Joe Hill's North Ark is a new jazz septet, started in 2017. They play original compositions and arrangements by Joe, which are influenced by a wide variety of artists, such as Phronesis, Marius Neset, Rick Simpson, The Impossible Gentlemen, Gareth Lockrane, SFJazz Collective, Tim Garland and Vince Mendoza.
North Ark includes some of the finest young jazz players in the country, who between them, have played nationally and internationally with names such as Liane Carroll, James Maddren, Alan Barnes and The National Youth Jazz Orchestra. Members of the band have also received numerous accolades such as 'British Rising Star' (Rory Ingham) and 'BBC Young Jazz Musician Finalist' (Tom Smith).
The music written for the septet likes to engage not just the modern jazz lover, but fans of any music genre, and therefore contains a whole combination of odd time signatures, improvisation, grooves, melodic writing and accessible harmonic sequences. As well as writing music, Joe likes to find a new take on older and more well known music, inspiring the septet's very first piece, 'Blackbird' by The Beatles, which can be heard below.
The band have recently completed their Debut UK Tour, playing gigs nationwide in locations including Manchester, Birmingham, Luton, Ashburton and St Ives to name a few. Audiences have said that the band were 'as stunning as it gets', and that ''Blackbird can surely never be bettered.'
The band are currently writing and working on new music to prepare for up-coming summer tour dates at various jazz festivals.