The Zoo Community Jazz Band is the alter-ego of Pete Briley. Briley is best known as the man behind the banjo, lap steel and pedal steel in THE OUTLAW ORCHESTRA and as the songwriter behind country-folk duo HENGISTBURY. As a session musician, he has performed on tracks by artists such as RAPHAEL & THE SEXY BOYS, CHRIS HARVEY, Edmund Bagnell and THE JDreamers.
But The Zoo Community Jazz Band actually pre-dates all of these projects. Founded in 2011, ZCJB was originally a faceless, anonymous collective of musicians including pianist SIMEON WALKER, singer POPPY WILSON, Simon Briley of WE ARE BANDICOOT and produced by Graham Waller of STRIKE EAGLE and GLITTERWOLF
The collective’s first album, ‘Monsieur Chevalier’ was released in 2011 with the first single ‘Dark and Dirty Dancehalls’ featured on BBC Introducing and the second single ‘Can’t Hold it Down’ landed a spot on the BBC 6 Music playlist in early 2012.
In the Spring of 2012, ZCJB began work on their second album ‘Stories’, starting in Kent before heading to Nashville for the finishing touches.
And then the band entered a hibernation that would last 8 years.
In 2020, as Covid forced the world into lockdown, Pete Briley dusted the Zoo Community Jazz Band off and released a series of new singles all performed and recorded by himself, including a synth wave cover of Dolly Parton’s ‘Jolene’ which was included in the Spotify Synthwave Covers playlist.
Throughout 2021, Briley has been working on new ZCJB material with some new releases expected in 2022.