We love the Festival of Chichester.  Jazz Smugglers have become one of the famous FESTIVAL BANDS in SUSSEX. The JAZZ SMUGGLERS EVENTS are all different. Sometimes the music is full of Gershwin and Cole Porter. At other times we are playing songs loved by Jazz Club patrons.

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Live jazz bands in Sussex The website for jazz enthusiasts. See the gigs Jazz Smugglers band is planning for the 2017 Festival of Chichester

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One of the Sussex Jazz Bands One of the Sussex Jazz Bands

We play mainly in CHICHESTER, WEST SUSSEX, which is close to BOGNOR for LIVE JAZZ, but we also work as a live JAZZ BAND in WORTHING, and as a JAZZ BAND in PORTSMOUTH,  There are not many JAZZ BANDS IN CHICHESTER, there are one or two live BANDS IN BOGNOR, more BANDS IN WORTHING and even more BANDS IN PORTSMOUTH.

There are many JAZZ BANDS IN EAST SUSSEX but far fewer JAZZ BANDS IN WEST SUSSEX. If you want soft romantic music for WEDDING RECEPTIONS SUSSEX. or a LIVE JAZZ TRIO at your WEDDING or PRIVATE PARTY as background music book us please.

Web master Geoff Valenti

Playing jazz guitar

Guitarists are known by their desire to play one or two extra notes on their instrument after the song has ended.  This works well in the early part of the gig, but sooner or later the drummer notices what happens and will cover their final odd notes with a short flourish on the drums.  Later still, the alto player joins in. In the hands of professionals this becomes an extended improvised coda which surprises everyone since it bears no relation to the song at all. Guitarists try to sit next to drummers but a long way from pianists. There is no known reason why. Perhaps it is because pianists can use all ten fingers at the same time

Ending songs

This is one of the most difficult bits in jazz to do properly.  Some bands are on record as not knowing how to do it at all, and once the final melody has been played out, someone then strikes up with another solo. (True) This makes for fascinating and meaningful social interaction within the group.  This is one reason why many audiences prefer to watch jazz players rather than listen to them.

Starting solos

Knowing where the 1 is tests the mettle of all soloists.  For some of them, listening to the music itself is of little help, and they need someone to nod them in on time. Singers are particularly prone to starting problems and frequently offer themselves to band leaders who look after them in this regard.

Classical musicians playing jazz

Jazz players all have feelings of doubt when they play with classically trained players. Jazz workshop groups sometimes attack classical newcomers by telling them “Just follow the 2-5-1 progressions, dropping down a minor third in the bridge.”  Finally they take away the music away from them, and immediately start in the count in. Professionals raise their game here by saying, “Let’s do it in Gb” and then starting the count in, in double time.

The way for classical musicians to get their own back is to suggest that the piano or guitar player plays the melody.  These people can only read chords and not dots so they are cooked.


Drummers usually take up the instrument as part of an anger management course.  You can’t play as many notes as a drummer plays and worry about what key you are in as well  There are too many jokes about drummers, too often told in public announcements for them to feel totally at ease at all times. A bit of TLC to drummers pays off.

Double bass

Double bass players have feelings of insecurity,  carrying their instruments to gigs in self-abasement.  They feel bad because they always play far fewer notes than anyone else but receive the same money. They are given occasional solos to play because the rest of the band want a lift in the van going home afterwards. The bassist will love it and will smile shyly if you tell him that his is the most important instrument in the band. This has the advantage of being true, unlike everything you say to everyone else about how good they sound.  Sincerity needs to be practiced.

Playing duff solos

If you play a duff solo it is because you have forgotten where you are in the song, or forgotten what key you are supposed to be playing at that moment, or because you are out of it anyway.  After you have finished everyone goes quiet – although everyone knows where you went wrong and will talk about it behind your back. The thing to do is to ask the band loudly, “Did someone cross the beat at bar 23?”  The band will look at the drummer, who will say “Sorry” and you are off the hook.

Jazz Pianists

Pianists are up against time. They know too much. They know about harmony and chord progressions. They have to make a decision between 786 different chords and voicings, plus substitute chords, they have ten fingers to use and the possibility of using any of seventy-four scales. They are also the only people who can see every note they are going to play, which somehow makes the problem worse. A fast swing piece at 240 bpm with two chords in each bar means they have 0.5 of a second to decide whether to play the altered chord, or the diminished chord, or the straightforward dominant 7th or maybe even a flat sixth triad in the upper structure and how to voice it and which inversion to use. (Which fingers on which notes) In addition they have to do something interesting with the fingers of their right hand. This all may seem a bit technical but it indicates why there is so much turmoil going on inside pianists heads and why they all end up playing by ear like everyone else after the first four bars. It is little wonder that they are bald and introverted.  It is also the reason why they are so condescending to the rest of the group.

Playing Jazz Saxophone

The problem here is that they are recruited and trained by other saxophone players. Personality tests shows that they are exhibitionists, first and foremost. Some of them are social contrarians who will play in a scruffy T-shirt with We Love Butlins, Skegness on the front. These people will always play with a very dirty instrument. But a dirty instrument many also be a much loved archeological find. They are taught that their aim in soloing is to play as many different scales as possible at a very fast pace and never to acknowledge that the rhythm section is telling the audience, and them, where the music is in reality. Later on in life, saxophone players realise that they really need to know more about chords and progressions so they buy a small keyboard in order to see the notes. Then they find that there is a lot of mental effort involved in learning about progressions and so on, so they end up playing the blues scale 99.9% of the time.

Jazz Trumpeters

Trumpeters are nearly always male and are in it only for the sex. If they play loud, and very high they can attract women from miles around. Not for nothing was triple tonguing invented by a trumpeter.

Jazz singers

No one in a band can make the musicians change the usual key of the song except a female singer.

If the singer smiles at them and says thank you then the rhythm section will forgive her for not coming in on time, not finding the right note and for talking to the audience while the soloists are playing. Male singers have to stick with the key the music was written in.


GUIDE TO PLAYING JAZZ  - 1 For fun only


Ending songs

Starting solos

Playing duff solos

Jazz pianists

Classical musicians


Double bass

Saxophone players



Simple jazz playing

Jazz teaching


Avoiding copyright

Real Books

Playing by Ear

Band in a Box