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Bebop Spoken There

Buddy Rich: "You either swing a band or you don't swing a band - (Metronome April 1956).

Sinclair Traill: “Well I don't think he (Chet Baker) can sing either.” – (Jazz Journal August 1956).

Fred Rowe Funeral Arrangements

The funeral of well-respected and much-loved trumpet player Fred Rowe will take place on Wednesday, December 13 at 14:00 hrs: Lytham Crematorium (Regent Ave, Lytham Saint Annes FY8 4AB). Afterwards - All warmly welcome for refreshments at 2 Chapel Close, Wesham, Preston PR4 3HB.
No flowers by request donations to Parkinson's UK. Should you wish to donate to Parkinson’s research, please contact the Funeral Directors (J & A Porter Funeral Services, Windsor Court, Windsor Road, Ansdell, Lytham St Annes, Lancashire FY8 1AH. Tel: 01253735423) or place in a collection box that will be provided at the end of the service.
"Please do come along, we would love to see as many of Fred’s friends as possible" - Joan Rowe and family.

Submissions for review

Whilst we appreciate the many emails, texts, messages and other communications we receive requesting album/gig reviews on BSH, regrettably, we are unable to reply to them all other than those we are able to answer with a positive response.
Similarly, CDs received by post will only be considered if accompanied by sufficient background material.
Finally, bear in mind that this is a jazz-based site when submitting your album.
Lance

Today Monday December 11

Afternoon

Jazz in the Afternoon - Cullercoats Crescent Club, 1 Hudleston, Cullercoats NE30 4QS. Tel: 0191 NE30 4QS. 1:00pm. Free.

Evening

?????

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To the best of our knowledge, details of the above events are correct but may be subject to alteration.

Friday, October 31, 2014

Mike Durham's Classic Jazz Party

For the running order of concerts please follow this link.
Lance.

Strictly Smokin' Big Band - Open Rehearsal October 30.

(Review by Kath J./ Photo courtesy of Kathryn Lowden)
The night started out with a small gathering of attentive listeners to Gerry Mulligan’s Catch as Catch Can.  Next came one of the most famous songs from the Big Band era, a tune written by Louis Prima in 1935,  Sing Sing Sing, bravely executed by the SSBB so early in the evening, but the musicians were quickly warming to their task, particularly Guy on Drums!   

Gregory Porter/Nina Ferro @ Sage Gateshead October 30.

Gregory Porter (vcl); Chip Crawford (pno); Aaron James (bs); Emanuel Harold (dms); Yosuke Sato (alt).
Well, what can I say? Sage Gateshead was three tiers full. A sure indication that they've got it right! Gregory Porter is quite an amazing performer and to pull such a following is something else. And they all loved him!
As well they should.
The big man in the funny hat gave an assured performance and, if I hadn't heard him earlier this year at Hoochie, this would have probably been a rave review. But, how can you compare the intimate setting of a 250 max bar where, if you got there early enough, you could almost shake hands with the star, with row BB in a 1,640 auditorium where the big man (and he is a big man) was but a distant object?!
The program was near enough the same as at HC, the band likewise, and Yosuke Sato remains one of the best alto sax players I've heard this (or any) year but, unlike the adoring masses around me, it didn't quite connect with me ...if only I hadn't been to Hoochie in March...
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Thursday, October 30, 2014

CD Review: Delfeayo Marsalis - The Last Southern Gentleman.

Delfeayo Marsalis (tmb); Ellis Marsalis (pno); John Clayton (bs); Marvin"Smitty" Smith.
(Review by Lance).
I cannot recall the last time, if ever, I've had a trombone led quartet disc to review - more's the pity! Delfeayo, brother of  Wynton, Branford, Jason and son of Ellis (here on piano), is a trombonist of comparable talent to his better known siblings. Very much an old school player but with a modern approach. Think of Vic Dickenson or Trummy and you can see where he's coming from. Adding a hint of Jimmy Knepper, JJ and maybe Slide Hampton brings you a little closer, then take into account the Marsalis genes and you have the complete product - a product of the New Orleans of today born in the Big Easy of yesterday. Easy it may be but it's not elevator music! No siree!  

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Jazz Musicians Thinking Allowed

In today’s edition of Thinking Allowed (Radio 4, 4:00pm) Laurie Taylor discusses an academic paper on the subject of the employment realities facing the ‘creative worker’.
A case study focuses on the world of the jazz musician – the jam session, the function work, the day to day struggle to make ends meet. The programme is repeated at 12:15 am Monday (Sunday night/Monday morning) and is available on BBC iPlayer.
Russell.

Preview: Abdullah Ibrahim @ Sage Gateshead

Abdullah Ibrahim has, in the course of 80 years, emerged from his early days in South Africa, where he was known as Dollar Brand - Brand being his birth name - to today where the name of Abdullah Ibrahim is revered in jazz piano circles worldwide.
A few years back he thrilled the audience at the Gateshead International Jazz Festival with a concert by his band Ekaya that, no doubt, remains uppermost in the memory of all those who filled Hall One on that memorable evening.

Paragon @ Jazz Café October 28.

Peter Ehwald (reeds); Arthur Lea (keyboards); Matthias Akeo Nowak (bass); Jon Scott (drums).
(Review by Steve H/photo courtesy of Ken Drew.) 
Maybe David Cameron and Angel Merkel should have been at this gig last night to observe this wonderfully cohesive and elegant Anglo-German collaboration. If our politicians could work as well together as these talented musicians our future in Europe would not be in any doubt.

CD Review: Steve Heckman Quintet - Search For Peace.

Steve Heckman (ten/bar); Howard Alden (gtr); Matt Clark (B3); Marcus Shelby (bs); Akira Tana (dms).
(Review by Lance).
It's a couple of years now since I heard Howard Alden down at Boisdale. I was impressed then and I'm equally impressed hearing him on this disc particularly alongside his fellow travellers.
Heckman's a relatively new name to me but his modern/mainstream tenor (2 tracks on bari*) style gels perfectly with the ace guitarist.
How refreshing it is to hear players who can work the changes without resorting to histrionics - players who know a melody when they hear one.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

CD Reviews - Like Topsy...

