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Bebop Spoken There

Ernie Wilkins: “If you don't look at the liner notes, you don't know who in the hell it is. Everybody sounds alike, that same million-note approach. Faceless.” – (Crescendo November 1975).

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Ben Williams: “A lot of jazz today has developed this allergy to simplicity. ‘If it’s simple, that means it’s not hip’ is a theme. But sometimes the simplest thing you can do is the hippest thing you can do.” – (Down Beat August 2015).

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Archives.

Today Wednesday March 22

Afternoon.
Vieux Carre Jazzmen - Crescent Club, 1 Hudleston, Cullercoats NE30 3OS. 1pm. Free.
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Evening.
Take it to the Bridge - The Globe, 11 Railway St., Newcastle NE4 7AD. £1. 8pm.
Paul Skerritt Band - Cherry Tree Restaurant, 9 Osborne Rd., Jesmond, Newcastle. 7:30pm. No cover charge.
Levee Ramblers NOJB - Springwell Village Community Venue, Fell Road, Springwell, Gateshead NE9 7RP. 8:30pm. £3.00.
John Harle and Steve Lodder - Royal Grammar School, Eskdale Tce., Jesmond, Newcastle NE2 4DX. 7pm. £20 & £10. 60th birthday tour for RGS alumnus Harl.
Chris Sharkey Trio - Jazz Café, 25 Pink Lane, Newcastle NE1 5DW. 8pm. £4.
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To the best of our knowledge, details of the above events are correct but may be subject to alteration.

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Northern Monkey Brass Band @ Ushaw Durham Jazz Festival. August 26

(Review by Russell/Photos courtesy of John Marlor)
A Buddy Bolden blast heralded a new jazz festival in County Durham. New Orleans, Louisiana to Ushaw College, Durham. Jazz, a common language, the music lives on!     
The inaugural Ushaw Durham Jazz Festival started in true festival style with Graham Hardy’s Northern Monkey Brass Band. The Tyneside-based trumpeter sat high in the gods of the Exhibition Hall – the site of a chapel dating from the early 1800s – poised,   ready to declare the inaugural Ushaw Durham Jazz Festival well and truly ‘open’.      
The Exhibition Hall, a theatre for all kinds of performances, welcomed the first of the weekend’s festival goers to Ushaw College. Once seated, Hardy blew the first notes, a host of heads turned, looking up at ‘Buddy Bolden’ Hardy. Fellow trumpeter Alastair Lord, to Hardy’s right, replied, piercing sunbeams streaming through the stained glass windows behind him. Trombone and tuba, awaiting the call in the stone floor corridor, joined the procession to the stage. The Northern Monkey Brass Band, respectful of the heritage, yet of today, mixed it up with theme tunes known to all: The A Team and Star Wars. The region’s heritage took its place alongside N’Awlins with Hardy announcing the band would ‘New Orleans it up’ on an original take of Waters of Tyne. Second line respect and abandon.
The all-action ’bone man David Gray gave it a blast on Monkey Blood with the depping Rob Walker enjoying himself with just a snare drum to hit, getting into the spirit with an always encouraging Brendan Murphy accenting this way, then that, on bass drum.
Band leader Hardy arranged St James’ Infirmary Blues. The band marched out and along the corridors of Ushaw College. The audience could do but one thing…join them! In the absence of a parade marshall, this was a DIY affair. Ushaw reverberated to the Northern Monkey sound, long-gone senior clergy looking down (dis?) approvingly from their gilt-framed portraits hanging from the erstwhile seminary walls. One wag was heard to say: It’s a lang walk!  On returning to the hall David Gray and tenor man Jamie Toms ripped into the band’s finale: Superstition. A fine start to the first Ushaw Durham Jazz Festival.
Russell.      
Graham Hardy (trumpet), Alastair Lord (trumpet), Jamie Toms (tenor saxophone),
David Gray (trombone), Mark Ferris (trombone), Phil Rosier (tuba), Rob Walker (snare drum) & Brendan Murphy (bass drum)        

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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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