Red Hand Jazz Band

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Red Hand Jazz Band (photo by D-22)

Red Hand Jazz Band , (Beijing based, Jazz, Fusion)

disbanded in 2009


Line Up

Saxophone: Nathaniel Gao

Trumpet: Wen Zhiyong

Piano: Xia Jia (ex-Red Hand Jazz Band, Lawrence Ku Septet, Zhang Ying Jazz Group, The Dew Electrio, ex-Cui Jian Band, Xia Jia Trio, Xia Jia Organ Quartet))

Bass: Da Huai

Drums: Xiao Dou 小豆 (ex-Red Hand Jazz Band, ex-Sand, Xia Jia Trio, Eastern Quartet, Dew Electric Trio, Beijing City Big Band, Ah Q Orchestra and Arrows Made of Desire)


Red Hand Jazz Band sundays D 22.jpg

taken from D-22 Webpage:

For a long time much of the jazz we saw coming out of Beijing tended towards new age, fusion and jazz lite, but for us everything changed when the Red Hand Jazz Band performed their first tryout at D-22 in October 2006. We were so impressed that they were immediately booked to perform every Sunday at the club, and within a few months had made themselves one of the best bands, if not the best, in China.

Red Hand performs a mixture of classic bop and post-bop standards and, increasingly, their own compositions, which tend to be extremely sophisticated, rhythm-driven pieces. Fronted by Nathaniel Gao on saxophone, who has a tremendous ear and brilliantly orchestrates the very deep, and widely differing talents in the band. The band consists of keyboard veteran Xia Jia, trumpetist Wen Zhiyong, percussionist Xiao Dou and Da Huai on upright bassist. Individually some of the most talented and intelligent jazz musicians in China, together they sizzle and burn like nothing we’ve seen in a long time. It would take too long to describe how good each of these musicians are – the only common denominator being a very refreshing intelligence in their musical approach – but when they are really burning they must be one of the tightest jazz bands in Asia.. Their performances not only draw a regular crowd of jazz aficionados, but usually at the very front of the stage you can catch a who’s who of Beijing underground rock and punk musicians fascinated by the ferocious rhythms and intellectual brilliance. Among the performers in the band we would single out teenage prodigy Da Huai on upright bass – someone who we are going to hear a lot from in a few years.

In 2010 this new hopefulls of Beijing Jazz scen found an rapid end. According to plans going aboard of two band members, they disbanded :(

taken from

Red Hand Jazz Band

The recently formed Red Hand Jazz Band has made it their mission to enliven the Beijing jazz scene by creating original jazz based on the fundamentals of jazz: improvisation and communication. These open-minded musicians emphasize elements from past jazz traditions as well as original material with the hope of reaching out to an ever-growing Beijing jazz audience.

Saxophone: Gao Taihang aka Nathaniel Gao

Red Hand was formed by saxophonist Nathaniel Gao, who upon his arrival in 2006 quickly became active in the Beijing jazz and creative music communities. Gao, a Chinese-American studied jazz saxophone at the University of Northern Iowa. He currently performs with the Beijing City Big Band and Bu Yi Ding, as well as groups led by guitarist Liu Yue and drummer Justin Padro.

As a U.S. Tenor saxophonist in hand, he and Xia Jia, organized the Beijing Red jazz band with other musicians. His band is recognized by jazz fans as the best jazz band in Beijing, and he participates many other bands in Beijing.

Trumpet: Wen Zhiyong

Wen graduated from the Central Conservatory with an emphasis in classic trumpet£¬ under the tutelage of professor Ji Rui Kai. He studied with trumpet master Adolf Holler and was first trumpet of the Vienna Philharmonic at the international arts festival sponsored by her. Wen also plays with Ah Q Orchestra, Bu Yi Ding and the Beijing City Big band.

Born on March 27, 1973, Wen Zhiyong is a famous trumpet player. He has experienced a rich and colorful life. He became interested in JAZZ and in 1995, he became a member of the Left Hand Jazz Group. During this period, he touched upon music of different style. In 1996, he joined Liu Yuan Jazz Band. In 1997, he joined the 1989 Band and performed with Zang Tianshuo. In 1998, he released his personal album "An Outsider".

Keyboard: Xia Jia

A schoolmate of Wen Zhiyong, Xia Jia later went to the United States to study jazz and graduated from Eastman Conservatory. He is the conductor of the Beijing City Big Band. He plays keyboard with Cui Jian's band and also is the frontman of Dew Electric Trio.

He studied piano with his mother since his childhood; he majored in piano and commanding at the Central Conservatory of Music; he started to play Jazz Piano from 1995 until now, mainly playing jazz piano or keyboard, composing music, teaching and so on. In 2005, as the soul figure of Xia Jia Jazz Trio, he was invited, together with the band, to join the Finland Jazz Festival in Helsinki. He is currently a member of Dew Electric Trio as a keyboard player and band founder, of Red Hand Jazz Quintet as a pianist, of Beijing City Jazz Orchestra as one of the commanders and organizers, and of Cui Jian's Band as a keyboard player. In 2003, he published his teaching VCD "The Tutorial Guidance to Jazz Piano Extemporization".

Drum: Xiao Dou (Liu Xingyu)

A representative of China's new generation of jazz musicians, Xiao Dou is beginning to make his mark in the music world as a result of his sharp artistic insight and diligent training. That's Beijing has advised Redhand audiences to: 'Keep your eye out for drummer Xiao Dou.' Xiao Dou currently is a member of both the Dew Electric Trio and the Beijing City Big Band, and also plays with Ah Q Orchestra and Arrows Made of Desire.

Xiao Dou is one of the representatives in the new generation of Chinese jazz musicians. He makes a figure out of himself through his keen insight of the art and his diligent and industrious practice.

In 1998, he studied in Beijing Midi Music School and learned to play the drum from the famous percussion player Izumi Koga (Gu Hequan).

In 1999, he entered Beijing jazz jungle and performed as a drummer in Liu Yuan Quartet from 2000 to 2002.

In 2003, he performed with Kevin Hough and other American pianists in Shenzhen.

Back in Beijing in 2004, he participated in the performance of local band ¨Cthe Sand Band. At the same time, he took part in the series performances of "anti-lip-synch movement" initiated by Cui Jian.

In 2005, he performed with the French pianist Christopher's Quartet band.

In March, 2006, he participated in the recording of Ah Q Jazz Band's first album. In May, he joined Xia Jia Electronic Trio and performed in the Midi Music Festival. In August, as the drummer of Xia Jia Electronic Trio, he participated in Beijing Nine Gates Jazz Festival held in the Forbidden City Concert Hall and was received very positively.

Bass: Da Huai

Da Huai graduated from Beijing Contemporary Music Institute. A member of a younger generation of Chinese jazz musicians, he has begun to bring a new vitality to the Beijing music scene. The rhythm section of Xiao Dou, Da Huai and Xia Jia make up Red Hand's foundation. Da Huai also plays with ensembles led by pianist Christophe Lier's and drummer Justin Padro.

Bass: Wang Chenhuai

Huai was graduated from the Institute of Modern Music. As a new generation of Beijing bassists, he has brought new life to music. With the solid capacity as a young musician to grasp the updated concept of jazz, he cooperates much with the drummer Xiao Dou. Plus the rich experience of the keyboard player Xia Jia, the three-member group's rhythm lays a solid foundation for the Red Hand Band.

Regular gigs

Red Hand Jazz Band perform live shows on every Sunday at D-22

Further Information

  • Myspace page
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  • Douban group
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