Nubya Garcia

Internet Crush:
Nubya Garcia is London’s favourite saxophonist

We meet one of London's leading saxophonists, the supremely talented Nubya Garcia for this week's Internet Crush.

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Social media has changed the way we interact with our favourite artists. More than just musicians, they’re now personalities, people we can interact with on the daily. Now more than ever we’re aware that musicians are pretty normal people, they just have a weird job. Every week we get to know one of our favourite SoundCloud heroes, internet dating style, in our new column, Internet Crush.

Nubya Garcia is a pillar of London’s jazz scene. One of the city’s leading saxophonists, she’s a regular collaborator with the likes of Moses Boyd and Blue Lab Beats and has also worked with Jungle legend Congo Natty. On top of that, she plays in several ensembles including the all-female Nerija septet and the critically acclaimed Maisha. This summer is set to be a big one for Nubya, seeing her play across the UK and beyond, including at this year’s Dimensions Festival. We caught some time with one of the busiest women in UK jazz for this week’s Internet Crush to find out her saxophone idols and where to catch the best live jazz in London.

What’s the secret to London’s jazz revival?
Wouldn’t say there’s a secret really.

Where’s the best place to catch Jazz in London?
There’s are loads of places. Too many to name and big range for sure – I guess I’ll mention a couple of the smaller ones with a hell of a lot of energy. Not just jazz throughout all of these:

-Mau Mau Bar (every Thurs for Jazz re:freshed’s residency),

-The Royal Albert pub on Sundays in Deptford – Tom Sankey / Good Evening Arts have been putting on wicked gigs there weekly for years.

-Total Refreshment Centre.

-Haggerston late on a Sunday night.

-Café Oto.

-Cable Café (again one of Tom Sankeys regular nights loads of bands have come through these nights).

-Prince of Wales (Brixton).

-Steam Down (at Buster Mantis in Deptford every weds).

And then the more obvious bigger venues too: Ronnie Scotts/Barbican/Royal Festival Hall/Jazz Café/The Hideaway.

Who’s the real Saxophone Colossus?
I mean… I can’t choose just one.

If you could only listen to one jazz album for the rest of your life what would it be?
Probably either A Love Supreme (Coltrane) or The Piano (Herbie Hancock). Maybe Nefertiti (Miles Davis) orrr Sonny Rollins’ Saxophone Colossus, orrr last one – McCoy Tyner The Real McCoy

Finish this sentence: The most underrated instrument in jazz is…
Underrated? I don’t know, to be honest… Maybe trombone. Maybe flute, maybe tuba, maybe bass clarinet.

Who do you roll with?
A bunch of different people – mainly friends from bands, friends from school, and the new people you meet along the way.

Describe your sound in just a sentence:
A big melting pot of a lot of influences.

Favourite colour:
Red.

Favourite movie:
The Lion King.

What’s your star sign?
Sagittarius.

Last book you read:
The Good Immigrant.

First single/album you ever bought?
Jaco Pastorious’ self-titled album.

First band/act you ever went to see live?
Hmm, maybe Herbie Hancock in my early teens?

Earliest memory?
Playing at nursery in those toy red cars with the yellow roof

What do you do in your spare time?
Sleep/read/hang with people!

Are you a morning or evening person?
Definitely evening.

First song you ever wrote?
Not sure.. maybe ‘Open Your Eyes’ was the first one.

Favourite song of your own?
I like them all for different reasons

Favourite lyric?
My emancipation don’t fit your equation

Nubya Garcia plays Dimensions Festival in Pula, Croatia, 29th August – 2nd September. 

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