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Bebop Spoken There

Sonny Rollins: "I work very hard. I wear out suits playing." - (Downbeat May 29, 1969.)

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Bob Brookmeyer: "The group's philosophy? We're saving to buy new uniforms - the ties wore out." - (Crescendo March 1965).

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Archives.

Today Friday March 24

Afternoon
Rendezvous Jazz - The Black Horse, Front St., Monkseaton, Whitley Bay NE25 8DP. 1pm. Free.
Mick Shoulder's Swing Manouche - Town Hall, Market Place, Bishop Auckland DL14 7NP. 1pm. £5. 0300 0269520
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Evening
James Harrison & Caroline Bagley- Jazz Café, 25 Pink Lane, Newcastle NE1 5DW. 9pm. Free.
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Steve Bone - Al Forno, 81 Skinnergate, Darlington DL3 7LX. 7:00pm.
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To the best of our knowledge, details of the above events are correct but may be subject to alteration.

Monday, December 22, 2014

Harlem Hot Stompers @ Boston Spa - Dec. 20

John Ronan (tmb), Bill Smith (cornet), John Reade (pno), Ian McCann (bjo/gtr), Grant Taylor (dms), Dave Parr (bs/tuba), Dave Thomas (cl)
(Review by Ray)
Time again to listen out for Santa's sleigh bringing goodies ......remember ...if you believe ...you can hear the bells on his sleigh ....no bells tonight, but a festive treat nevertheless as the boys from Manchester crossed the Pennines to provide a packed house at Boston Spa with jazz of a festive nature at the annual party bash.
Suitably attired in Santa hats the guys kicked off with Closer Walk with Thee then That's a Plenty taking us back to the spiritually uplifting Won't be Here Too Long. Back to trad ....a couple of features ....Dave Thomas on vocals with Button up Your Overcoat and John Reade a piano solo on Wildcat Blues. Jelly Roll Morton's FroggimoreRag took us up-tempo and into You're Nobody's Sweetheart Now, then Down by the Riverside saw the first audience participation of the evening & took us to the break.
As befits a Christmas party at the Spa, the food just kept coming ....a visual cornucopia fit for the occasion ....though after over indulging we were not fit for much ...but ...that's what Christmas is all about !
Anyone who knows the Stompers would recall that they sadly lost leader Tony Foulkes 18 months earlier ....since then, Banjo man Ian has led them forward. On returning for the second set, resident archivist John Ronan gave us the good tidings that it was 45 years to the day that the original Stompers played their first gig ...not a bad record at all ....you can see how they survive in today's scene ....Bill Smith led the line in the style of an old fashioned centre-forward .....with wingers John & Dave excelling in providing support to him ....and the half back rhythm line keeping it all tight at the back.
Kicking off the second set in fine style, we moved through Acker's Goodnight Sweet Prince to Buddy Bolden's Buddy's Habits then a beautiful Dave Thomas solo, Burgundy Street. A rousing Black and Blue saw us safely to the Raffle. No prizes for us, but the musical gems kept coming .... Jelly Roll’s Doctor Jazz then it was our turn ....the hall echoing to Carols as John on piano led us through the old standards ....Rudolph ...Silent Night ...Winter Wonderland ....White Christmas ...and finally Jingle Bells. Going Home was a non too subtle hint that the end was nigh and sadly we bade farewell to our friends at the Spa and braved the cold of the night.
Traditionally, at the close of the year, we make resolutions ....if you have not yet visited the Jazz at the Spa, then you really need to put it high on your 2015 wish-list - the jazz there is of the highest class, it’s every Saturday, and it's pay on the door - so it's a few miles down the road? ....the simple fact is that nowadays we in, the Newcastle area, no longer have a venue which regularly attracts the bands that the Spa does ....we are starved of regular good jazz of this type ...the first three months alone see Savannah Jazz; Alan Barnes and John Hallam; Mart Rodgers Manchester Jazz; Frank Brookers Happy Chappies; T J Johnson Band and Amy Roberts ......fabulous Jazz !   
Take a look at the website ..www.jazzinthespa.co.uk 
Happy Christmas everyone ....keep jazz alive ....
Ray R.

2 comments :

  1. Thanks for that excellent review Ray really created the atmosphere of Boston Spa.
    However, I think you are doing Newcastle and the north-east down. The Vieux Carré Jazzmen, The Maine Street Jazzmen, The Tees Valley Stompers keep the trad flag flying with weekly gigs. The Whitley Bay Classic Jazz Party brings in bands from all over the world. Alan Barnes was recently at the Jazz Café, John Hallam is not unknown at Blaydon and Blaydon supremo Roly Veitch is not unknown at Boston Spa either. Currently, I would suggest that the north-east has never been better catered for by bands of all styles.

    ReplyDelete
  2. My point is Lance that we have no local venues now attracting quality bands regularly from outside the region. People vote with their feet ...we support the local clubs (Fell, Ashington etc) but like many others whilst we appreciate the quality of the local bands, we simply don't wish to watch them every week ....we crave choice. Audience stats say it all ....Spa 80 to 120 weekly, Darlington 60, Trinity was 80+, Saville 70 ....watching such as French bands Hot Antics, Red Hot Reedwarmers, Paris Washboard, mixed with local talent like Swing City Trio & Hot Club Trio. Contrast that to local clubs ...Blaydon was 25 probably 40 now, Ashington 35, Springwell 30, Fell was 25. The only high audience locally is NCRO's annual Caedman Hall gig ...that can get 200 I think, so there is a bigger audience out there, they need the attraction of a mix of local & national names to get them through the door

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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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