The Rolling Calf is a Black power trio featuring vocalist Elaine Mitchener, saxophonist Jason Yarde and bassist Neil Charles. The Rolling Calf performances combine texts by revolutionary African-Diasporic thinkers with collective electroacoustic improvisation to strike a new bridgehead for the Black British avant-garde.
Elaine Mitchener is an experimental and contemporary music vocalist, movement artist and composer whose work encompasses improvisation, contemporary music theatre and performance art. Recent performances and forthcoming projects include b r e a d t h b r e a t h (LCMF, 2018), the then + the now = now time (Maerzmusik, Berlin, 2019), Jeanne Lee Project (Kings Place, London, June 2019), Vocal Classics of the Black Avant-Garde (Meteo Festival, Mulhouse, August and London Jazz Festival, November 2019) and Charles Mingus’ String Quartet No.1 (for strings and voice) with ensemble Apartment House (Totally Thames Bascule Chamber Concerts, September 2019).
Neil Charles is a classically trained double bassist, electronic music producer and composer (BenMarc Music). He performs, records and tours with numerous jazz, classical and contemporary music groups and ensembles including Sun Ra Arkestra, Alexander Hawkins, Mingus Big Band, Pulled By Magnets (with Seb Roachford and Pete Wareham), Charles-Mitchener duo (with Elaine Mitchener), The Rolling Calf (with Mitchener and Jason Yarde), and has played with Terence Blanchard, Black Top, Shabaka Hutchings, Anthony Braxton and China Moses.
Jason Yarde is a saxophonist who has been a member of Louis Moholo-Moholo’s groups for three decades. He is one of the most sought-after musicians of his generation, and has been a member of groups led by Andrew Hill and Jack DeJohnette and has worked with Hugh Masekela, among many others. He is also a renowned arranger, producer and composer, having been widely commissioned, including by the London Symphony Orchestra. His Windrush Suite was premiered at the 2018 London Jazz Festival.