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  • 5 of the BEST Music watches for you this Christmas

    Well, it looks like most of us will be spending a LOT of time alone this Christmas, with no live music to enjoy and no Christmas parties to get drunk at, we have rounded up our favourite HOT PICKS so you can relive the stories of some of the greats, and some lesser-known greats, all from your living room. These are heartwarming and inspiring movies and will make you feel connected to the industry, even when it's all on ice, so here is the music lovers guide to Xmas on the box. Grab that mulled wine, pop that corn, fetch the cosiest blanket you own and settle down for some serious SOUL nurturing this festive break. 1) SOUL on DISNEY, available from Christmas Day PG Follow the story of a frustrated music teacher and jazz pianist Joe (Jamie Foxx) who finally gets his big break with a saxophonist Dorethea Williams' new band. After his first successful audition, he's walking on air - at least until he falls down a manhole! He wakes up in some sort of limbo, a disembodied soul on the escalator to the Great Beyond. But Joe is determined to reclaim his body and the future he has always longed for. I think many of us musicians will resonate with this after this year :) (PS you can get a free subscription for three days on Disney, go get it! 2) Whiplash - on Sky Drama New Years Day 6 pm Andrew Neiman (Miles Teller) is an ambitious young jazz drummer, in pursuit of rising to the top of his elite music conservatory. Terence Fletcher (J.K. Simmons), an instructor known for his terrifying teaching methods, discovers Andrew and transfers the aspiring drummer into the top jazz ensemble, forever changing the young man's life. But Andrew's passion to achieve perfection quickly spirals into obsession, as his ruthless teacher pushes him to the brink of his ability and his sanity. 3) The Greatest Showman - on C4 New Years Day 5.30pm - 7.30pm This crowd-pleasing musical is loosely based on the incredible story and life of the incredible legendary ring-master PT Barnum. If you haven't seen this yet, now is the perfect chance to go and enjoy the show. We loosely based our Drama Club's first-ever term on the greatest showman, its rich visual tapestry gives a smorgasbord o yo inspiration to hearts young and old. Vaudeville and Music Halls were the entertainment before Netflix and Chill and for us, The Greatest Showman captures its essence entirely. With stories of triumph, personal sacrifice and tenacity, this is a heartwarming Christmas musical for sure. 4) Wild Rose - Netflix Fresh out of prison, a young Scottish woman juggles her job and two children while pursuing her dream of becoming a country music star. She soon gets her chance when she travels to Nashville, Tennesse, on a life-changing journey to discover her true voice. With a stellar soundtrack, this film by Fable Pictures, Creative Scotland, Film4 Productions and the British Film Institute the lead actress won a BAFTA nomination for best actress after it was premiered. It's raw, it's gritty, it's brilliant, go watch it. 5) Ma Rainey's Black Bottom - Netflix Set in Chicago in the 1920s, Ma Rainey's Black Bottom tells the story of Blues, Showbusiness and deals with important issues of race, art, religion and the historic exploitation of black recording artists by white producers. Capturing the sound and life spirit of Ma Rainey, this is not just for devoted Blues fans but hopefully, new fans of her music to be born out of it. We love you Ma and can't wait to dive into this over the festive period. So that's it! Have a wonderful Christmas and stay safe everyone! Oh, here is one more...for the younger divas this Xmas time...... 5) Rhyme Town Sing-a-longs on NETFLIX, season one available from Tuesday 22nd One for the younger members of the family here. Rhyme Town Sing-a-longs have created a cute little cartoon with some catchy rhymes, great for practising phonics and learning words, just make sure you listen to some other music Mum's and dad's before you go to bed, or you will be singing 'chuff chuff little train' all're welcome. PS For all the last-minute shoppers, we have a special offer on our Singing and Acting lessons this Christmas, we are selling a block of 6 x 25 min lessons for only £99! They can be used anytime over the next 6 months, (normally £155) send us a message for more info deadline for orders is 3 pm Christmas Eve so we can send you the voucher to give on Xmas day.

  • Take part in our social media lift me up campaign!!

