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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. 2nd of 6 consecutive gigs. 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.

Saturday, October 05, 2013

Bill Harper Remembers - Part One.

Hi Lance, I'd never looked at the fact that I'd set some sort of record for supporting some of the world's greatest jazz soloists but, as you say, it is an era which regrettably has gone, so maybe I have a record which will never be broken. Looking back through my diaries, I was amazed to find that I had worked with more than 80 world class players, many at the Corner House and also many other venues organised by Jazz NE, plus my time working with Frank Brooker at Festivals throughout the UK, NI & Belgium. I will always be grateful to Jazz NE  who, in 1983, gave me the opportunity to be in the company of a veritable "treasure chest" of great US stars, the first one being Art Farmer.
Of course it wasn't all down to me-- I was surrounded by great local players like Sid Warren, Willie Payne, Mike Gilby, Derek Dixon, all sadly no longer with us, & a little later the power house engine room of Adrian Tilbrook & Peter Stuart, without whose support I would at times have been struggling badly & I will always be in their debt.
Art Farmer was a lovely man with a quiet sense of humour who was surprised to see that I had the changes, introduction & ending for 'I Remember Clifford" & he smiled when I told him that I had taken them down from his original recording with Benny Golson. I worked with him later at the Rosehill Theatre (Whitehaven) which was in the middle of nowhere, out in the sticks. After playing to a packed house, the trio was preparing for the long trip back to the NE when he popped his head through the dressing room door & said "Come on you guys-- lets hit the jazz spots in town". A great sense of humour!!!
Of the many trumpeters that I have supported, Warren Vache is my personal favourite. For tone, technique & musical invention, he is unsurpassed for me & in spite of a fearsome reputation, I found him to be a likeable intelligent man. He could be extremely aggressive & abrasive & didn't tolerate fools gladly but Anne & I spent a couple of days with him on a gig at Ulverston & I have to say we enjoyed his company immensely. His recollections on his career plus the hilarious events that took place at the gig would fill a small book--- maybe later!!! Of course I can't talk "trumpets" without mentioning the gentle giant Bruce Adams who is without doubt the most extrovert player I've ever worked with. Blessed with a phenomenal technique & a sense of humour to match, he is as easy as an old shoe & an absolute joy to work with. He is a good friend & we do see him from time to time over here as he has a summer residence 80 kilos away.
(end part one).
Bill Harper.
(In the photo above Bill is far right with Dennis Healey (dms); Sid Warren (ten); Al Grey (tmb); Derek Dixon (bs) and Willie Payne (gtr) - Lance).

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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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