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Bebop Spoken There

Buddy Guy: "My mother said, 'You got flowers for me, give 'em to me now, because I'm not going to smell them when you put 'em on the casket'." - (DownBeat September 2018).

Marty Ashby: "I asked him what his gig was and he said 'I put the scores on the music stands'. I said, 'That's a gig?' And I realised there were four floors of guys like him, who supported some of the finest musicians in the world. But I was a jazz musician, and I was used to playing with some of the finest musicians in the world in front of the New York Public Library for tips. That's when I realised that jazz didn't have the same support system as classical music. - (DownBeat September 2018).

Today Tuesday August 14

Afternoon

Classic Swing - The Ship, Front St., Monkseaton NE25 8DP. 1pm. Free.

Evening

?????

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

Tuesday, August 14, 2018

Classic Swing @ The Ship, Monkseaton - August 14

Bob Wade (trumpet, flugelhorn); Jim McBriarty (clarinet, tenor sax, vocals); Don Fairley (trombone); Malcolm Armstrong (piano); Alan Rudd (double bass); Tommy Graham (drums); Olive Rudd (vocals) + Neville Hartley (trombone), Gordon Solomon (trombone) 
(Review by Russell)
It Don't Mean a Thing sang Olive Rudd. That tells you two things - it's Tuesday lunchtime and you're in Monkseaton. The Ship Inn on Front Street does good business when Classic Swing are in town. Coffee, tea, toasties, a pint or three and some New Orleans to swing-era jazz make this weekly residency an all-round success. 

Bye Bye BlackbirdI Got Rhythm sang band vocalist Olive and she stayed on to tell us, accompanied in a duet with Malcolm Armstrong, Nobody Knows You When You're Down and Out. The frontline - Bob Wade, Don Fairley and Jim McBriarty wielding clarinet -  grabbed solos on There'll Be Some Changes Made, as did depping pianist Malcolm Armstrong.

Monday, August 13, 2018

CD Review: New York All-Stars - Burnin' in London.

Eric Alexander (tenor); Harold Mabern (piano); Darryl Hall (bass); Bernd Reiter (drums).
(Review by Lance).
Recorded at Pizza Express Jazz Club in Soho last November it took only a few bars for me to instantly know that this was going to be nigh unbeatable come December 31 and the CD of the Year listings.
If, like myself, you treasure those old Dexter Gordon, Joe Henderson, Hank Mobley Blue Note albums you will love this Ubuntu Music release (Sept. 7). It's the logical progression and keeps the flame alive and, to quote the album title, Burnin' in London.

Preview: Indigo Voices @ The Globe: August 16

Catch them this Thursday, or else miss out on a thoroughly enjoyable gig. I’m no longer saying that these 5 singers are ‘up and coming’ as in many ways they’ve already arrived. One singer recently appeared with a band, two of them are regulars at local jam sessions, another is an accomplished singer/songwriter, another is a skilled performer in the Globe Women's Jazz Workshops and one of the aforementioned has one of the best voices I’ve heard. So get yourself along, 7.30pm at the Globe, £5 entry.

Performing individually, to the accompaniment of Joel Brown on keys, Paul Grainger on bass, and Rob Walker on drums, will be Carrie McCullock, David Edgar, Jenny Lingham, Miriam McCormick and Jen Errington. Repertoire includes Night and Day; Turtle Blues; You Go To My Head; Come Rain Or Come Shine, Dancing In The Dark and a host of others.
Ann Alex

Is Graeme Souness Miles Behind?

It's not often a sports journalist opens his column with a reference to Miles Davis and Bitches Brew, segues via Barbara Windsor and Carry on Camping before embarking on his main theme which is Graeme Souness and Sky Sport's Super Sunday but the newspaper's Matt Butler manages to do just that in today's edition (Monday, August 13).
You can read the full article here.
Lance.

North4Jazz @ The Globe Jazz Bar, Newcastle - August 12.

