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Contemporary artsderbyshire music and musicians

To accompany the article on Derbyshire’s Musical Heritage, we present to you here some of the many fantastic contemporary musicians we harbour within our county.

Lucy Ward2Featured musical artist: Lucy Ward

Lucy Ward has the ability to still an audience with the strength and purity of her voice, which she uses to great effect on the unaccompanied songs that sprinkle her set. A fine young songwriter and a superb performer, she wows her audience with her stunning voice.

Read our  special feature on this wonderful young up-and-coming artist.

Other musicians and bands in the County 

The Derby Choral Union was founded in 1866, and remains one of the most foremost choirs of the East Midlands. They perform 3 or 4 times per year.

Keri Degg is an Alfreton based saxophonist, composer and teacher of saxophone, clarinet and flute.  She performs solo and as a part of the Equinox Saxophone Ensemble.  Keri says of her musical calling: "Music has always been a huge part of my life and it still amazes me that so much can be spoken through it. To quote a famous quote; 'Where words fail, music speaks' as a result I'm very passionate about composing, performing, and also teaching others, it's such a joy to be creating something special and sharing that with others."

Kaleidoscope Community Music Led by Beth de Lange, Kaleidoscope Community Music is an organisation based in Derby that runs a community choir, singing workshops and runs singing projects. With Calidoscopio, a Kaleidoscope Community Music initiative, you can get involved in drumming in Derby every Saturday to play Brazilian style carnival drums. There's also a beginners class on Monday evenings. And Beth de Lange is also one fifth of the UK’s only all-mother Punk band The Mothers.

Absent Minded are a New Mills based band of 4 rock musicians. With performances at New Mills' 'One World Festival' and Buxton's 'Carnival Charity Concert' already tucked under their belts, they are a new talent to keep an eye on.

'My music is rubbish!!' So says Victor Scott.   Junk4Funk is the working name of Victor Scott, previously a professional drummer who has been drumming since 1972. He now works predominantly in Music Education and facilitates ‘Junk’ and ‘ Re-cycled music workshops’. He’s even been known to duet with a dog ... Intrigued? Then, why not check him out and confirm or deny the fact!

We asked  Pete Castle, ‘Why are you so brilliant?’ He answered, ‘Well, I'm brilliant enough to have worked as a professional performer for over 30 years and want to continue to do so for that amount longer as well! I used to enjoy doing it; I still enjoy doing it; and I'm sure I will continue to enjoy doing it!’

What more can we say, other than check him out?

Jig O'th Dub' play a mixture of Folk and Reggae music. Although only together for a year, they are already building up a following from gigging locally. Their aim is to get people up and dancing at gigs and their demo CD is due out in the New Year.

Every musical artiste aspires to cutting their own tracks at a recording studio.  Meadow Farm Studio is a professional recording studio based in Lower Hartshay. They also offer 'Recording Studio Experience Days' as fun taster sessions in addition to a variety of services from CD duplication to professional demos.

Who else have we got?

Well, with more than 350 Music and Sound Art artists and organisations listed on the website, we can't list them all here, but here is a selection for your perusal.

Individuals, groups and bands 

  • Kate Rounding: Freelance musician, sound engineer (lecturer Derby college) and experienced workshop leader.

  • Matt Roberts: Freelance Jazz and Classical trumpet player

  • Ritmo Unido Samba : A 20 strong samba band, also a 30 piece band called Frumptarn Guggenband

  • Derventio String Quartet: A professional string quartet based in Derby

  • Johnny and the Raindrops: Johnny and the Raindrops play original music for children under 8 and their families.  

  • Lardpony: Indie-pop band from Derby, taking over the world VERY slowly. 

  • Derby Concert Band: Derby Concert Band has been practising and performing music in Derbyshire for over 30 years.

  • Matt Chandler: Matt Chandler is a Jazz Guitarist based in Matlock. He plays bebop and jazz/funk and celebrates spontaneous creativity in music. 

  • High Peak Orchestra: High Peak Orchestra is a Symphony Orchestra based in the High Peak district.

  • Wirksworth Area Community Orchestra - WACO: A group of enthusiastic amateur musicians who rehearse every fortnight in Wirksworth. Providing an opportunity to people of all ages and abilities to enjoy themselves within an orchestral ensemble. 

  • The Lift Global Music Club: The Lift is a voluntary collective that stages monthly gigs by leading world music performers together with an annual festival in Glossop.

  • Brampton Community Band: Brampton Community Band is an exciting music venture based in Chesterfield.

  • Julie Ellison: An acoustic artist, acknowledged as one of the UK’s leading female guitarists, Julie Ellison performs compelling and memorable songs interwoven with beautiful guitar instrumentals and inventive interpretations of popular guitar pieces.

  • The Adamson Military Band: A local community wind band made up of volunteer amateur musicians.  

Workshop leaders and musical arts organisations

  • Brassmaster: Practical brass instrument demonstrations for both children and adults bringing a very enjoyable opportunity to your school, club or gathering.

  • China People Promotions: Providing Chinese cultural workshops for schools, communities and others, and Chinese acts for festivals and concerts.

  • Chesterfield Studios Ltd: Chesterfield Studios is a brand new arts centre within the heart of the Chesterfield community.

  • Comedius: Providing vulnerable people with access to real opportunities to gain firsthand experience within the Cultural Sector.  

  • Stepping Stones Music presents Kindermusik: Providing early years and pre-school music workshops linked to the Early Years Framework and music workshops linked to the National Curriculum, for children up to the age of 7 years. Classes are held for babies and toddlers up to the age of 3 years in community venues.

  • Orchestras Live: Orchestras Live is the national development agency for orchestral music in England.

  • Matlock Music Society: Matlock music Society presents concerts of live music, often with well established musicians.  

  • Music at Duffield: Music at Duffield organises around six concerts of classical chamber music, booking professional performers from this country and abroad.  

  • One Voice Music: Set up in 1996, OVM provides education & training in Afrocuban & Afrobrazilian percussion & dance.   

If you would like to be included in this round up, let us know the web address of your artsderbyshire profile and drop us a line to tell us just how great you are to . 
If you aren’t yet signed up with artsderbyshire’s artists directory, then do so now by visiting the following link -   

Featured artists

Angela Thompson

Angela Thompson

Paula Sharples

Paula Sharples

Richard Bett

Richard Bett


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