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Bebop Spoken There

Alan Luff: “The general view is that Ella’s songbook recordings are the supreme exemplars of sophistication, fine diction and creative voice in the wide field of popular music.” – (Jazz Journal May 2017).

Steve Voce: “Most of us have been crashed into by cretins who walk along the road absorbed in the screens of their mobile phones.” – (Jazz Journal May 2017).

Number 22!

Bebop Spoken Here is currently listed at number 22 in the WORLD JAZZ BLOG Rankings!

Today Wednesday May 24

Afternoon.
Vieux Carre Jazzmen - Crescent Club, 1 Hudleston, Cullercoats NE30 3OS. 1pm. Free.
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Evening.
Take it to the Bridge - The Globe, 11 Railway St., Newcastle NE4 7AD. £1. 8pm.
Levee Ramblers NOJB - Springwell Village Community Venue, Fell Road, Springwell, Gateshead NE9 7RP. 8:30pm. £3.00.
Chris Sharkey Trio - Jazz Café, 25 Pink Lane, Newcastle NE1 5DW. 8pm. £5.
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To the best of our knowledge, details of the above events are correct but may be subject to alteration.

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

Darlington Jazz Festival. Sunday April 26: An Afternoon Session @ St Augustine’s

(Review by Russell)
St Augustine’s Parish Centre, an established venue thanks to Darlington New Orleans Jazz Club’s monthly concert promotions, hosted the final day of this year’s Darlington Jazz Festival. Set in leafy grounds, a musician playing with his young daughter, doors open on a mild spring afternoon, the scene exemplified the festival organisers’ relaxed, welcoming approach.
Inside, preparations were almost complete. A festival banner being hung, similarly the   sponsors and Musicians’ Union’s pop up banners were put in place. Three bands were scheduled to perform. Darlington Big Band had the honour of kicking-off proceedings. Mostly old hands, ‘punctuality’ their middle name, the boys set up in good time, ready, keen to get started. 
In the absence of Richie Emmerson, Andy Bennett led the orchestra. Stan Kenton charts, a Horace Silver tune, Theme From Love Story, Frank Mantooth’s arrangement of Alfie, a varied pad, expertly played. The latter number featured a flugel solo from Bill Watson – great playing. Will Howard depped at short notice, reading the charts as they were put in front of him, taking several solos – a real talent is Mr Howard.
Darlington Big Band:
Andy Bennett (MD, alto & soprano saxophones), Will Howard (tenor saxophone & clarinet), Alan Thompson (alto saxophone), Jill ? (alto saxophone), Eric ? (baritone saxophone), Bob Temple (trumpet), Bill Watson (trumpet), Alan Smith (trumpet), Alan Catherall (trumpet), Terry O’Hern (trombone), Dave Brock (trombone), Alistair Wood (trombone), Chris Hibbard (bass trombone), ?? (piano), Tom Stephenson (guitar), Alan Smith (bass guitar) & Ray Campbell (drums)
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Out of town visitors played the middle set of three. The Nicola Farnon Trio made the trip from Sheffield in a tightly-packed estate car – double bass, keyboards, saxophone, drum kit, PA, not forgetting three musicians! Almost a quarter of a million miles on the clock, Farnon, Piero Tucci and Phil Johnson have been around the block a few times. Their set proved to be the surprise hit of the festival. Ms Farnon has three things going for her; an engaging personality, excellent musicianship and a great voice. Make that five things – Piero Tucci is equally adept playing keyboards and tenor saxophone and drummer Phil Johnson knows his way around the kit. The material comprised familiar, classic numbers given a fresh slant, played with verve and consummate skill. A perceptive listener said it was a pleasure to listen to musicians really enjoying themselves. Well said, that man!
Tunes included Cheek to Cheek, This Can’t Be Love, One Note Samba, No Moon at All and The More I See You. Every one of them hit the spot. And then there was a Farnon original – Perfect Loverly Day. Great bass playing, a fabulous voice, Tucci’s swinging tenor and keyboards, Johnson’s propulsive sticks’ work – this gig will live long in the memory for all the right reasons. Note to promoters – book the Nicola Farnon Trio as your audience will be thoroughly entertained and will demand that you book them again! A Day at the Market, a live CD recording by the Nicola Farnon Trio offers more of the same. A review of the 2014 release will be posted in the coming days.
The afternoon’s entertainment concluded with a performance by Darlington’s Little Big Band. The junior big band boasted no fewer than six trumpets, five trombones, six reeds, piano, bass and drums. Tutored by Ian Robinson, the band showed what it could do with classic material. Bill Bailey, A Nightingale Sang in Berkeley Square (beautifully played), First Time Around, a stompin’ Stompin’ at the Savoy, Splanky – all skillfully played with commitment and enjoyment. The St Augustine’s audience made a point of giving every encouragement to the stars of tomorrow. Mr Robinson spoke about the development of jazz education in County Durham over several years and this current crop of young musicians serves as testament to the invaluable work done by many of his colleagues throughout the county.           
Russell.      

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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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