Ben Grant (drums); David Keighley (saxes); Adrian Sander (bass guitar).
(Review by Lance).
I could only stay for the first set as I had to be elsewhere but it was long enough for me to establish that North4Jazz was a power trio. Well, maybe not quite 100% power. Sander did his job to perfection but didn't explode which placed the onus on Keighley. A fine saxist, he has the technique, but it's a heavy burden to bear as the sole frontline man when the moment cries out for keys, guitar or another horn to provide contrast and variety. Admittedly, the switch from alto to tenor and back with soprano waiting in the wings as well as the 'Space Oddity' effects conjured from his box of tricks ensured that boredom never set in but I still wanted more.
Maybe it was the 4 in the band's name that suggested there was a missing link - I don't know.
However, having said all that it was still a well-programmed set.

Sunday, August 12, 2018

Jazz Social @ Charts - August 12

Stu Collingwood (piano, vocals); Andy Champion (double bass); Matt MacKellar (drums)
(Review/photos by Russell).
Here's that rainy day said the forecast. Humid, cloudy but the rain would hold off, wouldn't it? A last minute decision found your correspondent in Charts in time to catch the final number -  Days of Wine and Roses - of the second of three sets at the weekly Quayside Jazz Social. 

For Jazz Social read 'jam session'. The session, led by pianist Stu Collingwood, is slowly but surely attracting listeners as opposed to transient circuit drinkers. Joining Collingwood this week were Andy Champion and Matt MacKellar. The house trio could hold its own with the best of them and although one or two musicians dropped by sitters-in continued to prove elusive. 

Polly Gibbons with Strictly Smokin’ Big Band @ Hoochie Coochie Sunday Sept. 16

(Press release).
Strictly Smokin’ have done it again – Anthony Strong, Hailey Tuck, Joe Stilgoe and, in September, the wonderful POLLY GIBBONS will feature with the band at Newcastle’s Hoochie Coochie.
Hot off the back of Jazz FM’s ‘Vocalist of the Year’ nomination, gigs at Montreal Jazz Festival, London’s 606 Club, and a string of dates at New York’s renowned Birdland this month, Polly makes her way north  with her own blend of jazz, blues, and soul to feature with SSBB at Hoochie Coochie.

There’s always this element of surprise from people who haven’t seen her perform,” says James Pearson, Polly’s long-time songwriting collaborator and artistic director at Ronnie Scotts. “She astounds me, too. She’s unpredictable.”
This is certainly another SSBB special guest that is not to be missed.

Saturday, August 11, 2018

CD Review: Wayne Shorter - Emanon

Wayne Shorter (sop/ten); Danilo Pérez (pno);  John Patitucci (bs); Brian Blade (dms) + (second set) BBC Concert Orchestra.
This 3 CD set from Blue Note seemed somewhat familiar before I realised the reason for the feeling of Deja-vu
Back in 2013, I attended an EFG concert at the Barbican by the Wayne Shorter Quartet and, as 2 of the 3 discs were recorded live in London in 2013, I'm guessing that these were from the same concert. The 3rd disc features the quartet in a studio session with the Orpheus Chamber Orchestra. Substitute the Orpheus boys and girls for the BBC Concert gang and you have, virtually, the whole concert reproduced on disc so, I'm going to take the easy way out and repost my original review.
----- 

Charts - hoping to be no. 1

A late Sunday afternoon jam session on Newcastle Quayside...it could/should be a winner. At one time Flynn's was a very successful public house just around the corner from Live Theatre. Its waterfront location proved popular with a weekend crowd out to drink for England. Nothing lasts forever and the place closed. The building stood empty for years...until now. 
Today, following extensive refurbishment and a change of name, Charts is the place to be seen and heard. Yes, being heard is the objective of Stu Collingwood's weekly jam session or 'Jazz Social' as the venue prefers to call it. Four o'clock, Sundays, Stu's trio extends an open invitation to you to turn up and sit in. Great views across the Tyne, decent beers, food if you want it, why not give it a try?      
Russell

Friday, August 10, 2018

LP Review: Thelonious Monk - MØNK

Thelonious Monk (piano); Charlie Rouse (tenor); John Ore (bass); Frankie Dunlop (drums).
(Review by Lance).
Previously unreleased recordings by Monk are always interesting and this one from a 1963 concert in Copenhagen is more than merely 'interesting' it's an absolute gem.
True, we've heard most of the pieces in the studio but, hearing them live is a totally different ballgame as this lovingly restored Gearbox release proves.

