London Jam session – report by Busrah Osmanoglu


Connect and Collaborate London’s first jam session happened in June 2013. Below is an article written by journalist Busrah Osmanoglu, who attended the event.

For sound and video, click here for our blog: Connect and Collaborate London’s first jam session

Drake Music connects & collaborates once again bringing talented musicians together into one room for a jam session on June 19th.

Ivan Riches (disabled artist/musician), the host and producer for Drake Music’s Connect & Collaborate London project believes it’s important for disabled musicians to meet on a regular basis, to build networks and an understanding of one another musically. A group of twenty disabled artist/musicians had met previously in March expressing ideas about what they would like to get out of Connect and Collaborate London events, workshops and mentoring in the future and there was a keen interest in making music together.

Nine musicians arrive with their instruments to create a calm and unique environment starting with a friendly introduction of the group members that participate, moving round a circle, each showing the other instruments they have bought along.

Then the music starts to evolve. The sound of the bass and acoustic guitar comes through with a strong presence.

As an observer, it’s easy to see how comfortable the group is with each other. They delve into a musical vibe with riffs from the guitars, accompanied by melodic harmony from the iPad with ‘Thumb Jam’ app, and the beat from African percussion. Drifting from one genre to the next flawlessly.

It was evident Drake Music’s primary objective was achieved in this jam. Musicians were connecting and collaborating with ease. They each took turns to lead indicating a level of respect for each other, listening carefully to what each musician had to offer, while others followed. There were seamless transitions and genre changes within the group. A solid five minutes was dedicated to the chosen genre before moving onto the next.

This is where Drake Music shines. As far as I’m concerned, they are well on their way to accomplishing their goal. When these creative people are in a room their disabilities disappear! What does this mean? It’s not what one is incapable of achieving that matters. Instead, it’s what one is capable of achieving that’s of most importance!

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