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Number 22 in World Jazz Blog Rankings

Number 22 in World Jazz Blog Rankings

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).

Today Monday May 22

Afternoon.
Jazz in the Afternoon - Crescent Club, 1 Hudleston, Cullercoats NE30 3OS. 1pm. Free.
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Evening.
?????
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To the best of our knowledge, details of the above events are correct but may be subject to alteration.

Tuesday, May 12, 2015

Strictly Smokin’ Big Band @ The Keys, Darlington. May 10

(Review by Russell)
Darlington Jazz Club goes from strength to strength. Following the success of the 2015 Darlington Jazz Festival staged at a multitude of town centre locations, club organisers have an additional venue to play with. The Keys on Skinnergate is a bar/restaurant/club affair. The stripped-back-to-the-brick, pastel shades of the ground floor bar are in stark contrast to the ‘funky industrial’ theme of the first floor nightclub. The exposed heating ducts, the steel perimeter around the centrally sited, up-lit dance floor – it all felt a little too self-conscious. Scene set, the Strictly Smokin’ Big Band set up on the dance floor.
Tyneside’s seriously smokin’ outfit adopted an unusual configuration; reeds and rhythm sections at ninety degrees to the brass players, the expanse of the dance floor open to the vocalists. The audience sat (and stood) on all four sides.
‘Welcome to Studio 54!’ quipped MC Guy Swinton. Grace Jones and Steve Strange were conspicuous by their absence but the band didn’t hang around waiting for them to show. Buddy Rich, Kenny Wheeler, Horace Silver, Tom Garling, Howlin’ Wolf, Van Morrison – an eclectic set list to say the least! The room didn’t help the sound and the vocalists – two top singers – weren't heard to best effect. The radiant Lindsay Hannon stood in the spotlight (quite literally), every bit Veronica Lake and a little bit Jean Harlow (in a studio publicity pic), to sing a few songs including I’m Beginning to See the Light and Route 66. Male counterpart F’reez, more soul boy than interpreter of the Gasbook, charmed the rosé-drinking ladies with Moondance and Come Fly with Me.
The boys in the band were as good as one has come to expect – special mention for the rhythm section (always impressive) and on this occasion, the smokin’ trumpet section.
The saxophones had their moments (baritone Laurie Rangecroft soloed!) and the band’s new party piece – Sax Alley – worked as an encore with tenors Keith Robinson, Paul Gowland and Jamie Toms tearing it up.
The Keys is different. Darlington Jazz Club will work hard to make it work. Early days, time will tell. The next club night is on Sunday 24 May at the Quakerhouse, Mechanics’ Yard, featuring one of Andy Bennett’s final gigs before upping sticks and heading down south. Bennett, a superb alto/soprano saxophonist and clarinetist (he held the chair in the Voice of the North Jazz Orchestra) will have some of the finest musicians around to say farewell. Put it the diary now – 5:30pm, Sunday 24th May.                         
Strictly Smokin’ Big Band: Michael Lamb MD, Pete Tanton, Gordon Marshall, Dick Stacey (trumpets), John Flood, Tom Dowling, Mark Ferris, Kieran Parnaby (trombones), Laurie Rangecroft (baritone saxophone), Paul Gowland (tenor saxophone), Jamie Toms (tenor saxophone), Niall Armstrong (alto saxophone), Keith Robinson (alto & tenor saxophones), Graham Don (piano), Pawel Jedrzejewski (guitar), Michael Whent (bass), Guy Swinton (drums), Lindsay Hannon (vocals) & F’reez (vocals).
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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