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Bebop Spoken There

Michael Feinstein: “Fred Astaire is my favorite singer. To me, he was the perfect interpreter of American popular song.” – (Jazz Times December 2014).

Bud Shank: “Once I saw California – that was it, I stayed.” – (Jazz Journal May 1991)

Archives.

Friday February 24

Afternoon
Rendezvous Jazz - The Monkseaton Arms, Front St., Monkseaton, Whitley Bay NE25 8DP. 1pm. Free.
Sue Ferris Trio - Bishop Auckland Town Hall, Market Place, Bishop Auckland DL14 7NP. 1pm. £5.
Hand to Mouth - (Lindsay Hannon/Bradley Johnston) - Lit & Phil, 23 Westgate Rd., Newcastle NE1 1SE. 1pm. £5.
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Evening
Mo Scott Band - Jazz Café, 25 Pink Lane, Newcastle NE1 5DW. 9pm. £7/£5 (in advance).
Taupe - Head of Steam, Neville St., Newcastle. 8pm. CD launch.
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Steve Bone - Al Forno, 81 Skinnergate, Darlington DL3 7LX. 7:00pm.
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To the best of our knowledge, details of the above events are correct but may be subject to alteration.

Sunday, June 12, 2016

CD Review: Michika Fukumori - Quality Time

Michika Fukumori (pno); Aidan O’Donnell (bs); Billy Drummond (dms)
(Review by Lance).
A quite delightful CD by a cosmopolitan trio. Fukumori left Japan to study jazz piano in New York, O’Donnell arrived in New York from Glasgow via Birmingham Conservatoire where he obtained a BMus (Hons) in 2002, while Virginian born Drummond’s CV includes stints with Sonny Rollins, Horace Silver and JJ Johnson.
This is no crash, bang, wallop affair but a relaxing exploration of eight standards and four original compositions. Upon first hearing the name that crossed my mind was Bill Evans, Fukumori has a similar introspective approach. Reflective, probing, discovering unexplored depths to otherwise familiar tunes that had me hanging on to her every note. Repeated listening didn't dispel my initial reaction but it did tell me that she was also very much her own woman. 
As a composer, her music is as intriguing as the titles. The Story I Want to Tell You – a waltz reflecting deep feelings for her homeland; Luz – means light and was written as a prayer for Japan after the Tohoku Earthquake; Cat Walk – a slinky blues dedicated to her feline friends; Quality Time – a medium swinger in 6/8 and an apt title for the album.
Looking Back is a piece by her mentor and tutor Steve Kuhn who also produced the album. Kuhn has done a great job in both roles.
The remaining tracks are: Make Someone Happy; Jobim’s Someone to Light up my Life; Solitude (this not only has the pianist at her most tender but shows O’Donnell to be totally simpatico as, indeed, he is throughout - the Birmingham Conservatoire did a grand job!); Velas; a couple by Bernstein – Lucky to be Me and Somewhere finishing off with That’s All.
Drummond is discreet and effective as befits the nature of the album.
Quality Time? You betcha!
Lance.
Available Summit Records.

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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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