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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.

Today Saturday February 25

Afternoon

Tees Valley Jazzmen - Devonport Hotel, 16-18 The Front, Middleton One Row, Darlington DL2 1AS. 01325 332255. 1:30pm. Free.

Evening

Bradley Johnston (Solo guitar) - Cherry Tree Restaurant, 9 Osborne Rd., Jesmond, Newcastle. 7:30pm. No cover charge.

Redemption - The Globe, 11 Railway St., Newcastle NE4 7AD. 8pm. £5.

Rendezvous Jazz/ Levee Ramblers NOJB 'At the Jazz Band Ball 2' - The Exchange, Howard St., North Shields NE30 1SE. 7:30pm. £10/£8.50.

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

Sunday, July 10, 2016

Black is the Color of my Voice - Customs House, South Shields. July 9.

Apphia Campbell (performer)
(Review by Lance).
This one woman show wasn't a tribute to Nina Simone in the form of an "And then Nina Recorded a song which charted at..." In fact, Nina wasn't mentioned although the show's fictional Mena Bordeaux was as much Nina as Apphia was herself.
Campbell held the audience firmly in her hand - she was Simone - and the events that shaped Simone's life such as the assassination of Martin Luther King were given the importance they deserved. Those of us old enough to remember tragic events such as the Birmingham, Alabama, killing of 4 black schoolgirls showed emotion as the memories of that era came flooding back.
Simone recorded many protest songs and Campbell interpreted then perfectly, displaying the quality of the music and the angst of the lyric.
They weren't always sung from verse to coda. Frequently, just  half a chorus, but always enough to get the message across.
A message that still needs to be got across - today more than ever! The gunanigans  in Dallas, Minnesota and elsewhere that seem to be happening daily in America would hardly be tolerated in a banana republic let alone in the world's most powerful nation.
Back to the music.
The songs were superb; I Loves You Porgy; Love me or Leave me; I Put a Spell on You; The Look of Love; Don't Ever Go; Wild is the Wind; Let it Shine; We Shall Overcome; Young, Gifted and Black; I Wish I Knew How it Felt to be Free and, finally, Feeling Good.
An actor, as well as an interpreter of songs, Campbell's rich, soulful, contralto filled the theatre touching hearts and maybe consciences along the way.
The Customs House show was the penultimate one of the tour, The final one is at the Mercury Theatre, Colchester on August 31.
Lance.
PS: Although the recorded backing worked well, I'd have liked to have had a live band incorporated in the show - or even just a pianist. After all Nina Simone did play fine piano...

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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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