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Bebop Spoken There

Eubie Blake: “He [Willie The Lion Smith] played some tricky rhythms, if he'd seen them written down, he'd have said "Oh I couldn't play that", but he played them!” – (DownBeat May 24, 1973).

Mel Lewis: “They [kids] think the word "technique" means speed. The word "technique" just means the way you do something, that's all.” – (DownBeat July 19. 1973).

Today Sunday April 22

Afternoon

Musicians Unlimited - Park Inn, Park Road, Hartlepool TS26 9HU. Tel: 01429 233126. 12 noon. Free.

More Jam - The Globe, 11 Railway Street, Newcastle NE4 7AD. 3:00pm. Free.

Somethin’ Blue - Vesuvio, 3a Houndgate, Darlington DL1 5RL. 5:00pm. Tel: 01325 788564. Matt Case (saxophone) & Mike Hepple (guitar).

Evening

Strictly Smokin' Big Band - Hoochie Coochie, 54 Pilgrim Street, Newcastle NE1 8SF. 5:30pm (4:00pm doors). £8.00.

Teduloca - The Globe, Railway Street, Newcastle NE4 7AD. 7:30pm. £10 (£8 in adv.)

Kevin Eland - Quakerhouse, Mechanics’ Yard, Darlington DL3 7QF. 6:00pm. £5.00. Darlington Jazz Club.

Bradley Johnston - The Fire Station, High Street West, Sunderland SR1 3DT. Tel: 0191 594 7241. 6:00pm. Free.

Scott Wainwright - Billy Bootleggers, 28 Nelson Street, Newcastle NE1 5AN. 8:30pm. Free.

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

Sunday, April 22, 2018

Groove-a-matics @ The Magnesia Bank - April 21

Mick Cantwell (tenor saxophone, harmonica, vocals), Johnny Whitehill (guitar), ? (keyboards); John Morgan (bass) & Barry Race (drums)
(Review by Russell) 
It was back in September 2012 that a blues band from the north east of England flew across the Atlantic to scoop the coveted ‘New Brunswick Battle of the Blues’ award. Then a four-piece, they returned home to continue to gig in pubs and clubs and at prestigious blues festivals. It’s what is expected of a blues band, fame and riches weren’t about to come their way, so Groove-a-matics kept on keepin’ on.
Last night at the Maggie Bank (Magnesia Bank) in North Shields, Groove-a-matics kept on keepin’ on. The now five-piece band – with the addition of keyboards – soundchecked to a loyal following, otherwise, the well-known Camden Street hostelry was very quiet. Bar staff said Saturdays, of late, had been unusually quiet. A ‘lively’ pint of Three Kings’ ‘Billy Mill’ (4%) brewed just along the road, seats were ‘take-your-pick’ with so few in as the best blues band around was ready to go.

Three Deaths - RIP Nathan, Stan and Maurice

Sadly, I overlooked these three deaths. Each one an iconic figure in their own way.
The links below will make you realise just why they were so highly thought of. Not just as musicians, but as human beings. May they all Rest In Peace, they were cornerstones of our music.
Lance.
Nathan Davis - American saxist and Jazz Educator - 81 (April 8).
Stan Reynolds - British trumpet player and bandleader - 92 (April14).
Maurice Reedus Jr. aka 'The Sax Man' - Legendary street performer in Cleveland, Ohio - 65 (April 16).

CD Review: McLenty Hunter Jr. - The Groove Hunter

(Review by Lance)
A well-titled album for  Hunter does indeed set down some good grooves on this post hard-bop disc. 
The drummer, who studied with the late Grady Tate and went on to earn his Masters at Julliard under Carl Allen, spent three years as a member of the Kenny Garrett Quintet as well as performing with such heavies as Lou Donaldson, Curtis Fuller, Javon Jackson and Eric Reed. 
Pianist Reed is on the album and plays magnificently. The opening track, Blue Chopsticks, composed by Herbie Nichols has Reed paying tribute to Nichols, who died of Leukemia in 1963. Like so many great artists in whatever field, Nichols' true status was only acknowledged after his death and even now, I don't think he's had a mention in the DownBeat Hall of Fame. On Reed's showing here, he [Reed] might get there first.
There's also some nice piano on 3 tracks by Sanders.

Saturday, April 21, 2018

Emma Fisk/James Birkett Duo @ Gala Theatre, Durham - April 20. A 3000 word review!

