A PAIR of musicians who play regularly at the Sunday morning All-age Communion service at St John’s helped bring the curtain down on the fourth Big Burns Supper.

Mark Toner and John Taylor formed the Getz Group jazz band last year and played their first gig after being invited to take part in the fringe festival of music, theatre and comedy.

Organisers of the now regular feature in the Dumfries calendar were so happy with them that the band were asked back for a repeat.

At the Cairndale Hotel on Saturday afternoon in a performance billed ‘Smooth Jazz for the Bard’, the band struck

John Taylor on saxophone led the Get Group jazz band at the Bib Burns Supper event.
John Taylor on saxophone led the Getz Group jazz band at the Big Burns Supper event. Mark Toner on keyboards.

up again. They were one of a number of live acts across the town on the day the festival drew to a close.

Mark played piano and organ with John on saxophone and clarinet. They were joined on stage by guitarists Doug Taylor and Dave Mowett, with youngster Will Rickards on bass and well-known local folk musician Alex Cook on percussion.

The group take their name from American tenor saxophonist Stan Getz who forged his reputation in America from the late 1940s through to the 70s, best known for popularising bossa nova, a form of Brazilian music that fuses samba and jazz.

“The nice thing about Stan Getz is that you could always follow the tune whatever he did,’ explained Mark.

‘It is a very melodious form of jazz, we thought it would make nice, easy listening. You could get a few gigs, people would be quite happy to have that playing in the background at parties.’

It was after chatting following a Sunday morning All-age service in the church hall about 18 months ago that the pair decided to start a jazz band.

As well as making their debut at the Burns Supper they played later in the year at the Lockerbie Jazz Festival.

They have also performed at the Yellow Door gallery in Queen Street in Dumfries on a number of occasions and are booked to appear at the Lockerbie Little Theatre during the 36th Dumfries and Galloway Arts Festival in late May.



St John the Evangelist, Dumfries, is a parish of the Scottish Episcopal Church also serving Methodist parishioners locally.


You can donate to St John’s by credit or debit card by following these links.


Contemporary Service

The Contemporary Service is at 6pm, on the second and fourth Sundays of the month, followed by refreshments in the hall. Check here for December arrangements which will be different.


St John's Church

19 hours 39 minutes ago

Sunday 3rd December is our Eucharistic service in the church at 11:00 am. Do join us- be great to welcome you! Please note NO choral evensong tonight. Carols for advent

St John's Church

1 week 17 hours ago

Sunday 26th November is our Christ the King Sunday Service . This is an Eucharistic service in the church at 11:00 am. Do join us- be great to welcome you!

St John's Church

1 week 4 days ago

Come along and join us this Sunday evening at 6pm. Be great to welcome you!

St John's Church

2 weeks 4 hours ago

Everyone is very welcome to come along to Choral Evensong at St John's Church Newall Terrace, Dumfries, this evening at 6pm, sung by the choir of St John's Church. Music

Tag: St John’s musicians at Big Burns Supper