Monk is, of course, the quirky, unpredictable, musical alchemist we know and love/hate (delete as applicable) but, for me, the icing on any Monkian cake is Charlie Rouse - in effect, Monk's third arm.
Just as Johnny Hodges was never the same away from Duke, nor was Rouse as effective away from Monk.

Thursday, August 09, 2018

For Louis Armstrong’s birthday we tune in to “Tiger Rag” on a Gramophone

By Simon Rein, Program Manager, Cultural Institute
In 1934 the trumpeter, singer and movie star Louis Armstrong visited a studio in Paris to record his song “Tiger Rag” on a phonograph record that people could play on home gramophones. And while later recordings of “Tiger Rag” made it a celebrated jazz standard, the original recording that captured Armstrong’s passionate and original interpretation faded from memory.
To mark the birthday of Louis Armstrong 117 years ago, Google Arts & Culture and the record label Deutsche Grammophon teamed up to restore and digitize phonograph records like “Tiger Rag” from the label’s archive, and to tell the story of Emile Berliner, who invented the gramophone player and records that brought the music of Armstrong and many other artists to the masses.

Anth Purdy's Swing Jazz Guitar Show @ Dormans Jazz Club, Middlesbrough - August 2

(Review by Ron H)
The August guest night at Dormans took a different turn to the norm in that we had Anth Purdy with his Solo Swing Jazz Guitar Show, which was well received by an audience that clearly included many fans of his style of playing.
Anth started the night with a hot swinging Midnight Jump demonstrating his fine solo guitar technique before paying tribute to Les Paul with one of his own compositions. 

Jam Session @ The Dun Cow, Jesmond - August 8

Francis Tulip (guitar); Deon Krishnan (bass guitars/vocal); Matt MacKellar (drums) + James Metcalf (flugel); Miriam McCormick (vocal); Alex Thompson (alto).
(Review by Lance).
Remember last weekend? The start of the football season and Sunderland were level with Charlton Athletic and Middlesbrough were 2 down against Millwall. We're in the dying minutes and what happens? The Cats grab a last-minute winner and The Smoggies pull back two for an unlikely draw!
So what's all this got to do with jazz?
Well, after last night's fantastic jam at the Caff there was no jam in the world going to follow that even though some of the same musicians were involved.
It had all been swinging along smoothly, maybe a little bland at times, and it looked like a goalless draw was on the cards and then, once again in the dying minutes, up jumps Deon and gives us a vocal version of Chick Corea's Spain whilst playing unison lines on the 5 string of his two bass guitars (the other was a 6 stringer). 3 points in the bag.

Wednesday, August 08, 2018

Jazz Co-op Weekend Workshop @ The Globe, Newcastle: August 4/5

Saturday
(Report by Ann Alex)
There were 20 of us assembled, including 3 basses (upright, guitar, and ukulele bass!); 3 drummers; 3 vocalists; 3 keys players; various saxes including a baritone; and a trumpet and guitar. Imagine that for a big band – a bandleader’s nightmare!

