Thursday, June 7, 2012

Chris Walker joins the UK Health Radio team

Thursdays on the new health radio station for the UK, UK Health Radio, includes two new jazz programmes including the highly acclaimed Chris Walker Show.

Chris was born in 1939 and took up playing clarinet at the age of 15, having been a member of the school recorder band since he was 11. After leaving school he played regularly around the London jazz scene, as a member of The Freddy Shaw Jazzmen, before becoming a professional musician with The London City Stompers and, later, with the Mike Daniels Big Band and Colin Kingwell’s Jazz Bandits.

Chris moved to Hampshire in 1969 and, since then, he has worked with most of the local jazz personalities, was a member of The Real Ale & Thunder Band for 18 years, and has run his own highly successful 5-piece ‘Swingtet’ for the last 21 years.

Whilst with the Real Ale & Thunder Band, Chris was, in 1987, the musical director for an historic BBC “Songs of Praise” from The Maltings in Farnham and, between 1980 and 2007; he has produced a series of music and information based jazz programmes for BBC local radio all across the South.

In addition to managing and fronting ‘The Chris Walker Swingtet’, Chris has, for P&O Cruises, co-ordinated Jazz Themes aboard nine highly praised cruises on board Canberra and Oriana, Aurora and Artemis. He also acts as jazz advisor to Portsmouth City Council for their Jazz Day every summer on Southsea seafront, helped set up the original concept for the Chichester Real Ale & Jazz Festival, and now, annually arranges and hosts the jazz programme for the Reading Real Ale & Jazz Festival and the Lyme Regis Jazz Festival every July.