Meet the ‘Ain’t Misbehavin’ jazz band

For their ‘HMS Syncopation’ show HSQ decided to utilise a swinging rhythm section and as tutors for Trafford Music Service Helen and Helena knew just the guys to ask!

In 2016 staff from Trafford Music Service created a jazz band for their annual ‘ExTraffordganza’ event. They delighted hundreds of Trafford schoolchildren with a medley outlining the history of jazz music from Dixieland to Funk. Although this was only meant to be a one off event the group had so much fun playing together that they decided to continue rehearsing. They named the group the “Ain’t Misbehavin’ Jazz Group” after the Fats Waller tune – and a nod to them all being teachers – and in February 2017 had their first gig.

Simone Manunza
Simone Manunza was born in Milan where he studied Jazz Guitar and Arrangements and Composition for Jazz Big Band. He has been performing as a professional since 1990 in Milan Italy, Greece, Switzerland and in the UK, where he has lived since 2012.
Some of Simone Manunza’s current and past collaborations include: Antonio Zambrini, Michael Rosen, Tito Mangialajo Rantzer, Massimo Pintori, Francesca Ajmar in Italy and Trevor Owen, Liam Byrne, Dave Roberts and the Ain’t Misbehavin’ Jazz group in the UK.
In 2001 he published the CD Coltrane’s Colours dedicated to the music of John Coltrane with his Italian trio which continues to receive good reviews in Italian jazz magazines; it is distributed throughout Europe and Japan and is available on iTunes and Spotify.
Simone Manunza has taught the guitar and conducted jazz ensembles and big bands in many music schools in Milan and on summer courses in Italy and the UK. He has been working for Trafford Music Service since 2012, teaching jazz and classical guitar to whole classes wider opportunities and ensembles.

Paul Harding – Bass
Paul is a guitarist, double bassist and pianist with a background in pop, jazz, and musical theatre instrumental performance. Having toured and recorded primarily with rock groups ‘The Zetlands’ and ‘The Story’, Paul began teaching in 2007. Since qualifying he has developed as both a curriculum and instrumental teacher with a particular interest in first access to music (through initiatives such as Musical Futures and Wider Opportunities). Paul currently teaches for Trafford Music Service where he delivers full class, small group and ensemble teaching for ages 4-18.

Neil McMinn – Drums / Percussion
Neil is an accomplished drummer whose ongoing professional experience is wide and varied. From international touring and recording with Rock bands (Sonic Boon Six, Ginger Wildheart feat. Courtney Love and Lionheart) to Manchester based jazz ensembles, Latin bands and musical theatre. Neil began teaching in the early 2000s, focussing on one-to-one drum kit lessons before joining Trafford Music Service in 2014 where he runs percussion ensembles, teaches wider opportunities and curriculum programmes.