Musician Pete Long wearing a fez, holding a whiskey at his home bar

musician, educator, jazz stalwart

Anyone who knows the British jazz scene knows Pete Long. With a talent that’s as big as his personality Pete is a favourite woodwind player with some of the biggest names in the business, working with legends like Jools Holland, Tom Jones, Norah Jones, Georgie Fame and Lionel Richie, to name but a few, and producing arrangements for John Cale, Texas and Sir Paul McCartney.

He’s a prolific educator and director of the Big Band at Ronnie Scott’s alongside his own projects including his award-winning repertory orchestra Echoes Of Ellington, whose 2018 album “The Jazz Planets” won the Times “Must Have Jazz CD Of The Year”.

A 1973 bar menu of the Croydon Victory Club, at musician Pete Long's home.

Bakelite, Sid James and 600 Airfix models

Pete lives just a stone’s throw from his childhood stomping ground of East Croydon and the bar you can see in the photos is based on the one in the Britannia Guest House in Rhyl - the kind of which any touring musician will instantly recognise. I especially loved the bar menu which Pete has set to 1973. In fact much of Pete’s home has more than a whiff of nostalgia. There’s the fully functional bakelite rotary telephone and his collection of over 600 Airfix models. In fact the little RAF Hurricane sitting on the bar was Pete’s very first model, made when he was 11 years old. 

The fez was a last minute addition to the shoot, grabbed from Pete’s hat box, which usually comes out after a few drinks and "makes any party a bit more fun". 

You’ll be hard pushed to find a more affable, knowledgeable and talented chap this side of the Watford Gap. Consider all this man has done for music and musicians, surely it’s just a matter of time before it’s Pete Long OBE. I certainly hope so.

Photographer Gary Williams


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