    Everybody’s life needs a song. Social Media Video! Want to feature in a social media mashup video which will raise all of our spirits right now?? We are so excited that the incredible writer Cathianne Hall from ITV and BBC has written a poignant script for us all at this time, which when read out by many, the final video will be a mash-up of the whole script, read out by many lovers of music, bookers, agents, technicians, engineers, venues, audience members and musicians and we invite YOU to take part in it too! We hope it will remind audiences why live music is so important and also lift the spirits of many working in the arts - hang on in there, we will get through this, together. Bring us your smiles and record yourself reading out the script on the below page, send it back to us by October 18th with your social media handles and we will tag you in it when it goes live! Please share this with anyone who would love to be in it, the more the merrier! We love you! Love Kerri and the team over at Dixiebird Records XOXOXO Video tips! Download the script as a photo to your phone for easy read back reff! Film it on LANDSCAPE!! Please make sure your phone or camera is on landscape and try to centre your head/shoulders in the middle of the screen, does not need to be Hollywood quality and ideally is shot on your mobile phone in a well lit space so we can see your pretty and handsome faces! Don't overthink it! Your mobile phone on selfie mode is perfect! Feel free to add your own personality to it, get dressed up, feature your instrument/s, play a few bars, wear a glittery top, this is your video and we want to encourage you to have as much fun with it as you want! The video will be published on all our social media channels and we will tag everyone in it so please add your chosen social media handle when sending the video back! Please send all videos either to Kerri on FB page here - Kerri Layton Dixiebird FB page here - Dixiebird FB Page Or email Or upload it to youtube (please do it as an unlisted video) and send us the link! Send back the video by SUN OCT 18th Midnight! The video will be released on the 29th OCT on the Dixiebird Records Facebook Page Read more about Cathianne here! Cathianne is a writer, performer, dramaturg and script/story editor working in TV, film and theatre. Her recent TV work has been with BBC Children’s, creating a dystopian sci fi future - which we now all seem to be living in… Her TV credits include Coronation Street, Emmerdale, Hollyoaks, World’s End and The Demon Headmaster. Cathianne’s personal practice is about discovering hidden history and making it relevant to the modern audience. She is a regular on the Fringe theatre circuit with her one-woman storytelling shows. She uses music in all her work and desperately misses performing herself and the buzz of watching others perform. Twitter @CathianneX Insta @CathianneX FB Cathianne/Writer Dixiebird Records is a boutique Jazz, Swing and Rythm & Blues agency come mini record label. They design, produce and represent a range of luxe stylised acts for events in the UK and beyond.

  • Top 5 Jazz & Swing Inspired Books You’ll Love!

    Jazz and blues music has been stealing our hearts since the early 1920s and we are loving every minute of it. The rich tapestry of Ellington's orchestra, combined with the Trumpet growls of Armstrong and all the backstage showbusiness combined, it is no wonder that we daydream about the dazzling ‘Jazz Age’. However, was it really that fabulous and charming as we think it was? We will let you be the judge of that with a little help of jazz-inspired fiction. The cheapest and easiest way to travel without actually having to leave the comfort of your home. Now, get comfy with your favourite drink and let’s get started. Last Night at the Blue Angel by Rebecca Rotert The book is set in the early 1960s Chicago, a time when jazz was blooming but so did the tensions of the Cold War. We will follow a story of Naomi Hill, a struggling singer at the Blue Angel club, her 10-year-old daughter Sophia, and photographer Jim who is desperately in love with Naomi. Told from various of view, every chapter you read will feel like solving a puzzle. One might presume that it is a typical romance novel but it is everything but that. There is the love of the music world and the lure of fortune and fame; the love for family; and the opposite of romance revealed in the world of other characters. Taking you through the streets of Chicago, while imagining the magnificent old buildings depicted by Jim, you will want to visit it when this pandemic is over. Not only will you get to know and love the characters but you will learn to sympathize with each and every one of them. Prepare yourself for a dynamic night of glam and drama. The Axeman's Jazz by Ray Celestin Ready to travel back to New Orleans in 1919 and solve a mystery? We sure are! Based on a true story, the book follows the enigmatic “New Orleans Axeman” and people who are trying to discover his identity. It all starts when a journalist named John Riley receives an unusual letter which he suspects is coming from the killer. In the letter, the Axeman says he will be in the city soon and he is setting a challenge for its citizens - play jazz or be the next victim. Then we go back to months before when the murders started happening. What makes this story so appealing to the readers is that various point of view aspect. We have a journalist, detective, mafia members, a female lead and none other than the great Louis Armstrong. Each of them has a unique story and a secret reason why they are trying to solve this puzzling case. We recommend getting the sequel Dead Man's Blues as you will get so immersed in the story that you won’t be able to stop reading. Just as you think you figured something out the book will remind you that the story isn’t over yet. Young Man with a Horn by Dorothy Baker Young Man with a Horn is widely considered the first jazz novel, as it magnificently depicts the music and atmosphere which defined that time. Baker’s book was inspired by the artistry of legendary Bix Beiderbecke, and it was also adapted into a movie starring Doris Day, Kirk Douglas and more (however, be sure to read the book first 😉). The story centres around an underaged white boy Rick Martin and his passion for brass and all that jazz. Although a child he got a chance to perform in a band at the Cotton Club. We will read about his poor childhood in 1910 and how he ended up playing in one of the most prestigious night clubs in New York. An amazing story that follows the dreams and pitfalls which we can sympathize but most importantly the main focus is on the music and the development of jazz in the roaring twenties. We recommend reading this with fine jazz in the background to get the complete feel of it all. Girl Singer by Mick Carlon Love Billie Holiday, Ella Fitzgerald, Count Basie and all those amazing legends? Then this book will blow you away! Imagine this, Harlem in 1938, a young aspiring black, Avery, singer gets recognised by Count Basie’s saxophonist Lester "Pres" Young. He was so amazed by her that he recommended her to Basie and Avery is only 18 years old gets a chance to become a lead singer in the Count Basie Orchestra. The book will show you the difficulties and glam of living the jazz life. It will feel like receiving a musical education and the major is jazz. Not only will you read about the songs that Carlon writes about but you’ll feel compelled to listen to them as you read. Also, this book gives you a glimpse of the racism during that time and it shows how black people handled attitudes of prejudice with courage in the early 20s. Fun fact -‘The Count Basie Orchestra’ performed for everyone of any race anywhere despite that it was forbidden to perform for black audiences at times. Tales of the Jazz Age by F. Scott Fitzgerald Naturally, the list wouldn’t be complete if it didn’t contain at least one of Scott Fitzgerald’s books. This time we will shine the light on the incredible compilation of short stories dedicated to the ‘Jazz Age’. It contains eleven stories: "The Jelly-Bean" "The Camel's Back" "May Day" "Porcelain and Pink" "The Diamond as Big as the Ritz "The Curious Case of Benjamin Button" "Tarquin of Cheapside" "Oh, Russet Witch!" "The Lees of Happiness" "Mr Icky" "Jemina" Interestingly enough the recurring theme among all of them is the harsh reality of the Roaring Twenties - wasted privilege, youth, lives, and that the glitter and glam you think exists is, in fact, symbolic & brittle. Delightfully tragic. No one captures the magic of this period better than F. Scott Fitzgerald. Wait, the list is not over yet! We have one more amazing book recommendation: BONUS BOOK High Times, Hard Times by Anita O'Day, George Eells I know, I know, we promised fiction but we couldn’t resist adding this fabulous travelogue of Anita O’ Day. She will take you through the jazz world. A world filled with incredibly depicted images of Roy Eldridge, Gene Krupa, Billie Holiday and Stan Kenton. She is telling it like it was, a no-nonsense narrative from one of the best to grace the Jazz stage. You know what they say a great jazz singer tells git like no other. Let us know if you think that’s true in the comments below! Dixiebird Records are a London based, live and recorded entertainment agency. Producing and supplying vintage theatrical bands for the private and corporate events industry.