The tutors firstly suggested that we should perform small group improvisations for everyone to hear. This was, I guess, a way to get us going, and for the tutors to find out what we were capable of.  
We came up with the goods. Our next exercise was about rhythm, hands doing triplets and feet going one/two at the same time. DO try this at home – it’ll improve your rhythm and I’m told it’s good for keeping your brain alive as well. To keep our bodies alive, we had lunch courtesy of Waitrose.
The afternoon saw us working on Straight Life (Freddie Hubbard, originally a jazz waltz) and Contemplation (McCoy Tyner, a tune based on scales), assisted by tutor Jamil Sheriff, keyboard player and cat lover. I found the improvisation tricky as I didn’t know the tunes, and we vocalists have to pluck notes from the air, we don’t have stops or strings to guide us. Still, our group (we’d split into 2 sets of players) came up with some interesting versions of these simple but strong tunes. I never did find out what the other group got up to.
To round off Saturday, the whole group listened as we took turns showing what we’d made of the tunes, or did more instant improvisation.

Jazz Café Jam Session - August 7

(Review by Lance).
23 musicians, maybe more, 'jammed' into 3 hours of sheer delight. They came, they blew, they plucked, they sang, they paradiddled, they conquered.
New faces, old faces, both in the audience and in the performance area - I doubt if anyone was disappointed apart from those at the back of the sitters-in queue who maybe arrived too late and didn't make the cut.
Veteran trombonist Neville Hartley made his Jazz Caff debut and proved he could hold his own with the young Turks with some fine playing. Jordan Alfonso left his alto at home and, instead, dazzled on a dazzling tenor - a recent acquisition I wonder? 

Zakir Hussain, Dave Holland & Chris Potter @ Edinburgh Assembly Hall - July 22

(Review by Steve T).
One of my favourite musicians in the world, one of a diminishing number of jazz musicians who can unequivocally claim the status of living legend, and one of the hottest sax players on the planet.
Tabla, bass and sax: a dream set up for me, and I've just missed them at least three times in the past couple of years.
The first time I saw Zakir Hussain, he and John McLaughlin put Shakti back together, to mark the fiftieth anniversary of the partition of India and Pakistan. He's one of the few musicians who can hold his own and, on that showing, trump the guitar colossus. Two decades on, his technique is undiminished, but he's gained in stature and charisma.

Tuesday, August 07, 2018

CD Review: John Bailey - Oneiric Sounds

(Review by Lance).
Oneiric means dreamlike and there is an ethereal, almost soporific feel to this interesting album.
Bailey composed all 14 pieces as well as playing some tasty guitar. It's a game of two halves or rather two suites, one featuring Norwegian bass legend Arild Andersen and the other the amazing saxophonist Julian Argüelles.
Based in the northwest, Bailey teaches guitar at the University of Liverpool and some of the ensemble writing has a distinct northern brass band feel about it. This unusual dimension certainly makes categorisation a problem.

Jam today, jam tomorrow and jam the day after...

This evening (Tuesday 7) sees the first of four jam sessions in three days across Tyne and Wear. The high-quality Jazz Café jam session on Pink Lane (see photo) signs off tonight as the venue closes for its annual summer break. The students aren't around - just wait 'til next month, new names are sure to emerge - but don't let that put you off as some seriously talented musicians will be keen to have a blow. 

Monday, August 06, 2018

Francis Tulip Quartet @ The Globe & Stu Collingwood Trio @ Charts - August 5

Francis Tulip (guitar); Joel Brown (piano); Michael Dunlop (bass guitar); Matt MacKellar (drums).
(Review by Lance).
Much has been posted on BSH about the above musicians, charting their progress as some of them set out on their way with Jambone at Sage Gateshead, others consolidating their technique at local jam sessions before finally emerging in full bloom as a band to be reckoned with at any level.
The crowded bar at the Jazz Coop HQ took me back maybe 50 years to a time when Newcastle really was a 'jazz town'.
The Beatles may have ousted jazz from The Cavern in Liverpool but, in Newcastle, Jazz North East was about to begin the rollercoaster ride that continues to this day producing jazz across the spectrum from home and abroad. The New Orleans Club was open 6/7 nights a week whilst across town, the Down Beat club gave birth to the Emcee 5 - a modern jazz quintet that, in its short life, achieved legendary status before the musicians moved south to become cult figures in their own right. 

