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Bebop Spoken There

Miles Kington: "If the intake of alcohol fails to improve a jazz player's performance, why do jazz listeners think it improves their appreciation?" - (Jazz Express October 1982).

Barbara Jay: "My first gig was at the Astoria, Charing Cross Rd. It seemed like a den of iniquity to me. All the Soho girls were there and the gigolos with their old women paying them to dance..." - (Jazz UK May 2008.)

Archives.

Today Tuesday February 28

Bill Laurence Group - Sage Gateshead. 8pm. £17.40.
Alex Munk's Flying Machines - Jazz Café, 25 Pink Lane, Newcastle NE1 5DW. 8pm. £10/£8. JNE/Schmazz gig.
Maine St. Jazzmen - Royal British Legion Club, 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, March 13, 2015

Mercy! Mercy! Mercy! @ Newcastle Arts Centre March 12

Martin Kershaw (alt); Colin Steele (tpt); Steve Hamilton (pno); Brian Shiels (bs); Alyn Cosker (dms).
(Review by Lance/Photo courtesy of Ken Drew).
A cracker of a gig by five of Scotland's finest paying tribute to one of jazz's great bands - The Cannonball Adderley Quintet. It's been a good few days for alto sax players - Mark Toomey's recreation of Bird With Strings down in Saltburn and this appreciation of the late Cannonball. I never heard the alto player live although I did see his brother Nat (played here by Colin Steele - who previously had played Chet Baker at Live Theatre some years back) at the Corner House in the 1980s. 
This was a fairly faithful re-creation opening with the Theme from Fiddler on the Roof with its suggestion of an Irish reel and closing with the piece the band are named after, Joe Zawinal's Mercy! Mercy! Mercy!
In between, the goodly sized crowd heard classics from the Adderley repertoire such  as One For Daddy-o; Big P (Percy Heath); Falling Feathers - one of 'Q''s early compositions which brought out the lyricism in Steve Hamilton and Jive Samba.
Time to stop and recharge and to catch up with those folk who form the nucleus of the north-east jazz population many of whom contribute to these pages.
The second set moved up a gear as second sets usually do. The Way You Look Tonight had blistering alto and the first major explosion from Cosker, Paul Chamber's Ease It featured Shiels alongside a muted solo from Steele which may well have been his best of the night.
Shiels conjures up expressions of absolute concentration as he plays. Eyes closed, brow furrowed, is he thinking of the next set of chord changes or is he wondering if he's turned the gas off.
Steele is the archetypal trumpet player when it comes to body language! Knees bent, horn tilted towards the ceiling, the floor, wherever, shoulders back - Hollywood directors, next time you're casting a jazz trumpet player, look no further.
Kershaw gave us a sumptuous What's New? the band took Duke Pearson's Jeannine at Tempo de Lick before closing with MMM Steele on plunger and Cosker on Adrenaline. 
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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