PizzaExpress is set to launch its own record label in conjunction with its live music arm PizzaExpress Live. PX Records will release albums from new and established acts in the jazz and soul scene alongside a selection of music from PizzaExpress Live’s extensive archive of live recordings.
Since its inception in Soho in the late ‘70s, PizzaExpress Live has built a reputation as one of the UK’s leading destinations for live music, presenting over 50,000 concerts from an array of global stars including the likes of Tony Bennett, Amy Winehouse, Diana Krall, Van Morrison, Bill Wyman, Benny Carter, Brian May, George Shearing, Charlie Watts, Mose Allison, Anita O’Day and the list goes on.
Live music has always been an important part of PizzaExpress. Founder Peter Boizot was a jazz lover and constantly sought ways to integrate music into his restaurants, whether at PizzaExpress branches from the late 1960’s, at his other ventures like Pizza on the Park or at Kettner’s from the 1970’s. The flagship venue at 10 Dean Street, London has hosted internationally acclaimed music since its first ticketed shows in May 1976. The venue also plays a strong role in providing performance opportunities for emerging artists, in fact, Pizza Express can claim to be responsible for hosting the first UK concerts from a long line of musicians who have gone on to become international star acts – including Jamie Cullum, Norah Jones and Gregory Porter to name a few – PizzaExpress Live has become a celebrated London institution synonymous with the very best jazz and soul music.
The next chapter in the iconic organization’s story is the launch of PX Records and the release of a selection of live albums recorded across its venues – PizzaExpress Live in Holborn, the historic PizzaExpress Jazz Club in Soho, and The Pheasantry in Chelsea – which will feature performances from a broad mix of established artists and the very best emerging talent from across the worlds of jazz, soul, blues and beyond.
The first run of releases will feature albums from master US saxophonist and mainstay of the international jazz scene Scott Hamilton, incendiary UK soul outfit Mamas Gun, genre-blurring multi-instrumentalist and producer edbl, as well as one of the most hotly-tipped new bands on the UK scene Native Dancer. In addition, the label will release a series of legacy recordings sourced from PizzaExpress Live’s extensive archive dating back over 45 years and featuring previously unreleased performances from some of the legendary acts to have graced its stage.
Ross Dines, head of programing at PizzaExpress and who will play a vital roll in the A&R of PX Records stated “The PX Records vision is to celebrate the prestigious PizzaExpress Live legacy and to share some of the incredible performances that we get to experience across our venues on a daily basis. When listening back to recordings, we’re always struck by both the quality of the audio and by how perfectly they captured the energy and excitement of the show itself. A PizzaExpress record label has long been a dream of the team here and we’re delighted that it’s finally coming to fruition.”
Collaberating with Pizza Express, Henry Semmence from Absolute, added “The team at Absolute have been working with Pizza Express for the last couple of years preparing for the launch of PX Records. It is an iconic brand that has a history of supporting live music and we are delighted to be part of the team making both new and classic recordings available. There are some exceptional releases lined up and I can only see this label going from strength to strength.”
The label’s first two albums – Scott Hamilton Quartet At PizzaExpress Live – In London and Mamas Gun At PizzaExpress Live – In London – will be released on April 14th 2023.
Last modified: March 15, 2023