Travellin’ Light

Tony Bevan
Answers 20 Questions About Life on the Road


Tony Bevan                                                                                                           ©Courtesy of Tony Bevan

Tony Bevan is an Oxford-based saxophonist. As a teenager, Bevan received initial instruction on the soprano from Lol Coxhill. Early activities with the London Musicians Collective provided early contact with Steve Beresford, John Russell and others. Settling in Oxford, Bevan worked with Pat Thomas and with Pete McPhail and George Haslam in The Four Corners saxophone ensemble. Inclusion in the 1988 edition of Company led to the release of Bevan’s first albums on Incus, including the Prize-nominated Bigshots with Paul Rogers and Steve Noble. Bevan added the bass saxophone to his arsenal in the ‘90s, a horn he not only brought to improvised music gigs but also to Beresford’s cartoon soundtracks and the thrash/funk of Noyz'r'us.

Bevan launched his Foghorn label in 1998, which released his later work with Derek Bailey, and albums by working bands like Bruise and Tony-Joe Bucklash (with Joe Morris, Tony Buck and Dominic Lash). For nearly a decade, Bevan and John Edwards have been 2/3s of Sunny Murray’s trio, releasing four Foghorn CDs. Foghorn’s newest number is by The Nham Quartet with Edwards, Jeb Bishop and Michael Zerang. Currently, Bevan is preparing for solo bass saxophone gigs and the debut of a new group with Edwards, Trevor Watts and Eddie Prévost. Tony-Joe Bucklash will tour the UK in Spring ’13. For more information about Tony Bevan, consult: www.foghornrecords.co.uk

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What is the most difficult airline to deal with in terms of instruments and equipment?

I’ve always found Air France to be both rude and incompetent – but then I travel with a bass saxophone, so every trip is a potential nightmare.


Which airline has the worst economy seating and food?

I’ve managed to avoid Ryanair, but I’m told they’ve set the bar pretty high for everyone else.


Which airport is craziest for making connecting flights?

Lisbon.


What is the most important thing you ever forgot to pack?

The $250 that I needed to get my Bass Sax fixed in San Francisco, after Air France smashed it up - IT WAS IN A FLIGHT CASE.


What is your worst lost baggage story?

Coming back on the same trip, they lost the saxophone somewhere in Orly. I got it back 2 days later, and had to spend £200 to get both the saxophone AND the case fixed.


What country hassles musicians the most at customs and passport checks?

The U.S., obviously – even when you’re leaving …


Which city has the worst cab drivers?

Hmmm…Brussels is pretty bad.


What is the best hotel that a presenter has provided for you?

The Adina in Berlin.


Do you travel with a laptop or a PDA? If so, how many times a day do you check your e-mail?

Nope.


Do you listen to music on the road? If so, what device do you use?

IPOD. I need better headphones though.


Do you do your own laundry on the road?

Sometimes – I am nothing if not resourceful.


What is your most nightmarish sound check to date?

At St. Dominic’s Working Men’s Club in Newcastle.


What is the scariest food that has been laid out for you backstage?

Anything in Scotland.


What are your three favorite venues?

HBC in Berlin, Archiduc in Brussels, Jazzroom Barcelona.


Which cities have the best restaurants for late after-gig meals?

Lisbon and Barcelona.


Which cities have the best after-hours sessions?

Drinking or music?


What is the best city that closes down too early?

London, probably.


What is the best locale to have a day off?

Too many to mention really.


What is your cure for jet lag?  

Wine.


What is your best tip for the novice?

Ask yourself if it’s worth it.

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