Jazz Verse Jukebox with Jumoké Fashola

Friday 24 November 19:30

The eclectic Jazz Verse Jukebox will be live at Hoxton Hall on Friday 24 November for a new season, featuring a stunning line-up of wordsmiths & singers.

Described as ‘the perfect jazz poetry party’ Michael Horovitz, Jazz Verse Jukebox continues the age-old tradition of intertwining jazz improvisation and spoken word. Join us for what promises to be a thrilling night of diverse spoken word & jazz from some of the freshest exponents on the scene. Plus a ‘Jukebox’ Open Mic for poets & singers. Hosted by & with music from broadcaster & vocalist Jumoké Fashola.

The Jazz Verse Jukebox on Friday 24 November features:

Gary Crosby, OBE

Gary Crosby, OBE, is a leading jazz double bassist, music arranger and educator in the UK. He is the Founder and Artistic Director of Tomorrow’s Warriors, a founder member of the original Jazz Warriors, as well as a professional musician, bandleader, composer/arranger, record producer, company director and facilitator. He leads Gary Crosby’s Nu Troop, Gary Crosby Trio, Guava, Jazz Jamaica and Jazz Jamaica All Stars – and has worked with many top international artists.

Gary is the nephew of guitarist Ernest Ranglin, who performed with Jazz Jamaica at Ronnie Scott’s in October 2009 as part of the club’s anniversary concert series.

‘Anyone who claims that an OBE stands for Other Blighters’ Efforts hasn’t met Gary Crosby. Nobody invests more hands-on time in jazz education than the deep-grooving double-bassist honoured in 2009. A musician who leads by example.’  The Evening Standard 

‘Few people have done more for British jazz in the last 25 years than Gary Crosby.’ The Jazz Man


Agnes Meadows 

Anges Meadows is a London-based poet and writer who has toured  nationally and internationally, giving readings, workshops, and residencies all over the world, most recently in Nicaragua.   She was a Guest Poet at the Austin International Poetry Festival for ten consecutive years, twice winning awards for Outstanding Writing, has read three times at the Babylon International Festival of Arts & Culture in Iraq, and most recently was invited to read at the Granada International Poetry Festival in Nicaragua.

Agnes has written five  collections of poetry (Flipped Eye/Waterways), with a sixth coming out soon.  Since 2004 she’s run Loose Muse Women’s Writers Night in London, with regular satellite events elsewhere in England, and has also advised Chanel 4 TV on poetry.

‘Funny, painful, exhilarating….she speaks with many voices.’ Ha’aretz

‘Poetry with its hair down and a wicked glint in its eye.’ Jerusalem Post

Zia Ahmed (@ZiaSighs)

Zia Ahmed is from North-West London. He is a London Laureate, having been shortlisted to be the Young Poet Laureate for London 2015/16. He is a former Roundhouse Slam champion and has appeared at numerous poetry events, including Tongue Fu, Elephant in the Hub and Bang Said The Gun. He was Climate poet in residence for Cape Farewell for 2014/2015 and is a member of the Elephant Collective, a group of writers, poets, rappers, visual artists, producers and storytellers.

Zia was also commissioned by Paines Plough and Tamasha theatre company to write a short play for the national Come to Where I’m From project. Throughout 2017, he is in residence at Paines Plough as a recipient of the Channel 4 Playwrights scheme. A firm believer in justice, he brings a carefully crafted mix of poignant observations and dry humour, underlined with as much heart and truth as it is possible to fit on a stage.

Ranjana Ghatak (@Ranjanaghatak)

London based singer Ranjana Ghatak has worked nationally and internationally as both an artist and composer. She was commissioned by the Commonwealth Games to write a piece for the Big Big Sing Project, led by Stephen Deazley and Eugene Skeef in Glasgow 2014. She is in the process of writing and releasing solo material alongside Liran Donin (member of Mercury Nominated band Led Bib). She  recently recorded on Gareth Malone’s Christmas album, alongside Billy Boothroyd and the Royal Philharmonic Orchestra. Ranjana’s strong passion and curiosity for her musical heritage led her to training with Pandit Ajoy Chakrabarty in 2000. Since then she has continued to enjoy the depths and beauty of this form of singing whilst immersing herself in the life and sounds of contemporary Britain. She recently came back from performing in San Francisco Dance Trolleys Festival with Charlotte Moraga. She was artistic director for a choral piece that she wrote, influenced by Pandit Ravi Shankar’s opera Sukanya. The piece titled New Life was performed in the Clore Ballroom (Southbank Centre) by the Royal Opera House community chorus, BBC Singers and a school group in May 2017.

Her milky tones wash off over in waves like a lubricated lullaby, gently lulling you into a state of semi-hypnosis.’ The Upcoming 

‘A trance-like, soulful incantation of meditative magic.’ Young and Serious Blog


Bella Cox (@BellaCox19)

Bella Cox is an international spoken word performance poet who also works as a vocalist, writer and media creator now based in London. She has performed in and around South Africa since early 2014 and is the current Queen of the Mic of 2016-17 for Word n Sound S.A.  She recently had two of her poems published in the esteemed European Union Sol Plaatje poetry anthology and gave her first TEDx talk and performance on the power of creativity in November 2016. A Slam Champion for the UK’s Hammer & Tongue Power To The People slam, Bella will also be competing for the title of UK Slam Champion at The Royal Albert Hall in January 2018.

She is best known for her passionate, truth-telling, descriptive layering style that she often uses to encourage socio-political change and motivate self-belief. Having lived and performed in Kenya, South Africa, Spain and the UK, Bella’s work is a colourful fusion of art, politics and culture. Bella is bent on making poetry accessible to the youth as a means of self expression, self discovery and growth and since graduating from the University of Pretoria in 2016 she can now be found  working full time in London both on stage and camera writing and performing as often as possible.