Corey Mwamba

Born and based in Derby, Corey Mwamba's commitment to jazz and improvised music in Britain and Ireland drives all aspects of his work, whether through composition, playing, or promoting new music.

Corey predominantly plays vibraphone; he also plays dulcimer and uses audio processing software. He is recognised as a highly creative improviser and composer working across a wide range of jazz and contemporary music. Mwamba's distinctive approach and tone is instantly recognisable in any context: a potent blend of pure sound, highly melodic phrases and ethereal textures; barely whispered chords and ear-piercing robotic screams. Corey won a PRSF/Jerwood Foundation Take Five artist development award in 2007; was short-listed for the Innovation category in the BBC Jazz Awards in 2008; and received nominations for “Rising Star on Vibraphone” in the 62nd, 63rd, 64th, 65th, 66th, and 67th DownBeat Annual Critics' Polls.

Mwamba's main group is the critically acclaimed yana with Dave Kane (bass) and Joshua Blackmore (drums). This group exemplifies a core ideal of creating an “open, living music”; listening and responding spontaneously as a unit to make music that has love, language and a groove. Their first studio release don't overthink it was hailed as “engaging and evocative” (All About Jazz) and described as “the sound of three minds working together in a utopian zone, way beyond the individual ego - and producing something quite beautiful in the process” (Jazzwise). Their latest release on Two Rivers Records, described by Wire Magazine as “their strongest album to date” is baby/people. Dave and Corey are also in an improvising sextet called The Spirit Farm, formed out of research by pianist Adam Fairhall. Mwamba and Fairhall also form a trio with drummer Johnny Hunter called Backyard Chassis.

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”[An] instinctive originality on vibes. [Corey Mwamba] is an elemental driving force” Manchester Evening News

“Derby-based Corey Mwamba has been described as 'the maverick vibraphonist', and many critics regard him as the most innovative player of his instrument since Orphy Robinson.” Jazz North-East

“Mwamba, alive to every musical possibility thrown his way by his bandmates, was constantly selecting the precisely appropriate tone and timbre for the particular moment, either by changing gong-type (covered) mallets for xylophone-style (unwrapped) mallets, or by occasionally playing his instrument with his bare hands or a violin bow, drawing from its keys an astonishing variety of sounds, from mbira-like 'muffled' notes to ringing, sonorous, sustained tones or cascades of single notes, occasionally ending pieces with a subtle reverberating effect [...]” Chris Parker

“[...] Certainly the most tremendous discovery was the vibraphonist Corey Mwamba, who demonstrated amazing originality and vigour in his interpretations of the themes, in particular Hackensack (duo with drums) and Little Rootie Tootie (duo with baritone saxophone).” All About Jazz Monk Forum[translated from French]

“Corey Mwamba, the balletic young Derby vibraphonist, played the Derby commission Argentum..

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Discography

Don't Overthink It

Don't Overthink It

Self Produced
2013

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Cuts

Origin Records
2012

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In The Vortex

In The Vortex

Self-Produced
0

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Ynglinga

Ynglinga

Corey Mwamba
Don't Overthink It

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Corey Mwamba
In The Vortex

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