15th October, 2007

Chris BousfieldNightdiver is a poetry jazz group of the Bousfield family members, Chris, John and Gus (and occasionally, Nan).

The poet, Christine Bousfield, is interested in the relationship between language and subjectivity. She often uses dreams and free association in her poetry; and is convinced of the value of writing, humour and song as a ‘working out’ of memory and history, in her case focused on experiences and histories in the Bradford area.

John BousfieldJohn Bousfield plays and teaches woodwind, particularly improvisation.

Gus, their son, is a freelance musician, composer, and writer, for television and film.

Nan, their daughter, sings and plays saxophone, flute and bass.

(We now have a new member, Mark Hearn, who specialises in rock and classical guitar, with  songwriting)

All members of the group work on composition, whilst Gus arranges the final song/poem.

Gus Bousfield

They all concentrate on the way the language, register and address of a poem can inform musical structure, rhythm, pitch and tone, and try to encourage cross-fertilisation of instruments and voice—allowing the instruments to speak, and the speaking voice to sing—in preference to the more traditional voice/backing hierarchy.

Their performances include appearances at: Mind Odyssey, Leeds; The Albert Poets, Huddersfield; Riverlines, York; Ilkley Literature Festival; Bradford Literature Festival; Haworth Literature Festival; and Cheltenham Literature Festival.