Basil’s interest in music and the piano started at junior school. His quest to become a jazz musician started in earnest when he undertook classical piano lessons from a local teacher for a few years. He then went on to have private lessons with jazz pianist/composer Tim Richards from 1986 – 89. He rounded of his training at Goldsmiths College London in 1991.
His professional career started in the summer of 1993 as a freelance musician and he steadily rose up the ranks to play with some of the leading UK players such as Jim Mullen, Tony Kofi, Dave O’Higgins and Renato D’Aiello. In November 2003 Basil produced and released his debut CD My Guardian Angel featuring his original compositions, which led to a distribution deal with New Note Records. The CD received critical acclaim and air play. His second album ‘Sound Reasoning’ was released in October 2009, distributed by Proper Note Ltd. The CD contained 10 more fresh and exciting originals from Basil’s pen which confirmed his stature as an established composer. Sound Reasoning received rave reviews including a 4-star rating from Jack Massarik (Evening Standard). He appeared on Claire Martin’s Jazz Line Up show (BBC Radio 3) to talk about his album and musical influences. He also performed a live solo piano piece for the programme. Three of the main jazz DJs from Jazz FM, Helen Mayhew, Mike Chadwick and Sarah Ward have all recently played his music.
Basil has been leading his bands (trio, quartet and quintet) since 1995 and has performed in such venues as Ronnie Scott’s, Pizza Express (Soho), Royal Festival Hall, Queen Elizabeth and National Theatre Foyers, the Swanage and Ealing Jazz Festivals, The Vortex Jazz Club, The Crypt, The Hideaway, Boxford Fleece, Watermills Jazz, The Bonington Theatre and The Verdict Jazz Club. He has played in various R&B and Gospel bands in the UK and abroad. Basil is also adept at playing solo piano/piano duos (The American Songbook) where he has performed at The Savoy, The Rochester and Claridges hotels.
In the Autumn of 2015 Basil completed a successful UK tour with his brilliant band (Tony Kofi or Ed Jones – Saxophone, Quentin Collins or Steve Fishwick – Trumpet, Larry Bartley- Double bass and Winston Clifford or Rod Youngs – Drums) in a tribute to one of the most influential composers and pianists in jazz, the late, great Horace Silver, who passed a year earlier.
A new album A Point of Reference was released in November 2021, again backed by Proper Records. A series of dates have been booked for 2022 and 2023 to celebrate the new release. Tracks from the album have been featured on Jazz FM.
In 2022 Basil took part in some filming work for The Crown Series 6 (Netflix) and for Steve McQueen’s latest project based around Snake Hips Johnson. Basil was the pianist as part of a 1930’s/40’s Big Band in both sessions.