At BSH we are fortunate in, not only having writers and reviewers with perception and insight, but also some ace photographers such as Ken Drew, Mike Tilley and Malcolm Sinclair. The latter snapper is responsible for these excellent shots of the Emma Fisk/James Birkett concert held yesterday at the Gala Theatre, Durham. Although the concert was sold out, no one has yet provided any words so, working on the premise that a picture paints a 1000 words, here are 3000 of them.
Lance.
PS: I read somewhere recently that, although the Gala's capacity is 120, they only provide seating for 100. My correspondent (I'm not sure who it was as I've lost the original message) suggested that, as the lunchtime sessions are invariably sold out, it would make financial sense for the theatre to buy another 20 chairs. Sounds a good idea to me!

CD Review: Fergus McCreadie Trio - Turas.

Fergus McCreadie (piano/compositions); David Bowden (bass); Stephen Henderson (drums).
(Review by Lance). 
Our reviewer from north of the border recently reported on a live gig by the Fergus McCreadie Trio at the Eyemouth Hippodrome and was very impressed as you will gather from Kay's review. Less than a week later, they were playing on the concourse at GIJF. Unfortunately, such is the nature of multi-stage festivals, I was committed elsewhere and missed what I'm sure was a very lively set.
This disc allows me to play catch-up as the material played at the gigs will, I'm sure, equate to what they play here on this, their debut album.

Friday, April 20, 2018

CD Review: Sundae + Mr Goessl - When You’re Smiling

Kate Voss (vocals, melodica, bells); Jason Goessl (guitars, chimes); Adrian Van Batenburg (drums, tracks 1 4 7 8 10 12 14); Sam Esecson (drums, perc, tracks 2 5) Robb Davidson, Jason Goessl (backup vocal track 12)
(Review by Ann Alex)
Although there are lots of jazzy characteristics, in a record store (remember them?) this CD would probably be in the rack marked ‘Easy Listening’ which is really what it is. 
Ms. Voss (aka Sundae) has a suggestion of Billie Holiday in her voice and she was actually voted Seattle Jazz Vocalist of the Year in 2017.
Despite this accolade, I found the jazz content to be quite low which begs the question as to what is jazz and what isn't? Particularly when it comes to singers.

Paul Edis Trio @ St James’ & St Basil’s - April 19

Paul Edis (piano); Andy Champion (double bass); Adam Sinclair (drums)
(Review & photo of hymn board by Russell/band photos courtesy of Jerry.) 
On a beautiful spring evening, St James’ and St Basil’s Church in the Newcastle suburb of Fenham presented the first in a new series of jazz concerts – ‘Jazz at J’s & B’s’ – featuring the brilliant Paul Edis Trio. The church recently acquired a superb Kawai piano and the concert series’ promoter did what anyone with ears would do…engage the services of pianist Paul Edis. This inaugural concert – let’s call it a ‘gig’ – attracted promising numbers; some familiar jazz gig-goers, some parishioners and perhaps one or two curious locals. The curious local and/or the non-jazz fan could be forgiven if they thought the church service hymn numbers attached to a stone pillar would form the basis of the evening’s proceedings (see photo)!     

The Strictly Smokin' Sessions @ The Jazz Café - April 19

Keith Robinson (tenor); Steve Summers (alto, baritone, clarinet); Jamie Toms (tenor, alto, flute); Matt Forster (bass clarinet); Michael Lamb (trumpet); Pete Tanton (trumpet, flugel); David Barnes (trombone); Graham Don (piano); Pawel Jedrzejewski (guitar); Michael Whent (bass guitar); Guy Swinton (drums); Alice Grace, F'reez (vocal).
(Review/photo by Lance - photos by Ken Drew to follow.).
Afterwards, Michael Lamb said to me, "That was different". Steve Summers said, "That was interesting". Two succinct comments that practically wrote the review for me. The above musicians, drawn from the 19 piece Strictly Smokin' Big Band, appeared in a variety of permutations to play various original compositions by Pete Tanton, Jamie Toms. Pawel Jedrzejewski - some worked better than others. Alice Grace and F'reez had but one number each and, sad to say, the balance didn't do either of them any favours.

