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image for Music - Jazz item typeWe Are Leif + Will Hobson's Groove Merchants

Music - Jazz, Sun 17 Mar 2019, £12-£14

Colchester Arts Centre

Colchester Arts Centre

Colchester Arts Centre


Led by the songwriting team of Louise Victoria and Mark Whitlam, We Are Leif are currently touring to promote their acclaimed debut release, ‘Breathe’.

This group deftly span the balance of contemporary jazz sensibilities with the groove and sound world more associated with Neo Soul, R'n'B and downtempo. Musically there are nods in the direction of Erykah Badu, London Grammar and Jill Scott, while retaining a classic Bristol sound, steeped in the history, and ethereal and haunting elements of bands like Portishead and Massive Attack.

Hark back to the 90s Acid Jazz-led heyday of jazz influenced sounds breaking into the mainstream - thanks to bands such as Brand New Heavies and Incognito - and you have an idea where WAL are coming from.

Blending their improv jazz chops with Neo Soul and R‘n’B, then giving it a smoky, backstreet club vibe borrowed from Trip Hop and unmistakably Bristolian, with ‘Breathe’ We Are Leif have created something that is reassuringly familiar yet excitingly new.

Between them, the band members have worked with the likes of ECM artists Andy Sheppard and Iain Ballamy, plus Joss Stone, Beverley Knight, Jason Rebello, Clare Teal, Adrian Utley of Portishead, Goldfrapp’s Will Gregory, The Black Crowes’ Mark Ford and Type Sun.

Louise Victoria (Vocals), Dale Hambridge (Piano/Keyboards), Chris Jones (Electric Bass), Mark Whitlam (Drums/Electronics).

+ Support
Supporting are Will Hobson’s Groove Merchants, comprising first year jazz students studying at the prestigious Guildhall School of Music and Drama.

Fronted by former Essex Youth Jazz Orchestra pianist Will Hobson, the band members have a diverse range of influences spanning the decades - from jazz’s inception to the modern day. Their support set will focus on groove-based music, playing original tunes alongside other musicians' compositions, with stimuli including Mike Stern, Robert Glasper, Aaron Parks and Pat Metheny.

Will Hobson (Piano), Francisco Garcia de Paredes (Guitar), Olly Meredith (Bass), Callum Murray (Drums).

". . . clear musical ideas used as the basis for fresh interpretation within their chosen form, and thanks to the singer’s confidence and clarity, the results have an integration that belies the comparative newness of their project." - on ‘Breathe’.

“Murmur has upped their game. What was already a great band has upped it even further.” - Jamie Cullum.

“Well judged, well executed and based on some very accomplished songwriting, this is a fantastic slice of down-beat music for upbeat people.” - Tap The Feed.

"While ‘I’ve Found You’ may be the stand-out track, there is much to love about ‘Breathe’ in its entirety. In fact, starting at the beginning and listening to the end will make you happier with your life." - A Little More Vodka.

“We Are Leif will blossom likewise, but on the strength of this compelling live performance, they’ve already made an excellent beginning.” - B24/7

Baby changing facilitiesCoach parties acceptedCredit cards accepted (no fee)Credit cards accepted (with charge)Disabled toiletsEducation/study areaFacilities for groupsAccepts groupsFacilities for conferencingFacilities for corporate hospitality

Event details

Dates Times
Sun 17 Mar 2019 19:00


Tickets £14 / £12 Concessions
Jazz Express Offer: Book for any three gigs and get tickets for just £10 each!

Also at this Venue

Events at this Venue


Church Street,


See location of Colchester Arts Centre on Google mapsSee location on Google maps

Map reference: TL 993251  Lat: 51.88880 Long: 0.89475

Colchester Arts Centre Parking

The closest car park to the Arts Centre is St Mary's Car Park. Find out more about parking in Colchester.

By Public Transport

Many buses that come into Colchester Town Centre Colchester stop on Head Street and the High Street, which are both just a few minutes' walk from the venue.

The closest train station is Colchester Town Station, a 15 minute walk from the Arts Centre. Colchester North Station is a 20 minute walk away (follow the Fixing the Link walking trail) or only a 10 minute journey by bus.

There are bike racks at the Arts Centre.

Parking: with charge


  • Baby changing facilitiesBaby changing facilities
  • Coach parties acceptedCoach parties accepted
  • Credit cards accepted (no fee)Credit cards accepted (no fee)
  • Credit cards accepted (with charge)Credit cards accepted (with charge)
  • Disabled toiletsDisabled toilets
  • Education/study areaEducation/study area
  • Facilities for groupsFacilities for groups
  • Accepts groupsAccepts groups
  • Facilities for conferencingFacilities for conferencing
  • Facilities for corporate hospitalityFacilities for corporate hospitality