Lullabite by The Brass Monkeys - New CD and digital album release available from and 33JAZZ

'… a continuation of the enduring spirit of jazz and its capacity for continuous reinvention. [It is] a reflection of the timeless allure of jazz, and a beacon of its ever-evolving nature.’ – Ferrell Aubre – the 22/11/23

'There is certainly a nice mix of styles – lilting jazz rhythms one minute, a more military – Elmer Bernstein – feel the next…. I enjoyed the variety and the skill of the playing.’ - John Adcock – 14/12/23

‘… [an] eclectic jewel box of an album … something of a treasure trove of music for the listener – whether that be one who is intrigued by improvised music or seeks comfort and tradition….’ - Sammy Stein – Freejazzblog 4/8/23


28/04/24 - Pizza Express, Soho

Click here for previous gigs


The Brass Monkeys - available for gigs and festivals

"Love this crazy band!" Suzy Edwards - Ashburton Arts Centre, 13/9/21

Contact - or call Ben on +44 7703 403922. The band is based around London, the south east and East Anglia

A brass band unlike any you have heard before The Brass Monkeys are an eclectic improvising wild bunch influenced by jazz, blues, reggae, country, free improvisation, soul, folk …… Performing an exciting mix of original material and unusual classics The Brass Monkeys offer a reverent but iconoclastic take on the history of musical improvisation.

'Really enjoyable show from @8brassmonkeys as part of #camofest last night. I loved the contrast between ensemble polyphony and the sparse drums and tuba backing for featured soloist/duet/trio on material encompassing originals, Monk, Frisell, Nichols folk, klezmer and more.' John Sharpe @JazzSnipe 25/07/21

We have put together a great line-up that embraces an exciting mix of youth and experience.

Live at Cafe Oto 28/8/22, photo Monika S Jakubowska

The Brass Monkeys are:

Trumpets/flugels - Chris Dowding (Natural Causes, Rude 2.0)
Charlotte Keeffe (Space Painters, The Anthropology Band)

French horn - Jim Rattigan (Pavillon, Haden/Bley Liberation Music Orchestra)

Trombones- Annie Whitehead (Rude 2.0, Penguin Café Orchestra)
Kieran McLeod (New World, Julian Argüelles Septet)

Saxes/clarinets - Paul Jolly (The People Band, Loverly)

Tuba/leader - Ben Higham (Monk Inc., Arthur, Loverly)

Drums - Olly Blackman (Hackney Colliery Band, Quadracerotops)

Click here for more band photos

Live at Pizza Express, Soho 18/01/20

"Me and my dad absolutely loved seeing The Brass Monkeys last night!" Hannah R (on Tripadvisor) 19/01/20

The repertoire is half original and a range of material from all kinds of sources including tunes by Herbie Nicols, Bill Frisell, Lillian Hardin-Armstrong, Archie Shepp, Jonas Gwangwa, Lester Bowie, Taj Mahal, Thelonious Monk, Dudu Pukwana……… The key element in all our music is the opportunity for interplay between the musicians which is at the organic heart of this band. This is achieved in part by a combination of improvising contexts; solos, duos, trios and full ensemble interactions stimulate the essential spontaneity. Basically, we are all ears.

Over the years ensemble members have worked with (to name a few) Joan Armatrading, Lianne Carroll, Elvis Costello, Julia Doyle, Joe Gallivan, Joe Jackson, Chris MacGregor's Brotherhood of Breath, Louis Moholo Moholo, Laura Mvula, Maggie Nicols, Natural Causes, Courtney Pine, Dudu Pukwana, The People Band, John Russell, Paul Rutherford, John Stevens, The Style Council, Keith Tippett, Jah Wobble, Robert Wyatt….

A shout out to Dave Amis whose beautiful trombone tones and lines were part of The Brass Monkeys until he retired from touring in 2019. 


Click here to see artwork generated at live performances



Previous line up