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Bebop Spoken There

Vadim Neselovskyi, Professor of Jazz Piano, Berklee College of Music: “Every pianist has to deal with a very complex left-hand part at some point. This is the essential pianistic experience – to split your brain into two halves and execute two very different tasks at the same time.” – (Down Beat September 2017).

Roscoe Mitchell: “To me, improvisation is trying to improve your skills so you can make these on-point compositional decisions. That takes practice.” – (Down Beat September 2017)

Archives

Today Sunday September 24

Scarborough Jazz Festival - Day three of three.
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Afternoon.
More Jam - The Globe, 11 Railway St., Newcastle NE4 7AD. 3pm. Free.
Ian Harrington (solo piano) - Cherry Tree Restaurant, 9 Osborne Rd., Jesmond, Newcastle. 12:30pm. Free.
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Mick Shoulder's Swing Manouche - Claypath Delicatessen, Durham DH1 1QS. 0191 3407209. 4pm. £5.
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Blues @ The Bay - Tanner Smith's, 17-19 South Parade, Whitley Bay NE26 2RE, 0191 2525941. 4pm. Blues Jam w. Scott Wall & Charlie Philp.
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Musicians Unlimited - Park Hotel, Park Rd., Hartlepool TS26 9HU. 01249 233126.1pm. Free.
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Jazz Tones - Quakerhouse, Mechanics' Yard, Darlington DL3 7QF. 6pm. £4.
Somethin' Blue - Vesuvio, 3a Houndgate, Darlington DL1 5RL. 01325 788564. 5pm. Weekly.
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Evening
The Blueswater - Cluny, Lime St., Newcastle NE1 2PQ 0191 2304474. Doors 7pm. £7.
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Chris Martin - Billy Bootleggers, 28 Nelson St., Newcastle NE1 5AN. 9pm. Free.
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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 13, 2016

Mark Williams Trio @ The Jazz Café. April 12

Mark Williams (guitar), Paul Susans (bass) & Russ Morgan (drums)
(Review by Russell/Photos courtesy of Mike Tilley)
At dusk a mid-November mist descended over Newcastle. As it is the month of April the unseasonal gloom perhaps persuaded some to stay indoors. The streets quiet, the pubs no different, down on Pink Lane the Jazz Café’s doors defiantly remained open for business.
Half an hour before the first set was due to start three amigos sat at the bar; Geordie Jazz (the house bottled beer), a cider and a glass of wine in front of them. The ‘three’, the trio of Mark Williams, Paul Susans and Russ Morgan, were ready and waiting. Patience is a virtue and in due course the Caff filled up nicely and the boys made a start.

Guitarist Mark Williams wouldn’t be out of place leading a band at Ronnie Scott’s or one of the Big Apple’s premier jazz clubs such as the Blue Note or the Village Vanguard. The fact that the amiable Irishman chooses to ply his trade on Tyneside is one of the glories of the Geordie jazz scene. The set list comprised now familiar original tunes and one or two new numbers. Totally in command of his instrument, his current band mates Paul Susans and Russ Morgan are, perhaps, the ideal musicians to take the music to a wider audience. Dark, brooding, prowling riffs, Williams revelled in constantly shifting time signatures, a book of chords labelled ‘advanced’ and working with two similarly talented musicians.
Weird Waltz is a dystopian lullaby; lyrical, threatening, briefly swing time. Slow, slow, breaks off, go! Williams is a man of few words preferring to let his guitar do the talking. Self deprecation suits the Irishman: It’s just a blues said Williams of Booze Blues. Just a blues? And the rest! The arrival on the scene of Russ Morgan has been a real bonus. The thought occurred that he is the drummer for this band. Word of mouth, checkout Morgan and the gig was his. Scintillating playing from all three men. Last Bus to Bensham (Colin Dexter would approve of the title!) was one of Williams’ tunes. Is it really titled Last Bus to Bensham? Probably.
The ‘Tuesday Live at the Jazz Café’ audience really dug it. From the off everyone sat or stood at the bar listening intently. Bassist Susans has worked with Williams for years and it shows – total trust, freedom to express. Swing, blues, cranked-up riffs, leftfield waltz, a free-jazz element, a listener’s gig. List your favourite musicians. Williams isn’t on it? In that case, you haven’t heard him play.                           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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