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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 Thursday February 23

Afternoon
Vieux Carré Jazzmen - The Holystone, Whitley Rd., Holystone, Newcastle (ish) NE27 0DA. 1pm. Free.
Evening.
Maine St. Jazzmen - Potters Wheel, Sunniside, Gateshead NE16 5EE. 8:30pm. 0191 4888068.
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Strictly Smokin' Big Band - Millstone, Haddricks Mill Rd., South Gosforth, Newcastle NE3 3DB 7pm.
Indigo Jazz Voices - The Globe, 11 Railway St., Newcastle NE4 7AD. 7:30pm. Free.
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Tees Hot Club w. Gus Smith (vocals); Richie Emmerson (tenor); Bruce Taylor (keys) - Dorman's, Oxford Rd., Middlesbrough. 9pm. Free.
New Orleans Preservation Jazz Band - Oxbridge Hotel, Oxbridge Lane, Stockton on Tees. 8:30pm.
Pocket Jazz Orchestra - The Ship, Church Lane, Redmarshall TS21 1EP. 8pm. Free.
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To the best of our knowledge, details of the above events are correct but may be subject to alteration.

Tuesday, November 01, 2016

CD Review: Mercury – Sea Speak

Tom Thorp (saxophones & bass clarinet), Richard Jones (Fender Rhodes), Thomas Dibb (guitar), Gavin Barras (bass guitar) & Johnny Hunter (drums) + Mark Lewis (percussion, track 3)
(Review by Russell)
Two Meanings opens Mercury’s album Sea Speak with Tom Thorp’s extended, ethereal tenor saxophone introduction. There is little movement for five minutes, or thereabouts, until Richard Jones’ Fender Rhodes awakens, similarly bassist Gavin Barras slowly but surely enters the conversation. Drummer Johnny Hunter takes the bull by the horns with an energetic workout before the tune dives into the deep from whence it came.

Seven tunes, the second, the eponymous Sea Speak, emerges from the shallows with the soprano playing Tom Thorp soon shrouded in a Fender mist. Bass and drums navigate a steady course until all are submerged once more. It is on soprano that bandleader Thorp stretches out on Winterbrook, an all-too-brief Scatter precedes Thorp’s bass clarinet on Atlas with Thomas Dibb playing a considered, understated solo encouraged all the way by Hunter’s sparkling kit work, as is Thorp having switched to soprano.
Thorp impresses on tenor on the penultimate, medium tempo track – Hanging Gardens – which just about sums up the album: subtle, restrained groove.
All compositions are by Thorp with the exception of the closing track – Phalanx – which is a three-way collaboration between Thorp, Dibb and Jones. It is an all together different affair – a lively, pulsating number with Thorp obliged to ‘push the envelope’ on tenor.      
Russell.    
Sea Speak by Mercury is available at: www.mercurymanchester.co.uk

Mercury will be touring Sea Speak into 2017 with a date at the Jazz Café, Newcastle on Friday 25 November.       

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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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