Take it to the Bridge - The Globe, 11 Railway St., Newcastle NE4 7AD. £1. 8pm.
Lindsay Hannon - Cherry Tree Restaurant, 9 Osborne Rd., Jesmond, Newcastle. 7:30pm. No cover charge.
Chris Sharkey Trio - Jazz Café, 25 Pink Lane, Newcastle NE1 5DW. 8ppm. £4 (Students free).
Cancelled this week only. Levee Ramblers NOJB - Springwell Village Community Venue, Fell Road, Springwell, Gateshead NE9 7RP. 8:30pm. £3.00. Cancelled.
To the best of our knowledge, details of the above events are correct but may be subject to alteration.
Sunday, July 27, 2014
CD (s) Review: Nina Simone - Original Album Series.
The Amazing Nina Simone (1959); Nina Simone at Town Hall (1959);
Forbidden Fruit (1960); Nina Simone Sings Ellington (1962); Folksy Nina (1964).
(Review by Debra M.)
This 5 CD collection
is a re-issue of Nina Simone’s early recordings with her first big label
Colpix Records, which followed her
debut LP ‘Little Boy Blue’ with Bethlehem
Records. Her impact had been such
that, unusually, Colpix gave her complete creative control.
The first album, issued in 1959 and recorded at the age of
26 with many years of performing behind her, is The Amazing Nina Simone,
arranged & conducted by Bob Mersey. The range of material reflects her
diverse musical influences and includes jazz standards, folk tunes and
gospel. The opening ballad Blue
Preludeis a compelling reminder of the unique timbre of Nina Simone’s voice.Her
delivery is melancholy and haunting, and
this expressive, subtle style provides another highlight in It
Might As Well Be Spring.
Nina Simone at Town
Hall was recorded on September 12 of
the same year, and captures Simone’s
trio on top form. They are
relaxed & swinging in Exactly
Like You, restrained in The Other Woman, maximising its
lyrical impact, and provide great dynamics in Billie Holliday’s Fine and Mellow. But
the outstanding track is the exquisite Wild
Is the Wind, sung so tenderly, and accompanied by delicate
wind-like flurries from Simone at the piano.
Despite the tempting
title, the third album in the series, Forbidden Fruit, is
more pedestrian , with the exception
of the upbeat, raunchier style of I Love to Loveand Work Song, and a heartfelt
rendition of Memphis in
June. The final and eponymous track feels slightly out of place,
although Simone always retained church
derived songs in her repertoire, and the
band clearly had some fun with this take of Adam & Eve eating that
Nina Simone Sings Ellington,released in 1962, includes a
selection of well known and more obscure songs from the great composer. The arrangements, featuring orchestra with
horns, strings, and a host of closely harmonied backing singers, are of its
time, and restrict the opportunities
for improvisation , although in the only
instrumental track, Satin Doll, Simone’s distinctive piano
style is evident. The exception is Hey Buddy Bolden , a tribute to
the New Orleans cornetist & one of
the founders of jazz, in which Simone gives
a passionate, hollering
rendition accompanied almost
exclusively by her piano.
The final album is Folksy
Nina, a collection of
live recordings of old English ,
Israeli, Low Country & American blues and traditional tunes. This
provides some unexpected treats, in particular the percussion from Montego Joe on Eretz Zavat Chalav and Vanetihu, and a stripped down interpretation of the old English folk tune The
Twelfth of Never, with piano and bowed bass, which is leagues ahead
of the schmaltzy Donny Osmond version. The album ends sweetly with two children’s
songs You Can Sing A Rainbow, and Hush Little Baby, with
Simone’s vocal backed by delicate interchanges of guitar and piano, lullabies
of the highest calibre.
Simone Original Album Series provides 5 quite different albums
that give a great overview of her unique voice and
musicianship, as well as her diverse musical interests. Highly recommended for
established fans, as well as for less familiar
listeners, seeking to discover Simone’s
early eclectic repertoire. It is scheduled for release by Warner on August 25. Debra M.
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.)