CD Review: Sheila Jordan with The Brian Kellock Trio and The Tori String Quartet - Live In London

Sheila Jordan (vocals); Brian Kellock (piano); Calum Gourlay (bass); Stu Ritchie (drums)
Guillem Calvo (1st violin); Helena Massip ( 2nd violin); David Frankel (viola); Hannah Marshall (cello)
(Review by Ann Alex)
Here I am having this CD signed by Sheila Jordan at GIJF 2018. Sheila signed it ‘Love & Jazz, Keep Singing’, which I intend to do, let Lance and Russell pretend (?) to wince as much as they like. The CD is similar in many ways to the GIJF performance (with different instrumentalists), but listening to a CD is a different experience, with no distractions such as stage lights and so on. It was recorded live in 2010 at the Pizza Express Jazz Club, Soho, and issued again as a limited edition for GIJF 2018. Sheila’s amusing chat is included in an edited form.

Thursday, April 19, 2018

Chicago Radio DJ Tunes in to South Shields

It's not often the Shields Gazette posts a photo of Duke Ellington and his Orchestra - in fact, the photo that appeared in Monday's edition may well have been the first picture of Duke in the 169 years of its existence! So what prompted this near full page spread? Well, Chicago based DJ and big band/jazz fan, Denny Farrell hosts a long-running late night radio show in the windy city - the sort of station where I could imagine a caller ringing up in the early hours and saying "Play Misty for me".
The Gazette connection came about via Farrell's friendship with the late Frank Wappat who was a well-known disc jockey on Radio Newcastle and was born in Hebburn. He died in 2014.
I've been listening to his [Denny Farrell] latest broadcast on LNCR and his taste is impeccable - Mary-Lou Williams, Dave Brubeck, Dinah Washington, Joe Pass, Duke and Rosie [Clooney], Art Tatum and Cozy Cole to mention but a few. All introduced by Farrell in his deep, resonant, bass voice - they don't come any cooler than this! 
Well worth bookmarking:
Lance

Community Hall New Orleans Band @ Springwell Village Community Venue - April 18

Mick Hill (trumpet, vocals); Liz Bacon (clarinet); Jim Blenkin (trombone, vocals); Ian Wynne (piano, vocals); Dave Rae (guitar, banjo, vocals); John Robinson (double bass); Paul Bacon (drums) + Mac Rae (trumpet, vocals) third set
(Review by Russell)
Recent Arctic weather has, unsurprisingly, affected audience numbers across the region. Resident bands have played to fewer listeners - Springwell Village Community Venue’s Wednesday evening session being one example of winter’s chill wind decimating numbers. Springwell’s Community Hall New Orleans Band, resident for many a year, in many guises – the Rae Brothers NOJB, then Dave Rae’s Levee Ramblers – kept on going, flying the Crescent City flag. The band’s perseverance was rewarded last night with a capacity audience there to welcome home local hero Ian Wynne.

Bass-less fears! The Gala Big Band @ The Gala Theatre, Durham – April 17

(Personnel to follow - maybe)
(Review by Jerry)
The annual big-bash for this estimable community band was late getting started – the bass guitar “had imploded” (?) just before curtain-up so the stressed guitarist rushed off home (?) to repair/replace the offending instrument. Problems for the MD who likened the bass in a band to the goalie in football – you hardly notice them when things are going well but when things go wrong you realise how important they are!
After a delay, and still bass-less, they launched into Strike Up the Band and Bye Bye Blackbird featuring a piano solo by Ben Lawrence. There were no own-goals conceded before the bassist appeared, stage left and panting, and order was almost restored in the rhythm section in time for Alex Kennedy to step up from the drums and give us the vocals on Almost Like Being in Love.

Julija Jacenaite & Alan Law at The Dun Cow, Jesmond - April 18

Julija Jacenaite (vocals/piano); Alan Law (piano) + George Sykes (tenor).
(Review by Lance).
I've heard Julija several times at jam sessions and never failed to be impressed. However, a couple of numbers at a jam is far removed from the responsibility of sustaining that momentum over a two-set gig and I was curious to see if she could cut it. 
Any doubts I may have had vanished with the opening bars of Misty - this, I told myself was going to be good and it was good - maybe as good as it gets except, as the night unfolded it got even better!
An original, Mood 3, The Girl From Ipanema, introduced in English, sung in Portuguese by a lady from Lithuania and much appreciated by a couple at my table who were from Norway!
Jazz - the international language.

Blog Archive

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

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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