Photographing Cloudmakers Five

A jazz awakening

Cloudmakers Five | Making a band image | Photographed by Neil Munns

In a packed room that was empty half an hour before, there was now no space at all. Every movement had to be calculated but the atmosphere was great. I was asked to photograph Cloudmakers Five gig in Frome where top drummer Dave Smith was playing to a home crowd. So as the cold winter greyness descended into afternoon darkness a beautiful sound was coming from the  upstairs at Sam’s Kitchen, Frome .

Ably described by Sussex Jazz Magazine ; ‘Jim Hart’s Cloudmakers Five, originally a trio but extended with saxophone and guitar, have so far released four albums to critical acclaim, mostly due to Jim Hart’s artful compositions and an enviable chemistry between the musicians in the band, all of whom are accomplished in their own right.’ They put on quite a show!

I photographed the gig as part of their recent UK tour. Each of the players masters in their own fields but worked effortlessly together. I captured lots of images of the gig but what I was really there for was to record the band together, after the gig.

Cloudmakers 5 | ©Neil Munns Photography

A quick question, Hands up who has heard of’?  This site has noticed that Jazz Musicians seem to be photographed in front of walls. Having eyed up the carefully exposed red-brick wall in the restaurant I quickly made other plans, well worth it I think. Forewarned I set up a number of shots anywhere but the wall!

I also had a chance to photograph the Cloudmakers Trio on Location in Frome. Working with a beautiful strong sun and a very special location, we managed to create to the right feeling for the band and its upcoming releases.

If you want to listen to the enthralling rhythms by  Cloudmakers Five check out their site and new album release at and for Cloudmakers Trio  try