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Bebop Spoken There

Orrin Evans: “I’d like to see a younger audience and an audience that looks more like me at the clubs.” – (Down Beat November 2014).

Kevin Flanagan: "Besides, I'd got sick of playing jazz to people who looked like my father." - (Straight No Chaser Issue 0ne Summer 1988.)

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Today Wednesday August 16

Afternoon
Vieux Carre Jazzmen - Crescent Club, 1 Hudleston, Cullercoats NE30 3OS. 1pm. Free.
Maine Street Jazzmen - Tynemouth Metro Station, Station Tce., Tynemouth NE30 4RE. 1pm. Free.
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Evening.
New Orleans Jazz at the Village Hall - Springwell Village Community Venue, Fell Rd., Gateshead NE9 7RP. 8:15pm. £3.
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Take it to the Bridge - The Globe, 11 Railway St., Newcastle NE4 7AD. £1. 8pm.
Billy's Acoustic Blues - Billy Bootleggers, 28 Nelson St., Newcastle NE1 5AN. 9pm. Free (weekly).
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Tees Hot Club - Cleveland Bay, 718 Yarm Rd., Eaglescliffe TS16 0JE. 9pm. Free.
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To the best of our knowledge, details of the above events are correct but may be subject to alteration.

Monday, May 22, 2017

Alter Ego @ Blaydon Jazz Club - May 21

Keith Robinson (alto saxophone), Niall Armstrong (tenor saxophone & flute), Dave Hignett (trumpet & flugelhorn), Andy Hawking (keyboards), Tony Abell (bass) & David Francis (drums)
(Review by Russell/Photos courtesy of Roly Veitch).
You can hang your pork pie hat on some bands - Alter Ego is one of them. An accomplished sextet with a pad of original compositions and smart arrangements of classic material, Alter Ego play gigs for the fun of it with a commendable no nonsense approach. Alto saxophonist Keith Robinson pulls together a set list confident that his band mates will be up to the job with some of them contributing one or two charts which proudly take their place alongside tried and tested numbers. This Blaydon Jazz Club date found the sextet in fine form.
Lockjaw DavisRed Snapper dusted off the cobwebs - the horns blowing, the rhythm section driven by the ever-reliable David Francis. A Latin feel to Get Back In allowed Dave Hignett to warm-up his flugelhorn with the Tyne Valley Big Band MD switching between trumpet and flugel throughout the evening. JJ Johnson’s In Walked Horace heard from Niall Armstrong (tenor), Hignett’s trumpet, and the amiable Andy Hawking (keyboards). The writers in the band bring tunes to rehearsals and they invariably make it onto the set list. One such, Armstrong’s Mustard Mash, another, Andy Hawking’s Scriabin Scraps (likely as not inspired by Alexander Scriabin’s investigations into atonal concepts) and bassist Tony Abell’s Llangranog Blues worked a treat. It would be interesting to hear how other bands (regional or otherwise) would approach these tunes. Perhaps Robinson and co could offer to loan out a tune or two?
Tenor man Niall Armstrong plays an occasional flute. Sudden Samba presented an opportunity to play it and he did just that with Hawking weighing in on keys and Francis rattling a samba rhythm.  The sextet’s take on Coltrane’s Naima perhaps lacked something of the intensity associated with that of its composer, whereas Armstrong’s Undertone worked brilliantly revealing a multi-layered tonal exercise demanding the full concentration of all on the stand. Budini returned to the familiar, similarly Stanley Turrentine’s Sugar and two enjoyable sets came to a close with Bobby Watson’s fascinating ‘perpetual motion’ composition Wheel Within a Wheel.
Blaydon Jazz Club’s June concert (Sunday 18) presents the brilliant guitar duo James Birkett and Bradley Johnston playing anything and everything from Eddie Lang to Chick Corea to a handful of original compositions. World class jazz guitar on your doorstep…who would believe it?   
Russell.                 

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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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