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  • Sax For Hire | Dixiebird Records

    Hire a solo saxophonist for your event Sax hire never came smoother than this. ​ We have done all the hard work, so you dont have to. Give us your brief and we can tailor your saxophonist for your perfect event! Our highly trained, versatile saxophonists are consummate pro's. We have the very best in the industry of female and make solo saxophonists who play a range of music such as pop, jazz, swing, rock n roll, jive, big band and blues. ​ Hire a saxophonist for your wedding ceremony, wedding reception, your engagement party, NYE party and so much more. Enquire today! Our amazing saxophonists for hire have various specialities, so just send us your brief and we can tailor it to you based on your own unique event or wedding. ​ Soprano Sax Alto Sax Tenor Sax Baritone Sax ​ Can play to backing tracks, with a DJ or we can even out together a sax quartet for you! (How about that!) ​ ​ 🎷"Professional and friendly service from start to finish I would highly recommend! The sax player was amazing we’ve received so many compliments from guests at our party. Can’t thank you enough Kerri and Madhu!" Chanice Alcock - NYE Party, Hertfordshire Enquire today! whats the next step? Hire a saxophone player for your wedding, special event or birthday to play with backing tracks or a DJ. ​ PA system can be provided. Free travel up to 50 miles outside of London. Setlist and requests available - please ask! Bolt-ons such. asDJ, Ibiza Sax show, Singer or other saxophonists (to create a quartet) are available. ​ We specialise in a range of genres and costumes, evening dress, black tie, relaxed and elegant, chic and classy or vintage, pin-up style, just give us your brief. Book this act! Get in touch! - 0207-1297-582