Sunday, August 05, 2018

Jude & the Soznak Boys in the Fast Lane - August 5

Tens of thousands of 'petrol heads' were drawn to this year's Newcastle Motor Show. Vintage cars, F1 simulators and trade stands ran the length of traffic-free Blackett St, Monument and Grey Street. Occupying their usual pitch outside Boots (Monument) were Soznak. 
Paul Miskin's outfit basked in the sunshine with multi-instrumentalist Jude Murphy on bass. As your correspondent wandered by Soznak were giving it the Soft Cell...Tainted Loveno less.
Russell.

Saturday, August 04, 2018

7 Virtual Jazz Club's Contest - 3rd Edition

7 Virtual Jazz Club Association – Press release 
Entry Deadline: October 15th.

The 7 Virtual Jazz Club continues its worldwide search for emerging and under recognized creative musicians of all ages and backgrounds. 

THIS YEAR'S CATEGORIES
- Under 25 Students
- Amateurs & Pros

Friday, August 03, 2018

Vermont Big Band in Cullercoats

This poster was spotted whilst trawling the mean streets of Cullercoats. It was displayed inside the Crescendo Club - a lunchtime jazz joint overlooking the sea. Outside, broads in bikinis were strutting their stuff prior to dipping their toes in the briny.
Inside, an assortment of jazz guys was blowing as if there were no tomorrow and, for some, maybe there wasn't. Most of the broads in here were broader and weren't wearing bikinis. Maybe they had, once, a long time ago. Still, the music was good, Capone would have liked it, the booze was cheap and came from one of the local bootleg breweries.

North Berwick Fringe Festival starts today.

Word has seeped out from the other side of Hadrian's Wall of the North Berwick Fringe by the Sea Festival. This runs from today (August 3) to Sunday, August 12 and covers a host of genres including jazz.
Among the artists appearing are Tommy Smith in a solo saxophone recital, Graeme Stephen, Viper Swing, Ali Affleck, Fergus McCreadie Trio, Melanie O'Reilly, Mica Paris (singing Ella Fitzgerald), and a host of others.
For more info visit: https://www.fringebythesea.com/front-page-music/
Lance.

Thursday, August 02, 2018

Francis Tulip Quartet to Light Up the Globe

This Sunday (August 5) at the Globe there promises to be a reprise of last year's memorable concert by the Francis Tulip Quartet. One year on, Francis, Joel, Michael and Matt take a break from their studies to play a couple of sets of GASbook (perhaps Darn That Dream will be in the setlist), contemporary numbers and one or two original compositions. 
If last week's concert at the Lit & Phil is anything to go by Newcastle Jazz Co-op's Railway Street premises could well be standing room only. A huge crowd at the independent library on Westgate Road listened to a full hour's worth of music from the young quartet, insisting on an encore such was the standard of musicianship (see photo). 
Sunday's gig is advertised as a 7:30 start, it's £6 at the door with students admitted for a bargain £3. Catch the Francis Tulip Quartet at the Globe before the guys once again head off across the globe in pursuit of their musical dreams.
Russell           

Meanwhile, Back in Manhattan...

Earlier this year, legendary American pianist/songstress just happened to be in Jesmond where she delighted and surprised the locals by sitting in at the Dun Cow's alternative Wednesday's jam session.
Daryl is unlikely to be there this coming Wednesday but, if you happen to be in New York on Tuesday, August 28, Daryl Sherman's “Too Marvelous For Words" show featuring the music of Johnny Mercer, Cole Porter, Rodgers & Hart/Hammerstein with James Chirillo (guitar) and Boots Maleson (bass) is at the new Birdland Theater, down in the basement of the famous club - get  there for 7:00 or 9:45 PM.
Details: www.birdlandjazz.com/calendar  Birdland Jazz Club 315 W. 44th St. New York, NY 10036 212-581-3080.
If you can't make it - even though airline flights are usually more reliable than the Tyneside Metro - take a chance on the Dun Cow on August 8. Who knows who may sit in - Kate O'Neill, Alice Grace, Elling, Porter?
Lance.

