Celebrating 20 years in 2022, Michael Lamb's 19-strong big band prides itself on the versatility of its performance: originally rooted in swing, but beyond comfortable performing new, original and contemporary material.
Featuring Alice Grace, it is the only ensemble of it’s kind in the North of England and was recently hailed as "one of the UK's most effortlessly fluent big bands."
The band travels the country and draws large audiences at established clubs, festivals, music venues and theatres to great acclaim.
As well as drawing huge, often sell out crowds, in their own right – Stricty Smokin’ have performed with jazz A listers including Claire Martin, Mark Nightingale, Mike Lovatt, Bruce Adams, Alan Barnes, Paul Booth and more.
The band’s niche is in the performance of programmes drawing influence from a huge range of composers, arrangers and musicians from across the world alongside Michael’s own arrangements. The scope of style and technique is huge and Strictly Smokin’ work tirelessly to achieve brilliant standards and engaging performances. In Newcastle, the band regularly appears at Hoochie Coochie, Gosforth Civic Theatre and Sage Gateshead.
During Covid-19, the band successfully raised the funds to produce three contrasting albums. Harlem ’58 focuses on the music featured in Art Kane’s iconic photograph and features music from our show of the same name. The second album features music originaly performed and new arrangements inspired by the great Ella Fitzgerald. And, the final album features a plethora of guest soloists playing all new arrangements by Michael Lamb. Mike Lovatt, Gareth Lockrane, Anthony Strong, Alan Barnes and more all feature. Harlem '58 and Ella are both available to purchase now, and 'Friends' will be released in 2023.