Jazz Harpist, Music out on Jazzman Records, Albert’s Favourites, First Word
In 2020 Amanda was signed to the iconic Jazzman Records Label, which released a 10″ EP Little Sunflower.*
Then in April 2021 Jazzman released her self-penned album After Dark with her jazz trio Aidan Thorne (bass) and Jon Reynolds (drums) featuring Chip Wickham on flute and with a remix by Rebecca Vasmant (with vocals by Nadya Albertsson.) The album has been played on BBC Radio 6, Jazz FM, BBC Radio 2 and across the world.
From the success of the sold-out album, Amanda appeared as a guest on Jamie Cullum’s Jazz show with a Take 5 interview, (see instagram below) as well as being nominated in October 2021 for Jazz Fm’s “Instrumentalist of the Year”.
In November 2021, Amanda performed in Mannheim, Germany with Greg Foat, followed by a sold out tour with Chip Wickham (who’s album Blue to Red she features on). With a sold out Saturday night at Ronnie Scott’s, the year ended with WeJazz festival in Helsinki, performing After Dark. What a year!
Her new album Lost in Abstraction (out May 2022) has received “Album of the Week” from Jazz FM, Worldwide FM and PBS Australia.
A little history:
Amanda has always had a love for pop and jazz and after supporting Jamie Cullum in a local charity event (and consequently recording with Dannii Minogue), her new path was set. In 2013 she returned to RWCMD to study a Masters in Jazz studying under eminent teachers Paula Gardiner, Huw Warren, Iain Bellamy, Dave Cliff and Dudley Phillips (amongst many others).
One of the highlights of her career has been performing at International Jazz festivals across the world with Jazz trumpeter Matthew Halsall and the Gondwana Orchestra. Festivals and venues have included Hamburg, Johannesburg Union Chapel London, Jazz Cafe ( Camden), Pori Jazz66 (Finland), Ghent Jazz festival, London Jazz Festival, Gateshead and AB Belgique, Brussels.
In 2020/21/22, Amanda worked and recorded with many artists and DJs including DJ Yoda, Rebecca Vasmant, Mr Scruff, True Jazzchild, Jazzanova, Greg Foat, Heliocentircs and flautist Chip Wickham (realising her dream concert in Ronnie Scott’s.)
July 2022 saw the World Harp Congress arrive in Cardiff where Amanda performed to a concert hall of the harpists from every corner of the planet, as well as giving lectures. In August Amanda will perform with the Rebecca Vasmant ensemble in WeOutHere festival before embarking on a UK and Paris tour in October.
For all festival bookings please contact: JAW Family
*The original trio from Little Sunflower headlined in Edinburgh International Harp Festival as well as playing at Hay and Brecon Festivals.
In 2020 Amanda was given the honour of having her own Harp Column Academy Studio (a global platform for specialist teachers). Amanda is also the Jazz harp teacher at the Royal Welsh College of Music and Drama, Cardiff, Royal Birmingham Conservatoire and Hull University and has taught at RNCM and Junior RNCM. She has also written a series of new Jazz harp books (Under the name of Pedal Sliders) on the syllabus of Trinity College, London.
“Whiting’s harp, full of flowing, cascading notes, similarly couldn’t help draw comparison to Alice Coltrane: the harp is a rare instrument in jazz, and Alice Coltrane one of it’s pioneers. In the Gondwana Orchestra, the instrument was used to great effect, adding another layer of texture.”
In 2010 Amanda performed with the iconic blues harpist Deborah Henson-Conant
“Amanda’s talent, commitment, and above all her willingness to fully involve herself in the process of collaboration, epitomises the power of the composer/performer relationship. She then sat down and poured her heart and soul into the performance. And the audience absolutely loved her.”
Following a damn fine E.P. of covers – an eclectic range of standards penned by folks from Duke Ellington to Cathy Dennis – Welsh harpist Amanda Whiting releases her long-player, After Dark, on Jazzman. Eleven originals and one remix, with arrangements as sophisticated as those of sometime label mate, Greg Foat. Amanda`s record, mastered to Japanese jazz kissa sound quality, actually makes the perfect partner to Foat`s Dark Is The Sun, which incidentally just got a deluxe 20th anniversary repress.
It would be impossible not to cite Dorothy Ashby`s Afro-Harping as a reference. There’s a classic swing to the set`s syncopation and its contrabass runs. The three, occasionally four, musicians involved make music suitable for an intimate fireside evening for two. Full of a romance that cynics would have you believe was dead. Slow dancing while cymbals crash like waves against breakers, a spiritual tide rising, and brushes race like young hearts. Zing go Amanda`s strings, her virtuoso almost flamenco fingers, in duet with Chip Wickham`s footloose flute. Gently woo-ing one another as drum rolls rush, and then return to calm. In closing DJ / producer, On The Corner`s Door To The Cosmos alumni, Rebecca Vashmant, reworks the title track, adding Nadya Albertsson`s sublime, soulful vocals and scat to its midnight blue ache. Significantly enhancing the already exquisite serenity.
Matthew Halsall and the Gondwana Orchestra
Taz Modi (keys), Gavin Barras (bass) and Luke Flowers (drums)
Ronnie Scott’s with Chip Wickham (November 2021)
A bucket list moment on tour with Chip Wickham (flute), Jessica Lauren (keys), Simon Houghton (bass) and Pax Armada (drums).
“Lost” from the new album out May 2022 on Jazzman records
Filmed at Fieldgate Studios: Aidan Thorne (bass) and Jon Reynolds (drums)
Available for International Jazz festivals