LondonJazzNews  recently commented that 80% of discs sent get reviewed - that is some achievement. Up here the position is reversed inasmuch as 80% of discs sent don't get reviewed!
This a combination of available time and a shortage of willing hands - it were ever so.
My current order of preference for selecting discs are:
A) Local north east (UK) bands/artists.
B) British bands/artists.
C) Established international names.
D) Outstanding unknowns irrespective of where they hang out..
E) Ones that I absolutely love (This automatically replaces Cat. A/B/C/D)!
In the meantime, rather than ignore those discs that don't get reviewed, here is a list of just some of them with links to where they've been reviewed elsewhere.

CD Review: New Century Ragtime Orchestra - "Singin' in the Bathtub"

Alastair Lord, Graham Hardy (tpts); Don Fairley (tmb); Ed Cross (vln); Jim McBriarty (alt/clt/vcl). Alan Marshall (alt/clt), Gavin Lee, Steve Andrews (ten/clt); Neville Hartley (pno); Phil Rutherford (sousa/tuba); Steve Doyle (dms); Keith Stephen (gtr/bjo); Dave Kerr (ldr/arr); Caroline Irwin (vcl) + Keith Nichols (pno); Nick Ward (dms).
(Review by Lance).
The NCRO are one of the treasures of the north east scene. No bebop spoken here, this music even pre-dates the Lindy Hop! Having said that, there can be few bands anywhere in the world who can recreate the period so well as this ensemble. The soloists, several of whom are frequently heard in more contemporary settings, adjust to the idiom so well you'd be excused for assuming they were wearing spats and two-tone shoes as they drove to the studio in a Studebaker Special Six automobile.

Monday, October 27, 2014

Soznak @ The Globe – October 25

Graham Robinson (sax); Steve Mounter (trombone); Paul Miskin (keys); Hank Hayes (banjo);
Chris Dobson (bass); Yannik Tchicmi (drums); plus various other instruments which made an appearance, such as mouthorgan. shakers, Flugelhorn (?) and a steel pan effect from somewhere.
(Review by Ann Alex).
The Jazz Coop at the Globe is making an honest attempt to present a broad array of music besides straight jazz, and this gig proved the point.  This band is often to be heard on the streets of Newcastle, doing their reggae, Afro jazz, and even 80’s pop, and tonight indoors they gave us all three with good measure, in 2 long sets totalling about 2 hours 20 minutes.  This was a fun night all round and by the end most people were up dancing.  What’s not to like?

Ronnie Scott’s celebrates 55th anniversary with live stream of Dianne Reeves main show & Takuya Kuroda Late Late Show on Thursday 30th October Sold-out Ronnie Scott’s at 55 all-star concert on Friday 31st October

With tickets to their sold out shows in such high demand, Ronnie Scott’s has decided to make a birthday gift to jazz fans the world over, by announcing the live streaming of soul-jazz super-star Dianne Reeves this Thursday at 8.30pm (GMT).  And as if that isn’t enough the club will also be streaming the Late show from rising Japanese trumpet-star and Blue Note recording artist Takuya Kuroda (a key member of Jose James band) at 11.30pm (GMT). Reeves will be performing material from her eagerly anticipated Concord Records release Beautiful Life, whereas Kuroda will perform material from his hip, funky and soulful Blue Note debut Rising Son.

WEA Jazz Courses Start On Thursday – A Reminder

Regarding the previous blog item, if you wish to go on the WEA courses which are taught by Steve Glendinning, get booked up NOW. 
An Improvisation for Musicians: 1-3pm, and JAZZ APPRECIATION: 3-5pm, both at the Unitarian Church, Ellison Place, Newcastle.
To Book telephone 0191 2126100.
You could turn up on the day without booking, but it’s better to book.

Samadhi @ The Bridge Hotel. October 26

Krzysztof Urbanski (tenor & soprano saxophones), Dominic J Marshall (keyboards), Nick Jurd (double bass), Sam Gardner (drums) & Sam Bell (percussion)
(Review by Russell/photo courtesy of Ken Drew).
London-based Sam Gardner (the man has relocated from the Leeds Hothouse to the easy-to-crack jazz scene in the Smoke!) made a welcome return to Splinter @ The Bridge with Samadhi, his youthful quintet. Remarkably, Dominic J Marshall (keyboards, baseball cap and prodigious talent) and bassist Nick Jurd (the look of a lower sixth former, the twenty-something trans-Atlantic tour veteran), recent BMus graduates both, have tour itineraries stretching into 2015 and beyond.

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Jam Session @ The Globe.

Stuart Finden (gtr); Fiona Finden (ten/vcl); Andrew Porritt (bs); + Ann Alex, Barry Keatings (vcl); Dave Parker (bs); Dave Speake (dms).
(Review by Lance).
Jam sessions - irrespective of whether you call them Jams, Workshops or Blow as You Pleases, at the end of the day it's open season for all who wish to put up or shut up - few take the latter option.
Today was low key - drummer missing and no hungry hornmen champing at the reed to despatch their contemporaries to the cutting room floor.

Hey Hepcats! Tune to Radio 4

Cab Calloway’s jive talk will fill the airwaves on Tuesday (Oct 28th), Radio 4, 11:30am.  Lemn Sissay looks at the 1938 publication of the Hepster’s Dictionary in Dr Hepcat and the Hepster’s Dictionary and along the way talks to Calloway’s daughter Camay Murphy and grandson Christopher Calloway-Brooks. That’s Tuesday (October 28th), Radio 4, 11:30am. You dig?
Russ.

