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Bebop Spoken There

Grant Green Jr.: "One thing that most people--especially jazz cats--don't realise is that all of your jazz standards were once pop standards" - DownBeat July 2018).

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Bobby Sanabria: "Tito Puente was not a very tall man, but when he played the timbales he was a giant among men." - DownBeat July 2018).

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Today Thursday June 21

Afternoon

Vieux Carré Jazzmen - Holystone, Whitley Road, Holystone NE27 0DA. Tel: 266 6173. 1:00pm. Free.

Evening

Maine St. Jazzmen - Sunniside Social Club, Holywell Lane, Sunniside, Gateshead NE16 5NJ. 8:30pm. Free.

Indigo Jazz Voices - The Globe, 11 Railway Street, Newcastle NE4 7AD. 7:30pm. £5.00.

Lambton Little Band - Prohibition Bar, Arch 3, Brandling Street, Gateshead NE8 2BA. 7:00pm. Free. Rehearsal session.

Lindsay Hannon Plus - St James’ & St Basil’s Church, Fenham, Newcastle NE4 9EJ. 7:30pm. £10.00.

Charlotte Glasson Group - Jazz Café, Pink Lane, Newcastle NE1 5DW. Tel: 0191 222 9882. 8:00pm. £10.00. (£8.00. concs.). JNE.

Get in the Band rehearsal - Sage Gateshead, St Mary’s Square, Gateshead Quays, Gateshead NE8 2JR. Tel: 0191 443 4666. 6:00-10:00pm. Second of two rehearsals under the direction of Chris Sharkey culminating in three performances in a day on Sat 23 June - 1) Great North Museum (Hancock Museum), 2) Central Station, 3) Sage Gateshead. Times TBC. Free but ticketed.

New Orleans Preservation Jazz Band - Oxbridge, Oxbridge Lane, Stockton on Tees TS18 4AW. 8:30pm.

Tees Hot Club w. Ray Dales (alto); Dave Stansfield (tenor); Bruce Taylor (keys) - Dorman’s Club, Oxford Road, Middlesbrough TS5 5DT. Tel: 01642 823813. 9pm. Free.

Jazz Jam - Fire Station, High Street West, Sunderland SR1 3DT. Tel: 0191 594 7241. 8pm. Free.

Billy's Buskers: Plug in and Play - Billy Bootleggers, Nelson St, Newcastle NE1 5AN. 7:00pm. Free.

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

Wednesday, June 08, 2016

CD Review: Jason 'El Rubio' McGuire - Terceto Kali

Jason McGuire (Guitar); Paul Martin Sounder (Bass); Marlon Aldana (Drums).
(Review by Steve T)
It's probably a man-thing but we've been seeding guitarists like tennis players since Eric Clapton left the Yardbirds fearing they were starting to sound like the Beatles. Known at the time as God, everything was about to change with the arrival on the scene of a certain Jimi. In truth, we had very little to go on, but I wonder what we would have made of Jason McGuire aka El Rubio?
Whenever anyone asks me who is the world’s greatest guitarist, which happens more often than you would think, I always propose it's likely some unknown Spaniard in his thirties. El Rubio is, in fact, a Texan with Irish roots (the band hail from the Bay Area) who cut his chops listening to Hendrix and the British 'blues' guitarists; presumably Eric and other Yardbirds’ and Bluesbreakers’ alumni: Peter Green, Jeff Beck, and Jimmy Page.
However, it was on hearing Paco DeLucia that everything changed for him. Paco is largely responsible for spreading flamenco music worldwide and is equally revered in Jazz, Jazz-rock and Gypsy Jazz circles and I must concur, he's the most mind-bogglingly magnificent guitarist I've ever heard.
Virtuoso guitarists of the calibre of Paco and El Rubio often struggle to remain on the side of good taste, straying into performing circus tricks; impressive but meaningless in a musical context. Paco’s musicality is perennially intact and El Rubio more or less pulls it off too. 
While there are distinct features of each, the album serves up a superb fusion of flamenco and the Jazz guitar trio format. Although I have very little knowledge of flamenco, with over fifty distinct styles, it seems to me that it isn't just one with elements, textures and characteristics of the other, but a seamless conflation of the two.
This is evident on the album opener Zardoz, featuring flamenco guitar stylings assimilated into a basic Jazz guitar trio, which is disrupted after the four-minute mark by a short cante from guest vocalist Jose Cortes, further reminding the listener that it's also flamenco. 
Kali also has a flamenco style song-form featuring Jose Cortes, and A Liberty and Contratempio sound, to these untrained ears, like fairly straightforward flamenco.  
In contrast, Zap is reminiscent of Birds of Fire by the Mahavishnu Orchestra but on acoustic guitar and, while Rick Laird never used a bowed double bass, it was a prominent feature of both Miroslav Vitous and Stanley Clarke, enhancing the evocation of Jazz-rock, but retaining a flamenco sensibility.
The final track, Motivation is perhaps the most interesting from a Jazz perspective; at almost ten minutes it's free throughout with no repetitive rhythm and each musician taking the lead in turn. 
Romance is one of two songs on the album written for his wife, flamenco dancer Yaelisa, and he demonstrates a tenderness often lacking in guitarists who specialise in godzillions of notes per nanosecond.
For once, I'm encouraged there could be a market for a CD. Flamenco has a broad cross-cultural appeal and enjoys popularity around the world' and I hear no reason why the Jazz content would detract from this. Furthermore, there is much here to appeal to anybody who appreciates Jazz guitar, particularly anyone bored by the constant recycling of formulaic clichés, or Jazz more broadly.
Out now and recommended.
Steve T.

1 comment :

Steven T said...

For anybody interested in flamenco, or guitar geniuses more generally, Paco Pena, arguably the finest exponent of the style since the death of Paco De Lucia, returns to the Sage on July 18th.

Blog Archive

Submissions for review

Whilst we appreciate the many emails, texts, messages and other communications we receive requesting album/gig reviews on BSH, regrettably, we are unable to reply to them all other than those we are able to answer with a positive response.
Similarly, CDs received by post will only be considered if accompanied by sufficient background material.
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Lance

About this blog - contact details.

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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