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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.

Tuesday, October 01, 2013

CD Review:French New Wave - Original remastered jazz on film recordings 1957-1962

No Sun in Venice - MJQ.
Lift to the Scaffold - Miles Davis.
Les Liaisons Dangereuses/ Des Femmes Disparaissent - Art Blakey.
Breathless - Martial Solal./ Un Témoin dans la ville - Barney Wilen.
Eva - Michel Legrand.
(Review by Lance)
Wow! any one of these 5 CD's would be in the running for Jazz Reissue of the Year. To get them all in one boxed set means game over - no contest.
How can I begin to relate the delights within? My only regret is that I haven't got the DVDs to play as I listen. But, and it's a big but (not you darling!) the music stands up on its own.
Marcel Romano captures the whole mood with his comment "Jazz was an integral part of the artistic scene that centred around Saint-Germaine-Des-Pré. So it was only logical that the young, new wave directors made films by day using the same music they heard in the clubs at night".
The MJQ's role in No Sun In Venice (1957) was groundbreaking inasmuch it was the first ever film score written by "A serious jazz composer": the pianist John Lewis. (Ellington's Anatomy of a Murder came a couple of years later.)
Gunther Schuller related it to "Third Stream Music" and maybe it was but it did the biz for the film and stands on its own 8 feet.
Lift To The Scaffold (1958) is well known both in small cinemas and on record. The disc is probably better from a jazz point of view as it seems the music was used more sparsely in the actual film. Apart from Davis, Barney Wilen blows some evocative tenor and crops up elsewhere on this set.
Blakey and the Jazz Messengers have two shots for the Jazz Oscars and, if such a coveted trophy existed, they wouldn't have walked away empty handed!
Les Liaisons Dangereuses (1960) and Des Femmes Disparaissent (1959)  were classic sessions with or without the cinematograph. Blakey was drumming at his best - those distinctive press rolls could have sent the Dagenham Girl Pipers on a knicker flashing trip down the high street - on this occasion they launched Lee Morgan and Benny Golson (who wrote the score to the latter piece) into the history of the future. Wilen blows again on the former film soundtrack. If you're confused, so am I ! I've never been so excited, upon receiving these discs, since my eleventh birthday when Santa brought me a Stanley Gibbon's Stamp catalogue and the Boy's Book of Soccer! - Wonder who's got them now?
Probably not Martial Solal. Breathless (1961) is another classic disc!  There are no half measures with zee French. They either do it brilliantly (Solal etc,) or they don't (Claude Luter et co.) The ubiquitous Wilen pops up again, this time as leader, on Un Témoin dans la ville (1959) in a quintet that includes Kenny Dorham and Duke Jordan.
And Michel Legrand - et tu! He may have wrote so many popular themes yet it must not be forgotten that he has le jazz hachette (Jazz chops?) and the big band soundtrack to Eva (1962) proves it - Gil Evans and Michelle? they're from the same mould.
Tres Magnifique are the only two words from my French vocabulary to describe this album apart from C'est S' Bon.
That it comes with a superb booklet with photos and text describing both musicians and film is an added bonus.
French New Wave - Original remastered jazz on film recordings 1957-1962 is now available on
Jazz on Film Records Vol. 3 Catalogue number JOF 001. Further details at
www.jazzonfilmrecords.com
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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