Memories of Jack Bruce

The Club A Gogo must have been the place to be. The Animals, Hendrix and Cream. Then there was a who’s who of the jazz and blues scene ascending the stairs – was it second floor or maybe third? Years later, the legendary venue, long-since closed, saw service as a bus drivers’ canteen before the demolition men moved in.
Years later Jack Bruce returned to Newcastle (Cream an acrimonious memory) to play Newcastle City Hall with Carla Bley. Then the Jack Bruce Band graced the same hall. The Park Hotel, Tynemouth played unlikely host to Bruce. The ballroom packed, Jack with the Norman Beaker Band tore it up (the great voice perhaps in decline, the bass-playing anything but). In recent years there was the Tyne Theatre show (Ken was there). Tony Williams’ Lifetime was surely the band to see. Here’s a question…did any Bebop Spoken Here readers get to hear them?           
Russell.

Guitar Gurus - Steve Glendinning & Mark Williams @ Jazz Café. October 25.

Steve Glendinning, Mark Williams (gtrs)
(Review by Lance/photo by Mike Tilley.).
The Jazz Café was crowded - and why shouldn't it be? Two of the best jazz guitarists performing in tandem was something to look forward to. 
They didn't disappoint!
Kicking off with Straight No Chaser, it quickly became obvious that there'd be no coasting tonight and no falling from grace although the second tune was indeed Steve Swallow's Falling Grace- reflective, melancholy, even dreamlike.
Hermitage, by Pat Metheny and a couple of standards - Smoke Gets in Your Eyes and My Favourite Things - made for a satisfying first set.

Saturday, October 25, 2014

RIP Jack Bruce

Jack Bruce, composer, bass guitarist, vocalist, died today  (October 25) age 71. Perhaps best known as part of super-group Cream, Bruce was not without his jazz leanings. He always claimed that he was a jazz man at heart and he certainly played and recorded with many jazz and blues legends starting north of the border with Jim McHarg's Scotsville Jazz Band. Alexis Korner's Blues Incorporated, John Mayall's Blues Breakers and Tony Williams' Lifetime were just some of the many musicians he was associated with.
A bass guitar icon, the heavenly rhythm section will be rockin' tonight.
Rest In Peace.
Obituary.
Lance.

CD Review: No Fast Food – In Concert

Phil Haynes (drums), David Liebman (tenor & soprano saxophones, flute) & Drew Gress (double bass).
(Review by Russell).
In a long career drummer Phil Haynes has worked with many of the leading lights in contemporary jazz including Anthony Braxton, Don Byron and Paul Smoker. He has recently released a recording of his trio No Fast Food featuring Dave Liebman (reeds) and Drew Gress (double bass) captured in stunning form on location in Rochester, NY State and Milheim, Pennsylvania.

Ray Harris & The Fusion Experience @ Hoochie Coochie October 24.

Ray Harris (keys/vcl); Ben Holloway (gtr); Marcus Cordock (bs gtr); Harry Pope (dms); Hannabiell Sanders (perc).
(Review by Lance/photo from Les Aitch on F/b)).
Newcastle was the place to be last night with at least three mouthwatering gigs - hopefully some of my colleagues covered the others - hopefully!
Ray Harris is no stranger to Hoochie and the addition of Hannabiell on percussion didn't hurt at all!
The name says it all "Fusion Experience" for this was indeed a genre fusing experience with even a bit of Chopin (maybe) thrown in the mix.

Friday, October 24, 2014

RIP Vic Ash.

Simon Spillett sent me the following sad news.
"With great sadness I can confirm that legendary clarinettist and saxophonist Vic Ash passed away this afternoon (October 24), aged 84.
We have lost not only one of the founding fathers of British modern jazz, and a truly gifted instrumentalist, but one of the true gentleman of the music profession. His talent, wit and wisdom will be missed by everyone who knew him - fans and fellow players alike.
Deepest condolences to Vic's wife Helen and their family.
Vic Ash (March 9 1930-October 24 2014)."

DIACHRONICX @ The Jazz Café

There will be a voice-guitar duo gig by our new project called DIACHRONICX on Saturday the 29th of November at the Jazz Cafe. This is Stephen Glendinning on guitar and myself, Gabriele Heller, on voice.

Fireworks @ The Elephant.

Following the huge success of the 20 piece Strictly Big Band this month it’s a small group on the fifth of November. The Virtuoso Jazz Trio features “Dr Jazz” James Birkett on guitar and Tony Abell from the band Alter Ego on bass. Expect a masterclass from the star of the show, Canadian Octogenarian George McDonald. George, as the original principal clarinettist with the Northern Sinfonia, is no stranger to the music of Bach or Benny Goodman. The concert in the Elephant pub starts at 8pm and admission is £5 on the door.
John T.

CD Review: Cat Conner – Cat House

Cat Conner (vocals, shaker); John Chiodini (guitar); Gene Cipriano (clarinet, bass clarinet, tenor, bass oboe); Tom Ranier (piano); Chuck Berghofer (bass); Joe LaBarbera (drums); Ron Stout (trumpet); Dick Nash (trombone); Stephanie O’Keefe (French horn); Bob Carr (bassoon, bass clarinet, alto flute).
(Review by Ann Alex).
This is a very enjoyable CD of quality jazz singing and skilled playing, and it is a bit different from the offerings of jazz standards on other discs.  Forget the often sung Summertime and Cry Me A River – here are love songs which you don’t hear so often, such as Throw Me Away (Michael Dees), and a Cole Porter tune with words written by the singer.  A track list will be the best way to describe the CD.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Mike Durham's Classic Jazz Party 2014 Program


A peak at the program for the 2014 Mike Durham's Classic Jazz Party (November 6-9) at the Village Inn, Cobalt Business Park, Nr Shiremoor,  North Tyneside, NE27 0BY, reveals that, despite the sad absence of Mike, Patti Durham and her team of helpers have come up with the goods in the form of a program that the late Mike would have been proud to have been associated with.
Details here and in "Pages" - RH column..
Ticket info in LH column.
Lance.

Preview: Nucleus With Leon Thomas -: Live 1970

Leon Thomas – vocals; Ian Carr - trumpet & flugelhorn; Karl Jenkins - oboe & piano; Brian Smith - soprano & tenor sax, flute; Chris Spedding – guitar; Jeff Clyne – bass; John Marshall – drums.
(Press Release - actual review by one of our team will be posted nearer the release date - Lance)
This is the first official release of the June 1970 Montreux Jazz Festival concert featuring trumpeter Ian Carr’s pioneering Nucleus performing with US vocalist Leon Thomas on a set of Thomas’ own repertoire including ‘The Creator Has A Master Plan’ (originally recorded in 1969 with Pharaoh Saunders). 

