Jim Mullen: guitar
Zoe Francis: voice
Riccardo Ruggieri: piano
Alessandro Maiorino: bass
Enzo Zirilli: drum
In February 2013 a quartet with overflowing energy presented its first CD in our cave: the RadioLondra quartet presented its eponymous album, in honor of our festival that had given birth to it three years earlier, in the debut season of our fantastic review that will be 15 years old in October 2024. That quartet featured Jim Mullen and Luca Boscagin on guitar, Ross Stanley on Hammond organ and Enzo Zirilli on drums. Jim's words on that occasion are vivid and very topical testimony to the enthusiasm that this living legend has for our jazz festival: "[...] RadioLondra is the brainchild of Enzo Zirilli, who, in addition to his astonishing technique on the drums, is a kind of "visionary". He is in charge of an exchange program that introduced the best British jazz musicians to his hometown. I met Enzo for the first time in London for a concert and I was literally stunned by his style. When he later invited me to Italy for RadioLondra he already had the band in mind. [...]. RadioLondra is the first CD of the band whose chemistry and interaction are a constant source of inspiration for me. Long live RadioLondon!" In this regard, Enzo wrote: "... Playing with Jim Mullen and recording an album with him is a dream come true for me, since even before I met him personally he was one of my favorite musicians. His human energy is incredible, and the extraordinary music that comes out of it is just a logical consequence." Six years after his last, memorable concert at FolkClub, the stainless Jim Mullen returns to our stage to testify in flesh and blood his enthusiasm for the festival, accompanying with his legendary guitar, together with Riccardo Ruggieri's piano and Alessandro Maiorino's double bass, the fantastic singer Zoe Francis, her companion in music and partner in life.
Jim Mullen. Born in 1945 in Scotland, he is a guitarist with a truly unique and unmistakable style: just like Wes Montgomery before him, Jim uses his thumb as a pick. Already with Brian Auger's Oblivion Express, in the 70s, touring the USA with drummer Robbie MacIntosh's Average White Band, he met Dick Morrisey, saxophonist with whom, throughout the 80s, he would be the leader of British jazz-funk in a pioneering duo. Winner of numerous British Awards, featured in The All Stars produced by Sir Paul McCartney, Jim is considered a true living legend in Britain.
Zoe Francis, who has been breathing art since her childhood in Ireland (granddaughter of the painter Colin Middleton and daughter of musician John Francis), began singing while living in New York, attending weekly jazz workshops by pianist Barry Harris and performing jam sessions with some brilliant American musicians, including Harry Allen and Joe Cohn. Back in the UK, she began collaborating with pianist Dave Newton, with whom she recorded her first CD. Her second album, "The Very Thought of You", was recorded live in 2015 at London's legendary Club 706, featuring Jim Mullen and a band of UK All-Stars, featuring saxophonist Stan Sulzmann, pianist Gareth Williams, bassist Mick Hutton and drummer Enzo Zirilli.
Riccardo Ruggieri. Pianist, drummer and fine composer and educator, he was born in Turin and is a constant element of the Turin jazz scene of the last 20 years.
Alessandro Maiorino. Bassist and composer born in Rome, is one of the most solid and versatile Italian bass players. He has played in jazz, pop, rock, hip hop groups (Manu Chao and Baustelle, among others).
Enzo Zirilli, born in Turin, Londoner by adoption, arrived in London in 2004 to become one of the most sought-after drummers in the London scene for the next 15 years. Back in Turin he now teaches jazz drums at the city conservatory. Also at home in soul, funk, Latin and world music projects, it is an authentic engine and generator of vital and musical energy.