Projet Brassens Quartet

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    last update 24.1.06

    Formed in 1997 to bring the songs and inspiration of Georges Brassens particularly to English-speaking audiences.

    The band has played to varied audiences in England and France: at arts centres, theatres, jazz clubs and festivals, village halls, churches, universities, schools, public parks, pubs, hotels and restaurants, and even hospitals.

    Projet Brassens Quartet have released two CDs, La marine (2000) and Le vent (2003), well reviewed and played on radio in England, France, Austria, the USA. Canada and Mauritius.

    mp3 soundclip of Projet Brassens Quartet performing Un boeuf sur le quai, an original English song. Recorded live 2004.

    Projet Brassens Quartet


    "The voice of Maxine Green is superbly accompanied by the guitars, bass, clarinet and saxophone of the Quartet...Joan of Arc would have liked these English people very much..." Auprès de son Arbre

    "Without doubt Father Georges would be the first to be astounded...the surprise is constant, the pleasure renewed."
    Chorus, les cahiers de la chanson

    "The musicians' aim is to overcome barriers (to understanding and appreciation) by reinterpreting (Brassens') songs in modern idiom and conveying something of the irreverent wit, deep humanity and perceptive social comment through their musical arrangements. Green's sensitive vocals capture the mood as it swings from tender to light-hearted or satirical..."
    Times Educational Supplement

    "The combination of sublime clarinet and saxophone playing from Charlie Hearnshaw and delightful vocals from Maxine Green, who sings with a wonderfully light, yet seductive touch..." Western Daily Press

    "Sexy, soulful, rhythmic, funny - a stirring example of how music can transcend language barriers."
    North Devon Journal

    "The arrangements - jazz - lack neither personality nor diversity...first class musicians! You must hear the way they make tonton Georges' songs swing... In brief, a real delight." Joseph Moalic 'Les Amis de Georges'

    "If this group's CD has seduced more than one person, attending their concert provided one of the best moments of this week at Vaison." Patrick Clemence, the journal Les amis de Georges, Paris

    "...we can only confirm the pleasure brought to us by these interpretations of Brassens' songs with very jazzy accompaniments. Interpretations at the same time original and faithful to the spirit of their author which show, if it were at all necessary, that both text and music are at the heart of Brassens." Chant'Essonne

    "These are really wonderful interpretations which offer perhaps the most original reformulation of Georges Brassens' music that anyone has ever produced." William Hinshaw, Georges Brassens American Fan Club

    "....simultaneously a wonderful introduction to Brassens and a wonderful re-thinking of his work. It is certainly cheeky for a group from Devon to take on France's foremost chansonnier in this manner. Yet Projet Brassens argues that it is bringing Brassens' songs to a wider audience--as indeed it is. But, even more than that, the group is bringing a new consciousness to Brassens' work--a consciousness which illuminates the songs even as it affirms their deepest traditions. Projet Brassens does to Georges Brassens' work what all good jazz does to its material: it treats it with respect, but it also makes it new." Jack Foley, The Alsop Review, U.S.A.




    MAXINE GREEN vocals and guitar.
    Born in London to a family of jazz musicians, Maxine is a multi-lingual performer whose repertoire includes Latin jazz (sung in Portuguese) as well as French chansons, original songs and jazz standards.

    Maxine loved Georges Brassens' chansons when she first heard them over 15 years ago, and began including them within jazz gigs in England and France. In 1997 she formed Projet Brassens Quartet with Charlie Hearnshaw to showcase Brassens' songs and try to develop his legacy creatively.

    Maxine Green's press-book
    "The English singer Maxine Green records her Brassens in French...The slight accent which made the success of Jane Birkin, and before her of Petula Clark, isn't Maxine's only charm. In the lively tone of her style, one can rediscover the mischievous smile of the Master of these words."
    Chorus - les cahiers de la chanson, France

    .. these songs are sung by Maxine Green with a charm...and a talent which must be underlined. I think back to her interpretation of have to take your hat off to this." Les Amis de Georges, France



    Maxine Green


    CHARLIE HEARNSHAW clarinet, basset clarinet, alto sax.
    Born in Birmingham, studied classical clarinet, composition and conducting at Dartington College of Arts and in Paris. Charlie has toured all over Europe, recorded and broadcast with many top jazz musicians from Britain and the USA, including Don Weller, Pete Jacobsen, Andy Sheppard, Don Rendell, Kathy Stobart, Alan Barnes, ex-Coltrane drummer Clifford Jarvis, Jimmy Witherspoon, and the late great Slim Gaillard.

    In 1981 he formed the Charlie Hearnshaw Quartet as a vehicle for composition and improvisation in the modern jazz field. His musical influences included Tony Coe, Sonny Cris, Joe Henderson and Polish saxophonist Zbigniev Namyslowski. In 1990 the Quartet's debut album So Slam It! received considerable acclaim, including a place in the Guardian's critics' poll for that year.

    Charlie's interest in classical music, particularly the music of Bach, led to him publishing editions of Bach for solo saxophones and solo clarinet.

    In recent years Charlie has developed what he describes as "music for listening", a focussed, uncluttered acoustic sound. In live concert performance he is known for his easy rapport with audiences, and his ability to enthuse existing jazz fans whilst also making his music accessible and enjoyable for wider audiences.

    Charlie has also ventured into other styles of music, writing new arrangements of songs by French "master" Georges Brassens for Projet Brassens, and gaining a cult following after recordings with The Rurals on the Pêng label.

    Charlie combines the focus and purity of classical clarinet tone with the freedom of expression of improvisation. He is widely recognised as one of the UK's leading exponents of clarinet and alto sax.

    More details of Charlie's recent work at
    Shelly Studios CDs.



    Charlie Hearnshaw

    Charlie Hearnshaw's press-book

    "Virile and reflective chamber jazz."
    The Times

    "A light and delicate approach to be-bop which also emcompasses latin-american and World music to panoramic effect."
    Time Out, London

    "....and there is a kind of joy which communicates itself to the listener....this is the kind of music which gives me the most pleasure." Alun Morgan, jazz critic

    Mike Thorn
    Mike Thorn double bass
    Born in Cornwall, he toured the world for several years with Charles Aznavour before returning to England to play for the London West End theatre. More recently he has established himself as a mainstay of the South West's lively jazz scene.
    Andrew Barrett guitar
    A versatile musician who has toured all over Europe and performed before Her Majesty The Queen. He spent summer 1999 playing on the QE2 and at one of New York's premier jazz venues, The Red Blazer Club.
    Andrew Barrett

    links in english
    Projet Brassens' front page
    Projet Brassens' homepage...o0o...Georges Brassens...o0o...Projet Brassens Quartet
    CDs & mp3s ...o0o...Lyrics and translations...o0o...Scores
    Giglist...o0o...Book a band...o0o...Photo gallery
    Projet Brassens needs you!...o0o...Sponsor Projet Brassens

    liens en français
    La une du Projet Brassens
    Projet Brassens' page d'accueil...o0o...Georges Brassens...o0o...Projet Brassens Quartette
    Projet Brassens' disque de début...o0o...Textes et traductions...o0o...Partitions
    Disques et mp3s...o0o...Activités éducatives...o0o...Photo galerie
    Le Projet Brassens a besoin de vous!...o0o...Parrainez le Projet Brassens

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