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

CD Review: Candi Staton - Life Happens


Another concept album! It's an emotional one tracing the start of a love affair from meeting to ending. Is there a reader who can't relate to this?
Candi Staton certainly takes us along the bumpy road to love. The hesitation of the first meeting (I Ain't Easy To Love). The attraction, the desire (Close to You). The needs (The Commitment). Foreverness (For Eternity). True love never runs smooth (Even the Bad Times Are Good). Enter the Other Woman (Beware, She's After your Man - YouTube clip). And so it goes on until, finally, she looks to the future and maybe the relationship can survive (A Better World Coming).

CD Review:Miguel Zenón - Identities Are Interchangeable.

Miguel Zenón Quartet: Zenón (alt); Luis Perdomo (pno); Hans Glawischnig (bs); Henry Cole (dms).
Identities Big Band: As above + Will Vinson, Michael Thomas (alt); Samir Zarif, John Ellis (ten); Chris Cheek (bar); Mat Jodrel, Michael Rodriguez, Alex Norris, Jonathon Powell (tpt); Ryan Keberle, Alan Ferber, Tim Albright (tmb).
(Review by Lance).
To say this is an unusual record is perhaps an understatement - it's unique! It's also compelling and absolutely brilliant. So if I, as a born and bred Englishman, like it, imagine how I'd feel if I was a Puerto Rican living in New York!
Zenón - four times winner of DB's Critics' Poll in the Rising Star Alto Sax Category (how many wins does it take to graduate from the Rising Star Category?!) - is well worthy of such acclaim. On the strength of this CD we can add composer, and not just as a rising star!

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Super Band Show at Bonbar Featuring Jason Isaacs.

Top crooner Jason Isaacs fronts 7/8 piece band at Bonbar (Assembly Rooms, Fenkle St., Newcastle, NE1 5XU) on November 16. A rare opportunity to wine and dine and see and hear this ace performer in a cabaret style setting. Full details in top right hand column.
Lance.

Jazz North East & Splinter @ the Bridge present: Engine Room Favourites

Martin Archer & Mick Beck (reeds); Graham Clark (violin); Corey Mwamba (vibes); Laura Cole (keyboards); Seth Bennett (bass); Steve Dinsdale (retired hurt), Peter Fairclough, Johnny Hunter, Walt Shaw (percussion). Star Rating *****
 (Review by Steve H./Photo courtesy of Ken Drew.)
When I first heard about this Decatet playing at the Splinter gig I was concerned that the band members might outnumber the audience. I needn’t have worried one of the percussionists (Steve Dinsdale) had to drop out (eaten on the way up according Martin Archer) so now reduced to a nontet the numbers were once again in favour of the audience. As it happens a more than reasonable sized crowd were treated to a memorable gig. Those risk adverse jazz fans who stayed away missed out on one of the most enjoyable and creative gigs of the year.  

Monday, October 20, 2014

CD Review: Max Luthert - Orbital.

Max Luthert (bs); Gareth Lochrane (fl); Duncan Eagles (ten); Seb Pipe (alt0; Matt Robinson (pno); Dave Hamblett (dms).
(Review by Lance).
I suppose one could call this a concept album. Nine original tunes (will jazz ever seduce a wider audience on original tunes alone?) Luthert's particular conception here is to put together music with certain sounds and structures that had been interesting him for a number of years. A number of the tunes are named after phrases or places in books he had been reading. He doesn't mention the actual books so perhaps the listener could try to guess - or better still, ignore all this ****, and enjoy some fine playing by six superb musicians.

Keith Stephen's Hot Club Trio w. Caroline Irwin @ Blaydon Jazz Club (Black Bull). October 19

Keith Stephen (gtr); Roly Veitch (gtr/vcl); Bruce Rollo (bs/vcl); Caroline Irwin (vcl).
(Review by Lance).
Caroline wasn't firing a ukulele from the hip or a cornet from the lip (at least not during the first set) but this modern day flapper did flash her eyes, and us males paralyse, with her vocals during this fine session at the Black Bull.
It had been a while since I visited the cosy home of Blaydon Jazz Club involving for me as it does trains and boats and planes or, to be more precise, buses, metros and pedestrian flyovers. The trip was worth it.
The room has an ambiance that lends itself to whatever the evening holds in store allowing for interaction been performer and listener.

Sunday, October 19, 2014

CD Review: Allison Au Quartet - The Sky Was Pale Blue Then Grey.

Allison Au (alt); Todd Pentney (pno/Rhodes/B3); Jon Maharaj (bs); Fabio Ragnelli (dms); Felicity Williams (voice tk 1).
(Review by Lance).
A Toronto based alto saxist/composer, Au plays in a quite delightful manner. Contemporary and fresh with an airy lilt to her playing the sound hints at such grandmasters of the instrument as Lee Konitz, Art Pepper or Paul Desmond. Yet Au is very much her own person. The individuality shines forth in her choice of notes, in particular the unusual intervals in her phrasing both as a player and a composer.

Clouts’ poetic jazz heads north by degree

You don’t need a degree in Social Anthropology from Cambridge University to play jazz but it certainly helped pianist and composer Philip Clouts.
South Africa-born Clouts, who brings his new quartet to the Jazz Café in Newcastle on Friday October 31 on their way to a Scottish tour, was just finishing his studies at Cambridge when he had an epiphany. Realising that he wanted to contribute to his own culture instead of studying other ones, he decided to concentrate on music and specifically the South African jazz style that had followed him to London, where he grew up.

