To the best of our knowledge, details of the above events are correct but may be subject to alteration.
Monday, April 25, 2016
Swing 16 @ The Globe Jazz Bar - April 24
Kay Usher (vln); Bradley Johnston, Simon Stephenson, John Usher (gtrs); Dave Parker (bs) + Julie Allen.
(Review by Lance)
Debut gigs are usually good audience-wise.The leader makes an effort, invites friends who invite friends and bingo! You've got a full house. We saw this previously with Minnie and the Moochers. The moral being, if you've got a gig, push it, don't assume they'll just turn up - you're rarely the only game in town.
Tonight saw a very good turnout for this latest Djangolic reincarnation. The original line-up, i.e. violin, three guitars and double bass? Well, not exactly, Kay Usher fiddled a solid bodied violin and the guitars were not three Maccas but one Macca, one f holed electro/acoustic and one standard steel-strung plugged in acoustic.
So this wasn't quite the authenticity they were seeking - or maybe it was.
What did matter was that they gave an outstanding performance recreating those heady Parisian days of yore before they became days of war. Kay Usher, ex Northern Sinfonia, displayed an understanding of the idiom both in her solos and in her informative chat between tunes.
Bradley took most of the guitar solos although Simon also impressively plucked his way in and out. Rhythm man John grabbed a few choruses on It Don't Mean a Thing . but this was Kay's caper!
The music was superb - it was like as though I was sipping Dubonnet in a café in Montmartre in 1940, confident that the Seigfried Line would save madame et moi from any inconvenience. Or maybe having a cup of Fortnum & Mason's in a Lyons Corner House during the Blitz ('That noise? Oh it's probably one of those bally Doodlebugs").
Although a fairly predictable repertoire, this didn't detract mine, or the crowd's, obvious enjoyment: Lady Be Good; All of Me; Don't Get Around Much Anymore; It Don't Mean a Thing; Exactly Like You; Mood Indigo; Pennies From Heaven; Minor Swing; Out of Nowhere; Undecided (with a reference to the upcoming Referendum - don't get me started!); Nuages; Djangology; I Can't Believe That You're in Love With me and Sweet Georgia Brown. For this latter number, Julie Allen accepted Kay's invite to sing and chantez she did - tres bon! Photos. Lance.
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.)