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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 Sunday June 17

Afternoon

Musicians Unlimited - Park Inn, Park Road, Hartlepool TS26 9HU. Tel: 01429 233126. 1pm. Free.

Get in the Band rehearsal - Sage Gateshead, St Mary’s Square, Gateshead Quays, Gateshead NE8 2JR. Tel: 0191 443 4666. 10:00am-6:00pm. First of two rehearsals under the direction of Chris Sharkey (second rehearsal Thurs 21 June, 6:00-10.00.pm) 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.

Big Gig in the Park: Durham Music Service Ensembles - South Park, Parkside, Darlington DL1 5TG. 12 noon.

Alice Grace & Ben Helm - Bonbar, Fenkle Street, Newcastle NE1 5XU. 1:30pm. Diners’ gig.

Somethin’ Blue - Vesuvio, 3a Houndgate, Darlington DL1 5RL. 5:00pm. Tel: 01325 788564. Matt Case (saxophone) & Mike Hepple (guitar).

Sour Mash Trio - Billy Bootleggers, Nelson St, Newcastle NE1 5AN. 3:00pm. Free.

Evening

Mark Williams & Joel Byrne-McCullough - Black Bull, Bridge Street, Blaydon NE21 4JJ. 8:00pm. £5.00.

Jazz Jam - Head of Steam, Reform Place, Durham DH1 4RZ. 7:30pm. Free. Durham University Jazz Society. Last one before the Summer recess.

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

Thursday, February 09, 2017

Southport Jazz Festival : Birmingham Conservatoire Ellington Orchestra - February 5.

MD, Jeremy Price. Featured pianist (Far East Suite), John Turville.
(Review Steve T/Photos courtesy of Neil Hughes © Robert Burns.)
Brexit! Trump! Who cares? Let's have some Ellington. So spoke Jeremy Price and I think we all agreed.
It all began with the rhythm section: piano, guitar, bass, drums, with Price on trombone as the rest of the horns marched in to take their seats, playing as they came: four trumpets, three trombones and five saxes. The festival was gagging for a stage full of musicians, reflected in our appreciation. 
Trumpets are out, one trombone left, down to tenor, cut.
Years ago, when the time came to face the beast, my strategy was to sprawl through multiple box sets and key albums from the mid-fifties onwards, when such things began to appear.
I had decided to not even try to identify pieces, but Price kept it simple, doing them in threes: A Flat Minor, Half the Fun and Harlem Air Shaft; Flirty Bird, Idiom 59 and Koko; Across the Track Blues, Happy Go Lucky and Rockin’ in Rhythm.
A Train to finish and the Ella Fitzgerald arrangement which keeps us waiting for the main melody, and I think I've heard the Durham Gala Big Band do it this way.
They left the way they came in, down to big Jimmy Blanton.
The second set was the Far East Suite, a genius choice, a seriousambitious and difficult late work. Across the two sets we were given a wonderful contrast between early Ellington, which established him as the maestro for many of the greats (Miles, Mingus, Gil Evans, Cecil Taylor, Archie Shepp) across countless short pieces, in keeping with the technology of the times, and Ellington the elder statesman, highly respected as one of Americas greatest ever composers, in the era of the fortyish minute album.
The musicianship, from fourth years to first years, was of an astonishing level, with not an ounce of slack anywhere. Special mention of Sam Wright, swiftly switching between tenor and clarinet, and the only lady on the stage, which was something of a theme for the day. And my journey towards total acceptance of the clarinet continues.
I came out in search of a pee and a pint but everywhere was deserted: the loos, the lounge, the corridors, the bars, the only occasion this happened over the two days.
Back in the hall, the applause was raucous, encouraged by Price doing a brilliant job with the announcements, encouraging us to ease up on the reverence, smiling faces and thumbs going up across the room.
Appropriately it was Sam Wright’s clarinet that finally brought things to a close.
I've no doubt many there would have had this as the gig of the festival. 
Photos.
Steve T.

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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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