Redmond. Phil is also a member of the Cortisol Quintet with Matthew Berrill, Colm O’Hara Justin Carroll and Andrew Csibi.  He has also performed with other leading Irish musicians including Louis Stewart and Mick Coady.

Phil studied Percussion at the College of Music, Dublin(DIT) under Monica Bonnie and at Newpark Music Centre, Blackrock under Ronan Guilfoyle, Michael Buckley, Phil Ware, Mike Neilsen, Conor Guilfoyle and Mick Coady. He completed Professional Musician Training Course(PMTC) in1999 and was awarded the Guildhall Diploma in Jazz Performance with Honours in 2002. Phil studied privately with the late John Wadham and has attended master classes with Steve Coleman,Dave Liebman, Elvin Jones and Rick Peckham.