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Paul Edis Sextet @ Gala Theatre, Durham, Mr Hipster tour, October 13

Paul Edis (piano), Graham Hardy (trumpet & flugelhorn), Graeme Wilson (tenor & baritone saxophones), Kieran Parnaby (trombone), Mick Shoulder (double bass) & Adam Sinclair (drums).
(Review by JC).
As BSH has already reviewed the Sextet's Mr Hipster CD and the album launch at Sage Gateshead, there is not an awful lot left to say except that everything Lance and Russell have said is true. What a great band, playing great compositions!
Durham is Paul Edis's home town so when the album review says that the opening number The Timothys has a township groove, this township is Durham. The band leader was in chatty form and opened his remarks by explaining that this concert was part of the Mr Hipster tour and naturally enough asked how many hipsters were in the hall. Of course, the jazz fans of Durham are far too hip to respond to that kind of question and I would have thought that less than half the audience put up their hands.

CD Review: Count Basie - Original Album Series

The Atomic Mr Basie (1957)*
One More Time (1958)
Count Basie Swings, Tony Bennett Sings (1959)
Chairman of the Board (1959)
Basie at Birdland (1961).
(Review by Lance).
OMG! Must check the calendar - it's either Xmas Day or it's my birthday! Unless my parents were lying, it's not but it sure feels like it!
Four albums by the most swinging band ever, plus one with a guy who could sing a bit, make this my album (box set) of the year. Sure the Ellington Band had more depth of colour, tonal textures etc. but even Gonsalves swinging his butt off at Newport 56 never got within an inch of this band for sheer excitement.

Friday, October 17, 2014

Beats & Pieces saxophonist Sam Healey wins International Jazz Soloist Award

(Press Release).
Efpi are proud to announce that Beats & Pieces Big Band saxophonist Sam Healey has won first prize in the Johnny Raducanu International Jazz Festival in Braila, Romania. Fourteen musicians from a wide variety of countries performed over two days, with Sam receiving the top prize of €5000 from the judging panel. The festival was established in memory of pianist Johnny Raducanu, who was born in Bralia and went on to become Romania's most famous jazz musician, performing with the likes of Art Farmer and Slide Hampton during his career.

Pilgrim St. Set @ Hoochie Coochie. October 16

Richard Burns (tpt); Gary Turner (ten); Paul Edis (pno); Paul Susans (bs gtr); Rob Walker (dms).
(Review by Lance).
Regular sessions whether they be weekly or, in this case, monthly are inevitably variable. Sometimes they [any band] blow your socks off whilst at other times they can appear blasé.
Nothing blasé about tonight - socks had to be retrieved before leaving.
In a word - awesome!

Thursday, October 16, 2014

CD Review: Ezra Weiss Sextet - Before You Know It.

Ezra Weiss (pno); Farnell Newton (tpt); John Nastos (alt); Devin Phillips (ten); Jon Shaw (bs); Christopher Brown (dms).
(Review by Lance.).
Recorded live in the Ivories Jazz Lounge, Portland, Oregon, late last year leader, pianist, arranger and composer Weiss has laid down his marker. Not many will surpass it. Comparisions could be made with the various Art Blakey bands and the hard hitting ensembles and solos bear this out. However, there's more subtle nuances here such as the mood swings and tempo changes that were less commonplace in Blakey's day.

Jam Session @ Ned's

Colin, Our Man in Hong Kong, sent me this clip of some musicians from the cruise ship Sapphire Princess jamming on Billie's Bounce at Ned Kelly's.
Wild!
Thanks Colin.
Lance.

Improvisation Workshop: Jazz Cafe: October 14

Andy Champion (bass guitar); Wesley Stephenson (drums); Zoe Gilby (voice) and others as mentioned below.
(Review by Ann).
Yet another review written without the benefit of note-taking, but how can you take notes during an improvisation session, I ask you?  Just not the done thing. I thoroughly enjoyed this event, but I think it requires a different mindset, relaxed and open, to get the most from this sort of thing.  It started me thinking about what music is all about, and I believe there are elements of drama involved too, and the experience is visual as well.

James Harrison Trio with Caroline Bagley @ Cherry Tree. October 15

Caroline Bagley (vcl/alt); James Harrison (pno); James Robson (bs gtr); Tom Chapman (dms).
(Review by Lance).
It was maybe 5/6 weeks back that Caroline Bagley made her Cherry Tree début with the James [Harrison] Gang. She impressed then but tonight was even better - particularly after the mic had been given an extra crank.
This was the 50th anniversary of Cole Porter's death and, although his music didn't feature in the set list, I'm sure he'd have appreciated the music and the food that was served up.
The trio played their CT signature tune - Food, Glorious Food and whilst I was enjoying the Home made black pudding, egg and brown sauce, Caroline was demanding the Frim Fram Sauce - I hope she got it!
My main course was Chargrilled bistro rump steak, café de Paris butter with traditional steak garnish and French fries.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

British Jazz Awards 2014

The Polling Stations are open for the 2014 British Jazz Awards - Not to be confused with the Parliamentary Jazz Awards.
These awards give you a choice of 4 musicians per category. However, you aren't limited to the chosen four you can make your own mind up and enter the deserving case in Column E.which makes me wonder why they go through the nomination process! 
The polls close at midnight on October 31.
To vote follow this link.
Lance.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

CD Review - Frank Kimbrough Quartet.

Frank Kimbrough (pno); Steve Wilson (alt/sop); Jay Anderson (bs); Lewis Nash (dms).
(Review by Lance).
It says much for this blog's attempt at world domination (dream on!) that we now receive as many, if not more, discs from Europe and the USA as we do from the UK! This probably explains why we never show in the Parliamentary's - a prophet without honour and all that boogie woogie!

This Coming Sunday @ Blaydon

Keith Stephen's Hot Club Trio with Caroline Irwin vcl/uke.
Keith's Django styled trio includes Bruce Rollo bass and Roly Veitch rhythm gtr/vcls, together with singer Caroline. Acoustic gypsy jazz plus a vivacious singer in a lively yet intimate cabaret style. 
Black Bull, Bridge St., Blaydon upon Tyne. 8pm. £5.

