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Bebop Spoken There

Nate Smith: "Record labels, booking agents, management, still can't imagine the drummer as bandleader" - (DownBeat January 2019).

Today Saturday December 15

Afternoon

Newcastle University Jazz Orchestra - Hatton Gallery, King's Road, Newcastle University NE1 7RU. Tel: 0191 277 8877. 12 noon. Free.

Jazz Attack - Sage Gateshead, St Mary's Square, Gateshead Quays, Gateshead NE8 2JR. Tel: 0191 443 4661. 2:50pm. Young Musicians Live! YMP Winter Festival. Concourse, free.

Jambone + Folkestra - Sage Gateshead, St Mary's Square, Gateshead Quays, Gateshead NE8 2JR. Tel: 0191 443 4661. 4:00pm. Young Musicians Live! YMP Winter Festival. Sage Two, free but ticketed.

Evening

Strictly Smokin’ Big Band - Gosforth Civic Theatre, Regents Farm Road, Gosforth, Newcastle NE3 3HD. Tel: 0191 284 3700. 8:00pm. £12.00. + bf. Second night of two

Boys of Brass - George Washington Hotel, Stone Cellar Road, High Usworth, Washington NE37 1PH. Tel: 0191 402 9988. 7:00pm. Xmas party night.

Big Band Theory - Traveller's Rest, West Auckland Road, Darlington DL3 9ER. Tel: 01325 468177. 6:30pm. £5.00.

Phil Davids & the Good Times Band - Billy Bootleggers, Nelson St, Newcastle NE1 5AN. 9:00pm. Free.

Horace Silverman & the White Gardenias - The Corner House, Heaton, Newcastle NE6 5RP. Tel: 0191 265 9602. 7:30pm. £7.50.

Baghdaddies - Cobalt Studios, Boyd St., Newcastle NE2 1AP. 8:30pm. £12.00. + £1.38. bf.

Strictly Speakeasy - St Mary’s Heritage Centre, Oakwellgate, Gateshead NE8 2AU. Tel: 0191 433 4699. 7:00pm. £20.00. Lindy jazz ‘Snow Ball.

Cozyjo - Washington Arts Centre, Biddick Lane, Washington NE38 8AB. Tel: 0191 561 3455. 7:00pm. £6.00. (£4.00. concs.). City of Sunderland Youth Jazz Orchestra (Cozyjo) Christmas Cracker.

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

Sunday, May 07, 2017

Snarky Puppy/House of Waters @ Sage Gateshead, May 3

Chris Bullock, Bob Reynolds  (tenor); Mike “Maz” Maher (trumpet/flugel); Justin Stanton (trumpet/ keyboards); Bill Laurance (keyboards); Chris McQueen (guitar); Michael League (bass); Larnell Lewis (drums); Marcelo Woloski (percussion).
(Review by Hugh C/collage by Lance & Steve T).
The Brooklyn-based collective returned to Gateshead three years after their knockout performance in Sage 2.  The last time they were here, bassist Michael League told us, they had looked admiringly into Sage 1, little knowing that they would be back with a near capacity crowd on levels 1 and 2.
Snarky Puppy's considerable retinue of equipment was already on the stage at the start of the concert.  House of Waters' gear flowed away during the interval.  The stage was set, the house was full and this time the band entered to enthusiastic applause and vocal encouragement.  They proceeded to play a more or less continuous ninety minutes of high octane music, the majority from their latest album, Culcha Vulcha.
I attended this event on the recommendation of a friend, and was not disappointed.  Their product is best described (I think) as jazz-funk-rock.  Synthesisers feature quite a lot imparting an almost prog rock-like atmosphere at times.  Sage One had opened part of the floor at the front as a mosh pit for those who preferred to stand.  Individual solos were delivered all round, including a splendid sparring match between percussion and drums near the end.
The band were admirably supported by newly signed GroundUP artists, House of Waters.  Michael League (entering the house to unexpected silence) introduced the newcomers and their novel format of hammer dulcimer (Max ZT), six string electric bass (Moto Fukushima) and drums (Luke Notary).  The trio played the first 30 minute set before the interval.  They featured both previous material and tracks from their latest, eponymous, album. 
I was not expecting to write a review, and therefore took no notes.  Luckily, Snarky Puppy have brought their recording engineer with them and are releasing downloads of each of their UK dates on the following day.  Glasgow's was not of sufficient quality to release, but Gateshead and Manchester are both available in MP3 or FLAC format.  This epitomises the progressive attitude of Snarky Puppy and their label, GroundUP.  Their promotion and support of up and coming bands is exemplary.  In the fevered post-Brexit referendum, pre-election political atmosphere I am glad to say that no conventional politics entered the hall.  However, just before the encore there was some political oratory from Michael League – the audience were reminded that musicians receive very little from streaming sites (the main beneficiaries being the owners of the sites themselves and the large record companies releasing their back catalogues) if we want music to survive and thrive then buy the product (physical or digital) from the musicians themselves and tickets for live performances, right?
Sage Gateshead performance available here.
Set list:
1.      Binky
2.      Semente
3.      Whitecap
4.      Beep Box
5.      Tarova
6.      Palermo
7.      Young Stuff
8.      Big Ugly
——
9.      Shofukan
From Michael League:
 Our first time in Gateshead/Newcastle in 3 years, finally playing the big room at the famous Sage. Standing audience down front, seating behind and on the sides. Michael eases Binky in. Bullock and Maz play on it. The band really takes its time on the gradually waning outro section. Things get weird. Semente gets a solo from Bill on Rhodes. Bob Reynolds plays on Whitecap. Beep Box is extra spacious on the outro with Justin and McQueen laying out for a bit under Maz’s solo. Tarova is slow and funky. Bill takes a Moog solo. Palermo is a highlight. Bullock takes the solo and Marcelo plays around the crowd’s clapping on the outro. Bob takes the first solo in Young Stuff and Justin takes a rare Moog solo on the vamp. Big Ugly gets two solos from McQueen after Maz takes the vamp. Justin plays on Shofukan, then Larnell and Marcelo duel it out to close out the evening. A beautiful sounding room with a lively crowd.
Hugh C

1 comment :

Steve T said...

Thanks for that Hugh, I was planning to do it but got bogged down in Cheltenham.
I too was recommended it but was surprised by how rockstar it was. I recall the last time I saw the Unthanks and figured the dry ice and lightshow would mark the end for the folkies and this could be the same for the Jazzers, though lots of Jamboneers and Early Birds there. Personally, coming from a rock background, at least from 71 to early 74 I like a good light show.
While I enjoyed it, I didn't love it; it was very Jazz, funk, rock without being either Jazz funk or Jazz rock and certainly not smooth. It's probably more prog rock than anything else and the percussion duel reminded me (and a couple more old Genesis nuts) of the old Phil Collins and Bill Bruford or Collins and Chester Thompson partnerships.
I took a few photos really to illustrate the lightshow but each time it seemed to explode in light. However I'll send them to Lance and he can decided if he wants to do anything with them.

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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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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 all of them other than those we are able to answer with a positive response.
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