Heads Up

Olly Sarkar Quartet + Eliza Oakes

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Last Show: Wednesday 1 st March 2023

PizzaExpress Jazz Club (Soho)

Heads Up is back tonight with two exciting musicians who are taking the London jazz scene by storm; Olly Sarkar Quintet and Eliza Oakes! Expect a blend of soul, jazz, hip-hop and electronic music mixed with excellent improvisation and beautiful melodies.



Olly Sarkar

Olly Sarkar is a London-based drummer, composer & educator who has a love for jazz, hip-hop and electronic music. He will be performing music from his recent releases ‘Eyes Up’, ‘Ears to the Underground’ and new unreleased compositions which are set to be recorded later this year!

“Olly Sarkar on drums is as good as you would hear on any iconic Jazz master’s Blue Note album from the 50s and 60s and more besides.” As said by Illicit groove. 

Sarkar is creating a sound that blends Jazz fluidity with the crisp unshakable sound worlds of hip-hop, garage and broken beat whilst maintaining a spontaneous approach to groove and musical shape. This is Sarkar's first appearance at Pizza Express Jazz Club as a bandleader despite having played the club many times.

Olly is proudly endorsed by Canopus drums, one of the world's most respected drum companies. 

He has performed with some of the UK’s finest musicians including Cherise Adams-Burnett, Nubya Garcia, Nerija, Seed Ensemble, Reuben James, Chelsea Carmichael, Camilla George, Ruben Fox, Mark Kavuma, Jumoké Fashiola, Tom Barford, Billy Marrows and Alex Hitchcock. 

Sarkar can also be heard on recording with Daniel Casmir & Tess Hirst’s Jazz Re:Freshed release’s These Days(2019) & These Days in These Ways (2020), which features, Robert Mitchell, Tobie Carpenter& Binker Golding. Sarkar Recorded in 2021 release 'What if' by Trumpeter Lily Carassik & was released on Sony Masterworks to raise money for UK based charity The Samaritans. 2022 releases include Flung out of Space by Jess Bullen & The Sorcerer by Franco-American Pianist Tom Sochas.

Sarkar is currently on a European tour with Sax player Chelsea Carmichael and pianist Tom Sochas and is excited to have a hometown show! 

Eliza Oakes

Born and bred south Londoner Eliza Oakes is a vocalist, songwriter and artist armed with her independently released, self-produced debut EP ‘An Intuition’ released in 2021, followed by ‘Live at Big Jelly Studios’ released in 2022. 

Sparking interest from all spectrums of the media such as securing Clash Magazines ‘Track of the day’ with debut single ‘Let It Be Known’, radio play from Soho Radio, Worldwide FM and Hoxton Radio, Eliza has gone on to perform her music regularly in exciting venues across London such as Omeara London, Windmill Brixton, as well as selling out her first EP launch gig at Bermondsey Social Club.  

Combining a wide range of influences along with the eclectic sounds of the city she grew up in, she delivers her own sound with grit, soul and authenticity.  Now supported by PRS’ Women Make Music Fund 2022, truth and originality are at the forefront of her continued exploration of the voice, song-writing and sonic identity.

Band Line Up

Olly Sarkar Quintet:

Olly Sarkar (drums & compositions)
Reiss Beckles (alto sax)
Tobie Carpenter (guitar)
Billy Marrows (guitar)
Jack Polley (bass)

Eliza Oakes:

Eliza Oakes (vocals)
Lorenz Okello (piano)
Hugo Piper (bass)
Tom Potter (drums)
Elsa Hackett (backing vocals)
Lois Graham (backing vocals)