CD Review: Gypsies of Bohemia - GYP POP

Matthew Whitaker (vcl/rhythm gtr.); Jim Wallace (ld gtr); Frank Grime (bs); Sam Draper (dms); Andy Stamatakis-Brown (piano).
(Review by Lance).
If you heard the Gypsies of Bohemia at the Jazz Café on Saturday night you've probably already bought this CD although it must be said that, unlike so many bands, they didn't ram the merchandise down your throat. Nothing more off-putting! The gig was great and so is the CD.

Monday, October 13, 2014

CD Review: Paragon – Cerca

Peter Ehwald (tenor & soprano saxophones), Arthur Lea (Fender Rhodes), Matthias Nowak (double bass) & Jon Scott (drums)
(Review by Russell).
Cerca is Paragon’s third CD since forming a decade ago. Bandleaders Peter Ehwald and Arthur Lea wrote music independently of one another in advance of a two-day recording session in Cologne. Ten tracks made it onto the album and Lea’s agitated Fender Rhodes leads on the opening Cerca de Ti. Co-leader Ehwald enters on upper register tenor as Jon Scott keeps the nu-swing tempo rattling along.

Shatner’s Bassoon @ The Bridge Hotel. October 12

Craig Scott (guitar), Johnny Richards (keyboards), Michael Bardon (electric bass), Andrew Lisle (drums) & Joost Hendrickx (drums)
(Review by Russell/photo courtesy of Ken Drew)
In the last week Newcastle has seen audience numbers ranging from single figures to a sold out show turning people away. Sadly, this week’s Splinter promotion at the Bridge must be added to the former category. Leeds’ hothouse product Shatner’s Bassoon gave an intimate, if loud, performance to a drawing room select audience.

Am Jam @ The Globe. October 12

 (Review by Russell).
The Jazz Co-op’s inaugural second Sunday in the month jam session – Am Jam – at the Globe attracted a dozen or so participants and one or two listeners. Building work goes on apace and the upstairs jazz room is a work in progress. The décor, best described as ‘alternative’, is, if nothing else, distinctive (see photo).

RIP Brian Lemon?

It's reported on LondonJazzNews that pianist Brian Lemon died on Saturday. We await official confirmation of what will be a very sad loss.
Link.
Lance.

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Blue Jazz Quintet @ The Globe. Oct 11.

Chris Finch (keys); Karen Rann (sop sax); Jeff Smith (tenor sax); Dave Parker (bass); Michael Howard (drums)
(Review by Ann Alex).
The second jazz venture for the Globe.  Last week I excused myself for a truncated review because of too much dancing.  This time I found myself taking the door money, but I still managed to at least hear the band from my seat, thank goodness, rather like listening to a CD.  And the listening was good with the band in fine form. It was probably the last appearance for Chris, before he moves to Worcester, and he’s also to become a Dad very soon, so changes are afoot.

CD Review: Eyeshutight – Resonance

Johnny Tomlinson (piano & keyboards), Paul Baxter (double bass) & Kristoffer Wright (drums)
(Review by Russell)
Eyeshutight (Eyes Shut Tight) hit the road mid-October to promote their third album. Resonance resonates with the quiet, reflective approach adopted and refined by a tour-hardened, working trio. Formed in 2010 by bassist Paul Baxter, Eyeshutight draw on myriad influences; twentieth century classical composition, contemporary pop and the inevitable cult of small group jazz outfits – Keith Jarrett, the Bad Plus, EST.

Jazz and Poetry

Check out this Jazz Poetry site by Doctor Keith Armstrong - The Jingling Geordie.
Good stuff some of which has previously appeared here.
Illustrated by Peter Dixon.
Lance

Gypsies of Bohemia @ Jazz Café - October 11

Matthew Whitaker (vcl/rhythm gtr.); Jim Wallace (ld gtr/vcl); Frank Grime (bs/vcl); Sam Draper (dms/vcl); Andy Stamatakis-Brown (keys/melodica/vcl).
(Review by Lance/photo by Mike Tilley.)
The gig was sold out. If the scalpers had known they'd have made a killing! As it was the 60 or so aficionados with the savvy to buy in advance were privileged to witness a truly stunning performance.
In many ways, Hot Club has become today's Trad - recreating the sounds of Paris and Old Orleans with the verve and enthusiasm the original revivalists gave to the jazz of New Orleans.

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Paul Edis Trio @ The Jazz Café. October 10

Paul Edis (piano), Andy Champion (double bass) & Adam Sinclair (drums)
(Review by Russell).
On Pink Lane we heard On Green Dolphin Street, Like Some One in Love, Blue Bossa, Bluesette and more. Paul Edis’ Jazz Café residency is a rare treat. October’s treat drew the regulars and a few new faces. Bassist Mick Shoulder couldn’t make the gig due to a Marsden Jazz Festival booking for the all-conquering Djangologie. No matter, we had a half-decent dep at the Jazz Café – the one and only Andy Champion!
Edis goes from strength to strength; playing at the top of his game, dazzling two-handed improvisations, standards lovingly embraced. Champion stepped in, stepped forward and played killer solos in between working as a bass and drums super team with the one and only Adam Sinclair. Is there a better drummer on the scene? – no, end of.

Book Review: Bebop Babies - Edward Allan Faine & Kristina Leahy Celich


This is a strange, 22 page, board book aimed at very young children. I personally think it's quite magnificent although I'm not sure what the children will make of it.

The WEA and all that Jazz

Remember when Lance read about jazz at the WEA (Workers’ Educational Association) in a brochure that he found on a bus?  Well he wasn’t imagining it, the WEA is putting on 2 jazz courses, starting on Thursday October 30, and running weekly for 7 weeks.  From 1-3pm there is a class called An Improvisation For Musicians. This is a universal approach suitable for any style, blues, rock, classical as well as jazz.  You need some facility with your instrument and a basic knowledge of chords, but you don’t need advanced music theory.

New CD/ From NCRO.

