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Bebop Spoken There

Vadim Neselovskyi, Professor of Jazz Piano, Berklee College of Music: “Every pianist has to deal with a very complex left-hand part at some point. This is the essential pianistic experience – to split your brain into two halves and execute two very different tasks at the same time.” – (Down Beat September 2017).

Roscoe Mitchell: “To me, improvisation is trying to improve your skills so you can make these on-point compositional decisions. That takes practice.” – (Down Beat September 2017)

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Today Tuesday September 26

Afternoon
Vieux Carré Jazzmen - Black Bull, 98 Front St., East Boldon NE36 0SG. 1pm. Free. 0191 5365127. New residency 2 mins from East Boldon metro.
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Evening
Maine Street Jazzmen - Royal British Legion, West Jesmond Ave., Newcastle NE2 3EX. 8:30pm. £5.
Charles Gordon (solo piano) - Redwood Bar, Vermont Hotel, Newcastle. 10pm - midnight. Free.
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To the best of our knowledge, details of the above events are correct but may be subject to alteration.

Friday, June 21, 2013

CD Review: Chip Stephens Trio - Relevancy

Chip Stephens (pno); Dennis Carroll (bs); Joel Spencer (dms)
(Review by Lance).
An almost traditional hard bop trio, the block chords, the rippling right hand explorations, the assertive theme statements make for an enjoyable CD
Chip Stephens is a pianist out of Bill Evans by way of say Sonny Clark, Bud Powell, Peterson and early Jarrett.  He doesn't use the piano as a harp or pummel it into submission. The piano is the most wonderful instrument in the world and should be accorded the respect it deserves. Abuse of, say a Steinway, to me, is akin to defacing the Mona Lisa or watching the X-Factor. Do what you like to a keyboard but please don't mishandle a grand piano. 
Stephens displays great fluency on the fast numbers and a deep introspective eloquence on the ballads. Probing, searching and ultimately discovering the heart and soul of the composition. He's the leader, the boss the centre stage star but not without the contributions of bass and drums who provide the bricks and mortar to make the unit complete.
The material is a mix of standards. Like Someone In Love, A solo piano rendition of a rare Rodgers and Hart piece - This Funny World - Be My Love (Mario Lanza fans look away!) Bill Evans' 34 Skidoo, Carla Bley's Syndrome and 3 originals.
Although I've said it many times over the 5 years of Bebop Spoken Here, this is reminiscent of the Blue Note of yore, and, in my view, the accolades don't come any higher! May Capri Records give us more of the same.
Chip Stephens Trio - Relevancy was released June 17 on Capri 74120-2.
Lance.

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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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