  • Dixie & The Dukes | Dixiebird Records

    Vintage RnB, Jazz & Blues Band, for hire Dixie & The Dukes are the ultimate, Vintage, RocknRoll, Blues, Rockabilly, Retro Swing & Postmodern Jukebox inspired band for your party or event. ​ London based but can travel at request, this 5 piece band consisting of the vocals of internationally renowned pop and soul vocalist, Daiva, Ex Mint Royale guitarist, Chris Thorn and some of Londons best jazz session musicians who between them have featured on Radio 4, played at Ronnie Scotts and more. ​ The style, sound and theme of the band is authentic for that era and will get people Jivin, Strollin & Boppin like its 1952 again! Delivering 40’s & 50’s classics by the likes of Ruth Brown, Varetta Dillard, Etta James, Wanda Jackson, Little Richard to contemporary hits by Imelda May, Stray Cats performed in a Postmodern Jukebox style! ​ ​ Enquire today! 🎸"Dixie & The Dukes were a huge success and the feedback that poured in on their performance was great. Thanks for being wonderful to work with.”Kelly O'Neill, Director of Sales, Strand Palace Hotel (Corporate event) 10/10 🎸"You guys were great both in performance and to deal with. I particularly appreciate you coming to view the space a few months ago. I have put you on my recommended suppliers list and will definitely tell other couples about you.” Nicola Harris (Event Organiser Chiswell Street Dining Rooms) (Private event) 10/10 🎸"We hired Dixie & the Dukes to play at our wedding in September and they were amazing. They put on a great show, adding our first dance into their setlist and contributed to a great evening atmosphere at the wedding. We know that our guests really enjoyed their performance and some have already recommended them to others." Dan and Hannah Daniel Aylott (Wedding ) 10/10 Enquire today! These guys can perform as the following: ​ DUO ​ QUARTET ​ QUINTET ​ With bolt-ons such as DJ options, Wedding packages, Ceremony music and more. ​ Playing any combo of 3 X 30 mins / 3 X 40 mins / 2 X 45 mins / 1 x 90 mins - whatever works for you! whats the next step? Take a browse of the example setlist here, dont see what you like? No probs! The band can learn up to one special request for your event, no worries! ​ King of the S wingers- J ungle B ook Dance with me Henry – Etta James Tainted Love – Imelda May Moose on the Loose – Roddy Jackson Baby Just Cares For Me – Nina Simone Love me Right - LaVern Baker Please Mr Jailer – Rachael Sweet I don’t know – Ruth Brown Funnel of Love – Wanda Jackson Fever – Peggy Lee Easy Easy Baby – Varetta Dillard Whipper Snapper – LaVern Baker I’m Shakin’ – Little Willie John Shaking All Over- Jonny kid and the pirates Miserlou- dick dale Feeling Good – Nina Simone The Lovecats – The Cure Hound Dog- Big Mama Thornton Slippin’ and Slidin’ – Little Richard Tiny Tim – LaVern Baker Voodoo Woman – Koko Taylor As Long as I’m Moving – Ruth Brown Fujiyama Mama – Wanda Jackson Scorched – Varetta Dillard Hit the road jack Nosey Joe – Bull Moose Jackson Whipper Snapper – LaVern Baker Rock this Town – Stray Cats Rip it Up – Little Richard Rock around the clock- Bill Hayley and the Comets I just wanna make love to you- Etta James ​ Dixie & The Dukes can perform a number of sets at your event and can offer packages for wedding bookings, ceremony music and dancefloor fillers for the after-party. ​ ​ Book this act! Get in touch! - 0207-1297-582

  • 1920's Jazz Trio | Dixiebird Records

    Hire a 1920's Jazz Trio for your event Part of our very own house band the 1920's Dixiebird Jazz Trio is perfect for weddings, events and parties that have a 1920's Prohibition theme. Performing all the standards, plus re-worked modern Postmodern Jukebox inspired songs, this trio takes you back to the good old days of the Prohibition era. ​ Razzle dazzle meets ragtime, cakewalk, blues, swing and that crazy new devil's music - jazz, providing a perfect soundtrack to your gin sipping guests. ​ Piano, vocals and sax/clarinet create a classy and stylish upbeat backdrop for any event that requires a bit of sass and transporting back to times where debauchery happened strictly, behind closed doors. Enquire today! Consisting of a female vocalist, either a flapper female or a dapper gentleman saxophonist and clarinet player and a pianist, this trio is made up of musicians from our own bands in house, who have played for BBC, Soho Radio, Bollinger Champagne, Hideaway Club, Ronnie Scotts and more. ​ With costumes provided by our partners Collectif Clothing, this is an authentic trio who dress as good as they play. 🍸"Kerri & the team did an amazing job organising an event for us that was on point, on the theme (1920's Christmas) and packed full of entertainment! I would highly recommend her!" Searceys, 30 Pavillion Road ​ 🍸"A Million Dollars at any Years Prices!" The Stage, Reviews Enquire today! whats the next step? Available as a trio for Weddings Receptions, Ceremonies, Galas, Bars and Restaurants, Hotels and Festivals. ​ 2 X 45 mins or 3 X 30 mins sets as standard, with music, played between sets. ​ Various packages are available & our band can learn new songs at your request, we offer one new song free with each booking and charge £30 per song after this. ​ Standard 1920's Set List: ​ The Stuff Is Here Careless Whisper Empty Bed Blues Dream A Dream At Last Just A Gigalo That Ol Devil Called Love ​ Book this act! Get in touch! - 0207-1297-582

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