ACKER BILK and his PARAMOUNT JAZZ BAND
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Taken at the Arts Club in Dover St. London in August 2008. Acker and the band played at the birthday party for Patrick Gwynn-Jones MBE who illustrated a book on Acker in the 1960's.
Acker and Van Morrssion backstage at Rochester Castle - Summer 2006
Clare Sweeney giving Acker his Bowler hat on Board the Queen Mary II - 2006
A recent caricature of Acker drawn by Di Lorriman
After over 60 odd years of performing his music all over the world it was with great sadness that Acker Bilk decided to hang up his boots and retire from public performing in early 2014.
It was not an easy decision for Acker. His health has caught up with him and he was not as strong as he used to be, but at the grand age of 85 I thought he had done his bit for music and jazz that he loved so very much.
Acker had not played in public since the Brecon Festival in August 2013, where he received standing ovations from a packed house both before and after the concert - a fitting finale to a great career. His last Paramount Jazz Band, which Acker said was one of the best bands he ever had, filled in contracted gigs such as Dresden, Nottingham, Colchester and the famous jazz location The Stables at Wavendon. all to great acclaim.
Their final date was on Thursday 12th June which was a tribute to all Acker's music and Acker hoped his many fans would attend that special concert and listen to his excellent musicians: Colin Wood on piano and Richie Bryant on drums, both whom had been with Acker over 35 years, Enrico Tomasso on trumpet and Ian Bateman on trombone, who both joined Acker around 2002, and the baby of the band John Day on double bass. who joined in 2006.
They were joined on stage by clarinettist David Horniblow, ex Chris Barber Band.
To see more of Acker's achievements over the years. please go to Acker's biog page at http://www.ackersmusicagency.co.uk/biography.htm
Lastly, on retirement, Acker wished to thank his loyal fans all over the world for their support and love during his long and eventful career.
Pamela Frances Sutton, Personal Manager to Mr.Acker Bilk MBE.
To see Acker's 2009-2013 dates, click here
Acker Bilk 2004
Mr Acker Bilk MBE at his investiture by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II for his services to music at Buckingham Palace - March 2001.
Ken and Ack at Barnstaple in May with mascot 'Lottie' raising awareness for 'Hospice Lottery - making a difference in Devon'
Acker and the late Humphrey Lyttelton having fun at the 2006 Edinburgh festival with Jo Fooks
Left: The current line-up (Back Row L-R): Colin Wood Piano, John Day Bass, Ian Bateman Trombone, (Front Row L-R): Enrico Tomasso Trumpet, Acker Bilk Clarinet, Richie Bryant Drums.
Right: Acker receiving his Lifetime Achievement Award at the Parliamentary Jazz Awards, 2012
Photo courtesy of PPL & Photographer Hayley Madden
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