Scottie Thompson @JazznewbloodALIVE2021 @EFGLJF @WoolwichWorks
Next, pianist Scottie Thompson on our interview series.
Scottie please tell us about growing up in Portsmouth. How did you start playing the piano?
I started playing piano when I was about eleven and learnt by ear, working out the chords to my favourite songs. I eventually started classical lessons, which were an essential part of my development of technique and the fundamentals of the piano. I didn’t discover jazz properly until I was in sixth form.
Was there a moment or a musician who inspire you to follow a career in Music?
I don’t think there was any specific moment or musician; my love and fascination of music grew throughout secondary school and when I decided that a career in music was something I wanted to pursue, I was lucky enough to have very supportive teachers who helped guide me in the right direction.
You studied 2 years at Junior Jazz Guildhall before entering Royal Academy of Music.
What influenced your choice to go for RAM?
I went to one of the open days at RAM in the term before auditions, where I watched a sample repertoire class and big band rehearsal. I was incredibly impressed with how clearly everything was taught, as well as the playing standard of the students.
What inspires you to compose new music?
I am a big procrastinator, so having a deadline often helps! I like working to a brief or to give myself limitations, as a completely blank canvas can be daunting at times. Going to gigs and listening to music I love is probably my biggest inspiration for composing.
What are you listening to at the moment?
Recently I’ve been getting into singer songwriters such as Nick Drake and Adrianne Lenker.
I’m also listening to lots of Bud Powell, who is one of my all-time favourite pianists.
Tell us about your set at our JazznewbloodALIVE Showcase.
My set will be a combination of my own tunes and some of Morgan Wallace’s compositions, who will be playing with me. The tunes of mine were written last year for the Jazznewblood livestream, but I am looking forward to performing them in the context of a real life gig!
It will feature Finn Genockey on drums and Lorenzo Morabito on bass.