Following on from its launch back in December with Plastic Mermaids, St James in Guernsey kicked off their Global Collection series for 2023 with a visit to the island from upcoming, young, jazz trumpeter Jackson Mathod and his band with new local four-piece, Holmes, opening the show.
Made up of three quarters of Bordeaux Blue in Glenn Holmes (guitar and occasional vocals), Andy Degnen (fiddle) and Paul Harrison (bass) along with Squirrel on drums, they made an unsurprisingly confident and assured debut.
With Glenn leading the band with some great guitar work that was subtle when needed but also found plenty of time to shine, he performed with a relaxed and assured confidence of the sort that only comes with his level of experience while also showing an underrated skill as a frontman and songwriter.
Spanning sounds from something akin to The Eagles through jazz, blues, some folky moments, boogie and more, including one that reminded me somewhat of Buffalo Huddleston thanks to the fiddle, the four piece were greeted exceptionally warmly by the crowd who were already filling all the seats around the venue, laid out in so-called ‘cabaret style’ and left us, so we thought, nicely prepared for the evening’s headliner.
Taking to the stage with trumpet in hand and dressed in tracksuit, trainers and a matching beanie hat, Jackson Mathod was not exactly what I had been expecting (though I’ll be honest I wasn’t sure what I expected) but, as he and his band progressed through their first track, it quickly became clear we were in for something special as energy and a terrific sound flowed from the stage.