I began my Cheltenham Jazz Festival 2019 experience with some sounds from composer, keyboardist, multi-instrumentalist Alfa Mist.
The young producer from Newham, London has been about since his debut album in 2015. He kicked off his tour Cheltenham Jazz Festival 2019 with his presence as he switched between acoustic and electric piano playing along with his four piece band.
Having began with hip hop before teaching himself piano and transitioning more into jazz, Alfa Mist has now released his third album, Structuralism. We were treated to a set of new and old material in the Jazz Arena at the festival site.
Alfa Mist cool clear rhythms and calm modern vibe creates for a serene and relaxing atmosphere. His music is easy listening, perfect for a relaxed evening. I mean this in the nicest possible way, but it is perfect background music.
Drums and keys make for a steady beat for horn and guitar to melt over the top. Hip hop and soul blended with melodic jazz creates a delicious product. The five musicians on stage responded to each other so well, with each solo as good as the last.
We were also treated to some rap from Alfa who pleased the audience with his quick wit and quicker rhymes. Retainer was my favourite song of the set, chill and catchy yet free flowing with a relaxed and improvised feel to the solos.
Despite being relatively new to the music scene Alfa Mist feels experienced, fresh and definitely one to watch.