Ken Sims 

Photo courtesy Jazz&Jazz video


Photo sent by Rita Jones

Video Published on Apr 13, 2017 by "Rayk jazz"
The funeral of Ken Sims, jazz trumpeter
Parade lead by Grand Marshall Louis Lince.

Bass Drum:: Tim Phillips Tenor: Graham Read
Snares: John Petters Trumpet: Jonathan Graham
Snares: Colin Bowden Trumpet: Chez Chesterman
Sousa: Mike Godwin Trumpet: John Keen
Trombone: Mike Pointon Trumpet: Enrico Tomasso
Clarinet:  John Lawes Trumpet: Allan Bradley
Alto: Max Emmons    

29/03/17 -

Hi Fred

just to inform you that Ken Sims passed away during the night. Will keep you informed of funeral arrangements. Obviously to early as yet for any details. A great loss for all the ones that new him.


Rita Jones

30/03/17 -

My introduction to jazz was in the 60s, listening to the British trad bands and one of the LPs I still treasure (which everyone should have!) is Ackerís recordings of the late 50s:  Gladiolus Rag, Under The Double Eagle, El Abanico, CRE March, Blaze Away etc:  a great band showing how ensemble playing should be, and led by Ken Simsí clean driving cornet playing.  I played 2nd cornet alongside Ken for 5 years in The Blue Magnolia Jass Orchestra until 1973 and learned such a lot from him.  He was an exciting player and a great loss to the jazz world.  Any obituary will not surpass Kenís own extensive, eloquent and dry witted account of his life that appeared in ďJust JazzĒ Magazine, Oct 2004 Ė July 2005 and July Ė August 2013.  He concluded in August with:

ďTo be continued Ė I hope!Ē

Ah well.. RIP Ken.

Jon Critchley

30/03/17 -

Dear Fred, I was very sorry to hear that Ken Sims has left us. I have many very happy memories of the Sunday lunchtime sessions in New Brighton when he was leading the Blue Mags and I was on drums. There was some swinging, that's for sure!

Mike McCombe

30/03/17 -

I am so sad to hear that Ken has passed away. Ken came from my neck of the woods and was sort of responsible for me taking up cornet. Back in the day before he left Merseyside to go and join Cy Laurie in London he played with a band called the Muskrat Jazz band. They had a weekly gig at the Temple on Dale Street, Liverpool.

He first came to my notice when I was watching a local band with a pretty awful trumpet player. There was a bit of a stir and Ken was announced. He sat in and his playing to me sounded to me just a good as the stuff on my 78s. The next day I bought a copy of the Melody Maker from the new stand at Seacombe Ferry and sent away my £12 for a cornet and I was off to the races.

Ken gave me some help and my vibrato owes much to his input. When he left the Muskrats I got his job, but was also forming my own band - The Druids Jazz Band, we had a love affair with the George Lewis climax sessions.

A few years ago I was staying with Malc Murphy and Ken called to have a chat with me. A lovely player and a good Scouser. He will be missed.

Tony Pringle

30/03/17 -

Back in July last year Ken played at Ramsgate Seaside Shuffle Festival. But due to a mix up by the hotel for his overnight stay and subsequent transport problems, he stayed overnight at one of the Festival Organiserís homes and it was my privilege to chauffeur him next morning back to Ramsgate for his journey back to London. Despite the problems, Ken was as patient, charming and kindly as any man Iíve known and shared with me wonderful snippets from his times in Jazz.

Peter Butler

05/04/17 -

I knew Ken Sims well from the start of his jazz career as we met for lunch each day to chat Trad jazz in a cafť in Lower Bridge St. Chester when he was working at a Chester engineering works tho' I cannot now recall exactly how we first met except that everyone knew everyone else in the local jazz scene.

It was he who suggested that the Original Panama Jazz Band at Wallasey , with which he had been playing , was looking for a base player and as I had just lashed out on a BB Sousa I went along to the Roycroft Dance Hall in my Morgan Threewheeler and was accepted and played with them for several years .

John Lindop

16/04/17 - Hi Fred,

Iíve only just heard the sad news about Ken Sims. Although itís forty something years since I last saw him I have fond memories of Ken and his playing.

I remember playing alongside him at the Grand Hotel in New Brighton in the late 60s when he was leading the Blue Mags with John Critchley playing 2nd cornet. At the time I was the trumpet player with the Original Panama Jazz Band. He was without question one of the hottest cornet players around and a great exponent of the art of ensemble playing. He laid down an authoritive but sensitive lead which could push a band along effortlessly. Pretty fine soloist too, although he didnít get much of a chance when he was with Bilk.

He was a big influence on my playing (and Tony Pringleís as he acknowledges in an earlier post) and IĎm sure I still play the odd phrase that had itís origin in Kenís playing. One thing I remember vividly is a session at the Grand when Ken was working up to a high note at the end of a cadenza and he was swearing out the side of his mouth (I was standing alongside him at the time), willing the note to squeeze out. Lovely stuff!

I also remember going to the Liverpool Philharmonic with Ken and our wives to see Duke Ellington. Great times! Rest easy Ken.

John Braben
Trumpet with the Caxton Street Jazz Band
Brisbane, Australia



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