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Bebop Spoken There

Andrew Hadro: "It seems to me that everybody just puts out an album, they go through the motions, spend the money and they just sort of throw it out there into the sea of CDs and hope something comes back" - (DownBeat June 2018).

Jonnathan Blake (Blindfold Test): “Maybe it's someone from New Orleans who has lived in New York for a minute.” (DownBeat June 2018).

Today Thursday May 24

Afternoon

Vieux Carré Jazzmen - Holystone, Whitley Road, Holystone NE27 0DA. Tel: 266 6173. 1:00pm. Free.

Evening

Maine St. Jazzmen - Sunniside Social Club, Holywell Lane, Sunniside, Gateshead NE16 5NJ. 8:30pm. Free.

Lambton Big Band - Prohibition Bar, Arch 3, Brandling Street, Newcastle NE8 2BA. 7:00-9:00pm. Free. Public rehearsal session.

Gabriele Heller Trio - The Globe, Railway Street, Newcastle NE4 7AD. 7:30pm. £5.00.

Lindsay Hannon & James Harrison - Jazz Café, Pink Lane, Newcastle NE1 5DW. Tel: 0191 222 9882. 8:00pm. Free.

Jam Session w. Stu Collingwood Trio - Engine Room, Fire Station, High Street West, Sunderland SR1 3HA. Tel: 0191 594 7241. 7:45pm. Free.

New Orleans Preservation Jazz Band - Oxbridge, Oxbridge Lane, Stockton on Tees TS18 4AW. 8:30pm.

Tees Hot Club w. Jeremy McMurray (keys); Kevin Eland (trumpet); Mark Toomey (alto) - Dorman’s Club, Oxford Road, Middlesbrough TS5 5DT. Tel: 01642 823813. 9pm. Free.

Daniel Meade - Billy Bootleggers, Nelson St, Newcastle NE1 5AN. 7:00pm. Free.

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

Sunday, October 01, 2017

CD Review: Stan Sulzmann and John Taylor – Double Exposure

Stan Sulzmann – piccolo, flute, alto flute, clarinet, saxophones; John Taylor – piano, synthesiser
(Review by Hugh C)
It was during my conversation with Nikki Iles at the Late Night Jazz gig at Hexham Abbey Festival that my attention was drawn to the existence of this CD.  My interest was sparked and I sought out a copy.  The CD was actually recorded in 1990 at Sentinel Studios in Cornwall and has (for reasons unspecified) just been released this year.
Stan Sulzmann and John Taylor were invited in 1990 to Cornwall by the studio to spend a few days recording and experimenting with new material and sounds.  At that time Sulzmann owned a Roland D50 synthesiser, which he lent to John Taylor. JT proceeded to completely reprogram the synthesiser and personalise it to his own requirements.  The duo were able to experiment using the synthesiser in improvised duets, as well as performing their compositions with John Taylor on piano.  Some of the new pieces were conceived on site.  This CD shows a side of John Taylor which became unfamiliar in his later years, where he concentrated solely on his first love, his Steinway piano.
Pure and Simple is just that – a jazz duet between soprano sax and acoustic piano.  Slow Loris again sees Taylor at the piano, largely solo, but with a short contribution by Sulzmann on tenor sax towards the end.  Stango features piano and tenor and, as you might expect, transports you to Buenos Aires (not far from Cornwall really!).  In Stango we begin to feel the influences of music other than “jazz”.  The next track Free Ballad takes us to a ghostly world of synthesised sounds.  This is the first of three tracks on the CD with joint compositional attribution – perhaps one of those conceived on at the time of recording.  Despite the word Free in the title, it remains definitely melodic, and to my ear definitely Ballad. 
Extracts (also co-composed) jolts this complacency with repetitive stabbing synthesiser and saxophone turning to abstract riffs and effects.  CD Smith (flute and piano) takes us in the direction of European contemporary music and reflects the artists' influences such as Messiaen, Prokofiev and Hindemith.  Country/Raindrops (co-composed) is (what I would call free), with seemingly (to the untutored ear) random sounds from reeds, flute and synthesiser – I do however get the raindrops component. 
Cartoon/Room for Improvement (flutes/synthesiser) is in a similar vein to the previous track initially, but turns into a jaunty ditty with fine flute and piccolo playing by Sulzmann; piano is added later.  Straight Man has a Messiaenic quality, with spectral extended chords on synth and melodic overlay by Sulzmann's clarinet.  'Q' is a quick fire duel between piano and saxophone which settles into more of a duet over time.  Ocean Deep (piano/saxophone) returns to more of a conventional jazz idiom.  Spider features piano and flute and could perhaps be a sensual combination that draws you into its web.  The final track, Heart, takes us back to where we began – piano and saxophone.   The track deliberately leaves us with a question as it slowly fades to nothing at 5.15

This CD (26 years in gestation) was mastered and edited in 2016 and released earlier this year.  It shows a side of both Taylor and Sulzmann which is probably not familiar to the majority of listeners.  In a London Jazz News podcast, Sulzmann suggests reasons as to why John Taylor may have returned to the piano following his adventures into electronics. Sulzmann himself also now concentrates on the saxophone, and has sold his piccolo and clarinet.
Insightful review?  Perhaps, but a lot of the insight comes from the mouth/pen of Mr Sulzmann himself.
Hugh C
Double Exposure is released on Inversion Records (INV002CD) and is available through Interspear Music, Jazz CDs and Amazon.
The London Jazz News podcast of an interview with Stan Sulzmann is available to download here.

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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.
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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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