Drummer Allan Ganley has been busy on the British jazz scene since the early '50s, his interest in syncopated, swinging music developing a decade earlier when he was a child. He began playing drums at 16, joined the Royal Air Force a few years later and was a professional percussionist by the time he rejoined civilian life at the age of 20. In the first half of the '50s he worked with bandleaders such as Jack Parnell, Ambrose, and Johnny Dankworth. The drummer formed an ensemble vaguely known as the New Jazz Group in 1957 featuring trumpeter Dizzy Reece and pianist Derek Smith.
The just plain Jazzmakers came along near the end of the following year: this combo was started up by Ganley but only named thusly upon the later addition of superb baritone saxophonist Ronnie Ross. This ensemble toured the United States in 1959, Ganley having gained earlier ground in a previous American tour in which he was matched up against fellow countryman and tubs thrasher Ronnie Scott. The drummer's groups such as the Jazzmakers and the more recent Allan Ganley Trio have been documented by several British jazz labels; Live at the Station with the latter combo came out in 2001 in part as a celebration of this artist's 50th year in the music business. Percussionist and composer Victor Feldman was featured on a recording of Ganley's warm composition entitled "Duffle Coat" on a Contemporary release. ~ Eugene Chadbourne, Rovi