Phil, who was until 2014 the lead alto for NYJO, is fast emerging as one of the UK’s most creative young jazz musicians. Wanting to play saxophone after seeing Lisa Simpson duet with Bleeding Gums Murphy, it was at the age of 12 that Phil knew exactly what he wanted to spend his life doing. He performs with the self-titled Phil Meadows Group, whose acclaimed Engines of Creation debut album was toured throughout the UK.
A winner of the prestigious Peter Whittingham Jazz Award, as well as Jazz Newcomer Of The Year at the Parliamentary Jazz Awards, Phil is also the musical and artistic director of the brand new twenty-piece Engines Orchestra, which has recorded and released Lifecycles, a suite of original music, in collaboration with the Phil Meadows Group, on Boom Better Records. This ambitious project is set to see Phil working with musicians of all genres and developing new music with a cross section of artists over the coming years.
In his career so far he has been welcomed onto some of Europe’s most respected jazz platforms, including the Bimhuis in Amsterdam, where he was not only the youngest but also the only Briton and only saxophonist in the final of the European Keep an Eye on Jazz Soloist competition.
He has also performed at the BBC Proms, Glastonbury Festival, Ronnie Scott’s, Bridgewater Hall and the Sage in Gateshead. In February 2012 Phil was also invited to perform for Her Majesty the Queen as part of the Golden Jubilee celebrations.
Phil is also one of Musical Directors at NYJO, running the weekly rehearsals for the organisation’s improvisation ensemble NYJO London. He is also an avid writer whose words can be read in Hot House, a regular feature for JazzUK magazine, giving exposure to the increasingly talented new wave of British jazz music.
Phil studied at Manchester’s internationally renowned Chetham’s School of Music before moving on to study jazz at Leeds College of Music, where he graduated with a first class honours and was awarded the George Murphy Prize for Saxophone. Phil was then offered a place on the Arches Scholarship to study jazz at postgraduate level at Trinity Laban, motivating a move to the capital to complete his Master’s degree in 2012.
Phil grew up on the diverse Manchester and Leeds jazz scenes that have nurtured Beats and Pieces, Roller Trio, GoGo Penguin and LIMA (the Leeds Improvised Music Association). His love of original music is heard through his own writing, influenced by Dave Binney, John Hollenbeck and Tigran Hamasyan, which fuses his passion for the ambient, electronica label NinjaTune and European jazz masters ECM.
Phil has had the opportunity to work alongside some of his favourite musicians including Tim Garland, Jason Yarde, Soweto Kinch, Jacqui Dankworth and the Cinematic Orchestra’s Stuart McCallum and Luke Flowers.