With special guest Chris Cain (Sunday Garden Stage Performance)
Rodger Fox is New Zealand’s foremost jazz trombonist, big band leader, jazz educator, arranger and producer. He has performed in concert with some of the biggest names in the business from the jazz and entertainment world, including Louie Bellson, Bill Reichenbach, Chuck Findley, Randy Crawford, Bobby Shew, Lanny Morgan, Bruce Paulson, Diane Schuur, Arturo Sandoval, David Clayton–Thomas, Joe Williams, the Four Tops, the Temptations, Gary Grant, Jon Papenbrook, Bill Cunliffe, Holly Hofmann, and Kevin Mahogany, to name but a few.
Rodger has promoted live concerts with his Big Band at festivals around the world, including the Montreux Jazz Festival, Monterey Jazz Festival, Manly Jazz Festival, Wichita Jazz Festival, the 1997 and 1999 International Association of Jazz Educators Convention, and concerts in London, Singapore, Australia, Poland and the USA. Rodger was winner of the 'Tui' for New Zealand Jazz Recording of the Year in 1981, 2000 and 2012, and was a finalist in 1984 and 2001.
His most recent recording, Concerti (2015) is a collaboration with pianist Michael Houstoun and the Rodger Fox Big Band, and includes a version of the first movement of Sergei Prokofiev’s Piano Concerto No. 3, arranged by Bill Cunliffe.
Chris Cain's debut recording, Late Night City Blues (Blue Rock'it Records-1987) garnered four W.C. Handy Blues Award nominations, including Guitarist of the Year. Dan Forte of Guitar Player wrote, "An impressive debut album by a top notch guitarist."
Chris Cain's jazz-tinged, blues soaked guitar and deep, warm vocals have the maturity and authenticity of bluesmen many years his senior. His expressive style is the result of a lifetime of study and the relentless pursuit of music mastery. His passion and intensity for music was ignited early in life by his mom and dad's deep love for blues and soul.
Cain was raised on stories of his father's childhood upbringing on Memphis' Historic Beale Street and attended his first B.B King concert at the tender age of three. Blues music played continuously on the home stereo and family outings were often trips to concerts. Cain recalls, "I remember when I was a kid, my dad would be mowing the lawn with the stereo blasting Muddy Waters. When I look back, that was pretty cool! There was always music playing at our house, Ray Charles, B.B. King, Freddie King, Albert King, all the greats."
At the age of eight, Cain taught himself to play guitar and began playing professionally before he was 18. Chris studied music at San Jose City College, and was soon teaching jazz improvisation on campus. Over the next twenty years, Cain would also master piano, bass guitar, clarinet, alto and tenor saxophone. The combination of his blues upbringing and his jazz studies melded to form the searing guitar style that sets Chris Cain apart and has moved him to the top ranks of the blues music scene.