Wednesday, August 01, 2018

Those missing comments...

For those of you, and there are many, who have posted comments and failed to see them appear over the past few weeks/months I think the issue has been solved and, not only should recent comments appear, but also a backlog which I've selectively updated - I hope!
Here are just a few of them:
Hugh on Geordie Jazzman.
Mal Maddock on Chet Baker.
Ray Newton on RIP Clive Gray.
Steve T & Gene Jarred on 1978 Cleveland Jazz Festival.
Carstairs on Taylor Smith & the Roamin' Jasmine.
Joel Fass & Sabine Nagel-Heyer on Marty Elkins' CD Fat Daddy.
Anon on Jazz Café Jam - July 3.
Patti on Frank Sinatra Story @ Whitley Bay Playhouse.
Roly on RIP Bob Bain.
Jukedome on Melfi, Val & The Vs.
Steve Andrews on Jazz Harpists.
So keep the comments coming, the floodgates are now open!
Lance.
PS: If I haven't linked to your comment, please give me a gentle reminder of the subject and the approximate date of posting.

Tuesday, July 31, 2018

July's Best.

CDs
Shake 'Em Up Jazz Band: A Woman's Place/Le Donne Mangiano Zucchero.
Bansangu Orchestra.
Trialogue: First Flight.
Marty Elkins: Fat Daddy.
Chet Baker: Live in London Vol. 2.
Mark Winkler & Cheryl Bentyne: Eastern Standard Time.
Gigs.
Taylor Smith & Roamin' Jasmine @ Kommunity, Newcastle.
Gunhild Carling @ Gala Theatre.
James Morrison Quartet @ Gala Theatre.
Greg Abate @ Jazz Café.
Davina & The Vagabonds @ Sage Gateshead.

As always, purely my personal choice - let's have yours.
Lance.

Classic Swing @ The Ship, Monkseaton - July 31.

Olive Rudd (vocals); Bob Wade (trumpet/flugel/clarinet); Jim McBriarty (clarinet/tenor); Neville Hartley (trombone); Colin Haikney (piano); Alan Rudd (bass); Tommy Graham (drums) + Gordon Solomon (trombone).
(Review by Lance/photos by Russell).
The Metro reached Monkseaton without mishap enabling us to reach The Ship - built in 1688 - just in time for Classic Swing to kick off their regular Tuesday lunchtime session.
Vocalist Olive gave me an effusive greeting saying, "I must have known you were coming as I've included I Wished on the Moon in the setlist." Full marks for remembering that this is one of my favourite tunes.
Good to hear Neville Hartley and, second set, Gordon Solomon on trombone. Their duo choruses brought to mind J and K. The not so good news was that regular trombonist Don Fairley couldn't make it due to ill health.
We wish him well. 

Alice Grace & Pawel Jedrzejewski and The Milne-Glendinning Band @ The Jazz Café - July 27

(Review/photos courtesy of Ken Drew)
The third visit by Jazz North East to the Jazz Café in a week!  Following on from Jesse Bannister/GemArts (co-promo with JNE) last Thursday and a wonderful treat it was, and Greg Abate with the local power trio last Friday (high octane playing all-round) this Friday saw a more relaxed session as part of Jazz North East's 'Women Make Music' series. The programme comprised two sets of distinctive music focusing on vocalist-guitarist collaborations, one well established in recent years and the other recently formed, with many tunes self-penned and performed by our locally based musicians.

Monday, July 30, 2018

Jazz in the Afternoon @ Cullercoats Crescent Club - July 30

(Review by Russell)
A typical Monday afternoon down at the Crescent Club - the Jazz in the Afternoon band plus a few sitters-in. This week, all the way from Oz, Don Armstrong and Harry Stephenson, and, from just around the corner, the Cullercoats Songstress herself, Teresa (no relation to Don) Armstrong. 

