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Bebop Spoken There

Artie Shaw: “I'm not interested in giving people what they want--I'm interested in making music.” – (DownBeat October 15, 1939).

Jason Marsalis: “There's so many places that this music can go and there's a lot yet to be discovered.'” – (DownBeat April 2018)

Today Sunday March 18


Musicians Unlimited - Park Inn, Park Road, Hartlepool TS26 9HU. Tel: 01429 233126. 12 noon. Free.

Jason Isaacs & the Ambassadors of Swing - Hoochie Coochie, Pilgrim Street, Newcastle NE1 6SF. Tel: 0191 222 0130. 5:30pm (doors 4:00pm). £16.00.

Revolutionaires - Tyne Bar, Maling St, Newcastle NE6 1LP. 3pm. Free.

Somethin’ Blue - Vesuvio, 3a Houndgate, Darlington DL1 5RL. 5:00pm. Tel: 01325 788564. Matt Case (saxophone) & Mike Hepple (guitar).


POSTPONED DUE TO WEATHER! Zoë Gilby Quartet - Black Bull, Bridge Street, Blaydon NE21 4JJ. 8:00pm. £5.00. Rescheduled August 19.

Alter Ego - The Globe, 11 Railway Street, Newcastle NE4 7AD. 7:30pm. £5.00.

Bradley Johnston - The Fire Station, High Street West, Sunderland SR1 3DT. Tel: 0191 594 7241. 6:00pm. Free. New weekly residency.

Gypsy Dave Smith - Billy Bootleggers, Nelson St, Newcastle NE1 5AN. 9:00pm. Free.

To the best of our knowledge, details of the above events are correct but may be subject to alteration.

Friday, June 12, 2015

Lickety Split @ the Jazz Café. June 11

Eddie Bellis (trombone), Paul Gowland (tenor saxophone), Alan Marshall (alto saxophone), Kevin Eland (trumpet & flugelhorn), Bradley Johnston (guitar), Roy Willis (guitar), Paul Grainger (double bass) & Paul Wight (drums)
(Review by Russell)
Eddie Bellis’ eight piece band gigs infrequently, band members are forever juggling other gigs. The Jazz Café offered a date well in advance and on a sultry summer evening Bellis and co played two sets to an enthusiastic gathering. Doors and windows open, the bar too, drummer Paul Wight brushed a path for a classy Blues Walk. No matter how often a well known tune is heard, if it’s played lovingly, with commitment, then you’re at a good gig.
Lickety Split are all about good gigs. The material is key, as are the musicians. A number of changes in personnel over the years, the current line-up is, perhaps, as good as anyone, not least bandleader Bellis, could wish for. One dep on the night – Paul Grainger in for a touring Alan Rudd – and one couldn’t see the joins. Bassist Grainger read the parts (most of them familiar numbers), the most reliable of deputies. An arrangement of Monk’s Well You Needn’t, then 88 Basin Street at a no-hurry Freddie Greene (Roy Willis) lick took the honours with Bellis leading a round of solos; Paul Gowland on tenor and frontline partner Alan Marshall (alto) and the seated six-string phenomenon Bradley Johnston.
Maynard Ferguson, aka Kevin Eland, kept himself in check, teasing out a cluster of notes on Doxy, before handing on the baton to a bopping Johnston. Great playing all round. The band grabbed an interval beer, the audience likewise. Good to note one or two new faces, younger faces at that. How did they find about the gig? They’ll be back.
This being summertime, drummer Paul Wight opted for a ‘tailored’ pair of shorts. No one said anything. Wight decided to get his retaliation in first drawing attention to his fashion statement. Bellis said: I hadn’t noticed, but as you’ve mentioned it…
The band’s bop to West Coast sound offers endless possibilities; Bags Groove was one of them with altoist Marshall, then a muted Eland knocking out cracking solos. Johnston got the nod from Bellis to take a solo. Well, this was meat and drink to BJ, he was all over it (owing something to a certain JB)! Bellis usually gravitates to cool school Miles and this Jazz Café set did just that. The Birth of the Cool interspersed with other choice cuts saw out the session; What’s New? Joyspring (Paul Grainger enjoying himself), All Blues (Gowland went off on one, touching down with a text book landing), Move, Rouge and Four. They thought they were done. Not so fast…Encore! Encore!
Lickety Split is a cracking band. Easy going guys…not so easy to pin down to a gig date! So, any promoter keen to offer them a gig, don’t hesitate. Email Bebop Spoken Here and we’ll put you in touch with the band. Lickety Split can be heard again at Bonbar (known to all as the Old Assembly Rooms) in Newcastle on Sunday 30 August.       

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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: I look forward to hearing from you.