(Info from Phil Rutherford).
Earlier this year, the New Century Ragtime Orchestra recorded their second CD Singin’ in the Bathtub which is available on the Lake Records jazz label. To celebrate this event NCRO are holding a launch concert on Friday October 24  - and the good news is that it’s only a fiver to get in!
The venue is the upstairs lounge of the Millstone pub, Haddricks Mill Road, South Gosforth, Newcastle upon Tyne NE3 1QL.  The Millstone is a comfortable real ale pub with a large car park, and it’s also only a few minutes’ walk from South Gosforth metro station or via the 55 bus from Haymarket which drops you off at the door.

Friday, October 10, 2014

When You've Gotta Go You've Gotta Go Man Go!

Most of the great composers have a Funeral March or two on their CV (and of course a Wedding March - after a few years the two are usually interchangeable), some even have a Requiem Mass, so, bidding farewell to a loved one with music is a time honoured tradition. The Irish wake is just such an occasion where the departed is sent on his/her way with Guinness inspired versions of Danny Boy, Galway Bay and the Isle of Innisfree.
Jazz, of course, is not without its own funereal music going way back to the early days in New Orleans when Oh Didn't He Ramble, The Saints and maybe Saint James' Infirmary were the favourites.

The DB Jazz Project - Bridge Hotel October 9

David Keighley (saxes); Thomas MacMillan (gtr); Adrian Sander (bs gtr); Ben Grant (dms).
(Review by Lance).
It was good to see a crowded room of predominantly young people for this launching of DB Jazz Project - a new band albeit one with a few gigs under its belt already.
No shortage of technique amongst the quartet - enhanced (or otherwise) as it was by a distracting screen projection and some electronic sorcery - Keighley can certainly blow tenor and MacMillan knows his way around the fretboard. Likewise drums and bass put the boot in making for an explosive start. The influences were many and the material varied. Coltrane, Brecker - even Snake Davis - all provided the ammunition either directly or by suggestion.

Thursday, October 09, 2014

Whiplash

Controversial jazz film due out in January 2015 - The Glenn Miller Story it ain't!
Have a look at this clip.
Lance.

CD Review: Jochen Rueckert - We Make the rules

Mark Turner (ten); Lage Lund (gtr); Matt Penman (bs); Jochen Rueckert (dms).
(Review by Lance).
Multifaceted German drummer Rueckert not only "makes the rules" but is also known for his work in electronic music using the alias of Wolff Parkinson White. He also has a long running book series - Read the Rueckert about travel observations and pictures of hotel rooms. Well, we did say multifaceted!

Wednesday, October 08, 2014

Mick Cantwell Holds Court @ Henry’s Swing Club. October 7

(Review by Russell).
First Tuesday, Brandling Villa, the Lounge Lizards, sitters-in welcome. The South Gosforth hostelry did less business than usual. A T-Bone shuffle, Junior Wells, an excitable Crossroads, a sitters-in Clapton-JJ Cale jam, a stripped-down punk cover merchant – The Clash/White Stripes – and a showroom (pub) full of Fender Strats, Gibsons and rhythm section hardware. 

Kanani Quartet Royal Albert Hall Café. October 4

Kourosh Kanani (gtr); Jeremie Coullon (gtr); Eleazar Spreafico (bs).
(Review by Peter Ninnim). 
Our autumn trip to London this year was primarily to see Manon at the Royal Ballet but no trip to London would be complete without  a good helping of jazz. Internet searches revealed that the Café at the Albert Hall had several jazz events at weekends, all of which were free.
Expecting nothing (free concert?) we arrived early and listened in awe to the warm up and then after a short gap to the actual performance.
The band bills themselves as Gypsy Jazz but they are so much more. Genuine Gypsy jazz certainly but with lots of other influences.

Cherry Tree Update

I wanted to let you know that we have decided to close the restaurant on a Monday night.  However we are moving the music night to the Wednesday.  We think that this will improve attendances.
The first three gigs are as follows:
15th October  The James Harrison Trio (James Harrison, Anth Ord, Tom Chapman) with Caroline Bagley - vocalist and tenor player.  She performed here a few weeks ago and received a great reception. She is a great talent.
22nd October   Graham Hardy with Paul Edis, Neil Harland and Rob Walker
29th October    An encore of the 15th Oct gig.
Three great concerts to kick off a new season for us.
Peter.
Cherry Tree Restaurant, 9 Osborne Rd., Jesmond. 0191 2399924. 7:45pm. No cover charge.

Jazz Café Jam Session October 7.

Peter Gilligan (pno); Paul Grainger (bs); Paul Wight (dms) + Richard Herdman/Bradley Johnston (gts); Matthew MacKellar (dms); Ray Johnson (tpt/flg); Will (vcl); Joel Brown (pno).
(Review by Lance).
There's always an air of anticipation prior to a jam session. Who will turn up? Will they cut it?
Tonight they cut it!
The trio provided the "Overture to a Jam Session" with My Romance; Hampton Hawes' Sonora and a sensitive rendition of Prelude to a Kiss. Sound! No problems in the engine room apart from Winnie Atwell's "other piano"!
Opening the fretting for the visitors was Bradley Johnston and a rather doomy piece entitled Saga of something or other. Not a foot-tapper. Nor was Scrapple From the Apple unless you wanted to risk breaking your ankle - it was fast.
Change of drummer and conversion of kit from southpaw to orthodox.

Tuesday, October 07, 2014

Haste/ Kinsella/Noble/Batchelor @ Newcastle University. October 3










Haste (right): Ingrid Laubrock (tenor sax); Hannah Marshall (cello); Veryan Weston (piano).
Kinsella/Noble/Batchelor (left): Lauren Kinsella (voice); Chris Batchelor (trumpet); Liam Noble (piano)
(Review by Steve H/ photos courtesy of Ken Drew.)
Due to the late arrival of the first band who had been taken suddenly hungry in a local restaurant we were treated to an impromptu solo performance from free piano jazz wunderkid Veryan Weston.
A suitably replete Kinsella, Noble and Batchelor trio returned from their gastronomic adventure to take the stage for the first half of the scheduled programme. Kinsella is a vocal virtuoso  using the full range of her voice to improvise extensively. 

Dean Stockdale Quartet @ The Lit & Phil. October 6

Dean Stockdale (piano), James Birkett (guitar), Neil Harland (double bass) & Paul Smith (drums)
(Review by Russell.photo courtesy of Ken Drew).
Heavy rain all day long, the taps ran dry late afternoon. The break in the weather augured well for Dean Stockdale’s appearance at the Lit & Phil. A good number of folk made the effort to get along and were rewarded with a first rate concert of jazz piano.

Monday, October 06, 2014

The DB Jazz Project. Dave Keighley and Ben Grant's new jazz funk rock dream quartet

Based in the north east. We both love a lot of types of music and have formed this band based on that but always played in our DB Jazz style. We picked tunes we love and also have some originals and continue to write new material. This band is in its birth and will be around a long time. Cooking solos and great jazz, funk grooves alongside some avant garde tunes also. A very wide slice of great music.
Here's our live DB Jazz take on Walking on the Moon by The Police.

Dave & Ben.
Launch Thursday October 9 @ Bridge Hotel, Newcastle. 8pm. Free.

Blue-Eyed Hawk @ the Bridge Hotel. October 5

Lauren Kinsella (voice/keys), Alex Roth (guitar, effects, voice), Laura Jurd (trumpet, synth, voice), Corrie Dick (drums, percussion, voice).
(Review by Lance/photo courtesy of Ken Drew).
Third appearance by Blue-Eyed Hawk within these hallowed pages, second showing in Newcastle by Kinsella this week and a first rate performance at last night's Splinter session at the Bridge Hotel.
Hugh Cochrane gave a fair assessment of their début CD Under the Moon, I was present at the CD launch at Kings Place last month and, even as I type, Steve H may have words winging their way to me re Lauren's gig at Kings Hall on Thursday (the girl certainly moves amongst the crowned heads!).

Sunday, October 05, 2014

Jazz Co-op: Grand Launch of Upstairs Performance Area at the Globe Djangologie & Lindy Jazz: Saturday October (4)









Jim Birkett (guitar); Giles Strong (guitar); Emma Fisk (violin); Mick Shoulder (bass)
(Review by Ann Alex/photos Ken Drew).
And what a great launch this was, with lively music and dancing, it was the Hot Club de Globe! There was even a demonstration of shimmying and now that I’ve tried it, all I need is a sister named Kate!
Julie, leader of the Lindy dance group, started proceedings with a lesson in their kind of dancing, which was terrific fun and not too difficult.  Charleston-like steps, handclapping, finger-snapping, twists, turns and shimmies galore.  By the time the band came on at about 8pm, the room was full.

CD Review: Mark Elf Returns 2014

Mark Elf (gtr); David Hazeltine (pno); Peter Washington (bs); Lewis Nash (dms); Steven Kroon (perc. on 1 track).
(Review by Lance).
The world is full of great jazz musicians and, sadly, some of these don't achieve the recognition they deserve beyond their own shores. Mark Elf may be just such an unsung hero - at least in the UK - despite a career that has included record dates with Ray Brown, Clark Terry and Ed Thigpen and appeared on stage with Dizzy, Jimmy Heath, Lou Donaldson and, no doubt, countless others.

Paul Gowland & Peter Gilligan @ The Jazz Café. Oct. 4

Paul Gowland (ten/alt); Peter Gilligan (pno).
(Review by Lance).
The duo format is one of the most intriguing forms of music - it can ultimately be a disaster or a triumph. Without the cushion of a rhythm section to steady the ship, the players have to be on their metal to ensure they don't drift too far apart. In the duo situation they're both in the front line - no horn/drummer/piano fours to pad things out, only the challenge of stimulating each other and converting two halves into a whole.

Strictly Smokin' Big Band @ Ashington Jazz Club. October 1.

(Review by Peter S.)
The October meeting at the AJC was a unique experience as this was the first occasion that a Band as big as this had taken to our stage and floor. It was not easy to accommodate all sections of the band so the front line of 5 saxes and 4 trombones were placed on the dance floor with 4 in the trumpet quartet behind supported by the keyboard. 2 guitars(bass and rhythm) and drum kit. The arrangement displayed the band in an agreeable formation and with the music stands in front and the musicians impeccably dressed, we  looked at a very professional outfit reminiscent of the Bands from the days of Swing.

Saturday, October 04, 2014

Shiver 3 @ Central Bar, Gateshead. Oct. 2.

Chris Sharkey (guitar), Andy Champion (electric bass) & Joost Hendrickx (drums)
As part of their current eight venue tour, Shiver 3 made a welcome return visit to the Central Bar’s upper room and its ‘compact’ performance space.  In a  very busy week for Jazz in the North East,  the audience grew to, not quite the numbers we saw for their previous visit a year ago, but, nevertheless, the appreciative audience were duly rewarded by the same energy emanating from the trio who still sounded as fresh and in-your-face (well, ears really!) as ever J  With their driving rhythms, incessant bass action and Sharkey’s ever-present swirling guitar solos or supportive block chords/ambient sounds - overlaid  (or underpinned?) with electronic treatments  (guitar, bass and drums each had a selection of electronic devices to call on as required) - the sound was as strong and loud as ever!      
Good gig.
Ken Drew.

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About this blog - contact details.

Bebop Spoken Here -- Here, being the north-east of England -- centred in the blues heartland of Newcastle and reaching down to the Tees Delta and looking upwards to the Land of the Kilt.
Not a very original title, I know; not even an accurate one as my taste, whilst centred around the music of Bird and Diz, extends in many directions and I listen to everything from King Oliver to Chick Corea and beyond. Not forgetting the Great American Songbook the contents of which has provided the inspiration for much great jazz and quality popular singing for round about a century.
The idea of this blog is for you to share your thoughts and pass on your comments on discs, gigs, jazz - music in general. If you've been to a gig/concert or heard a CD that knocked you sideways please share your views with us. Tell us about your favourites, your memories, your dislikes.
Lance (Who wishes it to be known that he is not responsible for postings other than his own and that he's not always responsible for them.)
Contact: lanceliddle@gmail.com I look forward to hearing from you.

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