When You and I Were Young, Maggie then Sonny Terry and Brownie McGhee's Livin' with the Blues, a regulation start from frontman Herbie Hudson and the boys. More from Hudson the vocalist singing about My Gal Sal, one from the band's other singer, drummer Fred Thompson - I'm Confessin' (That I Love You) - and in no time the first set outer - Back Home in Indiana - with Hudson once more taking the vocal mic alongside the seated Don Armstrong on clarinet. 

CD (EP) review: George Winstone - Outer Spaces

George Winstone (alto sax/composer); Charlie Stacey (piano); Mikeli Montolli (bass); Jamie Murray (drums).
(Review by Lance).
In an idiom where identity has almost become  set in stone (or should that be vinyl?), it comes as somewhat of a surprise to find someone whose style isn't Parker or Pepper, Coleman or Cannonball, Desmond or Dolphy but a player who has incorporated many of those latterday saints into his approach whilst still forging his own identity. Winstone has managed this.
This, however, is a two-edged sword.

Preview: Jazz Planets - Pete Long and The Echoes of Ellington Orchestra

Cadogan Hall, 5 Sloane Terrace, London, SW1 9DQl Saturday, September 8 at 7.30pm
(Press release) 
September 2018 is the centenary of the premiere of Gustav Holst’s much-loved composition ‘The Planets.’  In a unique celebration, bandleader Pete Long (Ronnie Scott’s Orchestra / Jools Holland’s Rhythm and Blues Orchestra) has re-written Holst’s masterwork in the style of Jazz’s greatest composer Duke Ellington.
Pete Long’s ‘Jazz Planets’ will be performed live in concert by The Echoes of Ellington Orchestra in the beautiful Cadogan Hall, one of London’s best concert venues just off Chelsea’s Sloane Square.
 The inspiration for this unusual concept arrived by chance during a long car journey, as Long explains: “Venus from The Planets Suite came on the radio. It suddenly struck me how Ellingtonian the curves of the melody were, and how Holst's warped, flowing harmonic symmetry was so redolent of that of Ellington's composing partner, Billy Strayhorn.  By the time I'd reached my destination, the broad idea of re-orchestrating the whole suite for an Ellington-style orchestra had coalesced.”

Sunday, July 29, 2018

RIP Tomasz Stanko

Polish jazz trumpet player, Tomasz Stanko passed away today. Stanko appeared several times at GIJF as well as the London Jazz Festival and, invariably attracted a large audience of fans who appreciated his free, avant-garde style playing.
Tomasz Stanko was 76.
Rest In Peace.
Lance.
Obituary.

Andy Lawrenson Trio @ Prohibition Bar, Gateshead - July 28

Andy Lawrenson (violin, vocals); Simon O'Byrne (guitar, vocals); Paul Grainger (double bass)
(Review by Russell)
Prohibition Bar's lovingly crafted homage to an era of US bootleg liquor, European decadence and good times came into its own this evening with an appearance by the Andy Lawrenson Trio. A select audience listened intently as a swing dance couple - Anja and Alec - effortlessly evoked the period. 
Le Cafe Parisien is violinist Lawrenson's latest project encompassing the jazz of Reinhardt and Grappelli with Celtic and Romani influences alongside one of the great improvisers of this or any era...JS Bach. Minor Swing established the mood and Lawrenson's first vocal of the evening - It had to be You - suggested the trio's approach would be one of casual virtuosity.  

CD Review: Mark Winkler & Cheryl Bentyne - Eastern Standard Time.

Mark Winkler, Cheryl Bentyne (vocals); Rich Eames (piano); Bob Sheppard (sax); Grant Geissman (guitar); Pat Kelley (guitar on 1 track only); Gabe Davis (bass); Dave Tull (drums); Kevin Winard (percussion); Stephanie Fife (cello).
(Review by Lance).
The blurb says that Mark Winkler and Cheryl Bentyne go together like champagne and caviar. I'm sure they do but, as we impoverished bloggers (we do it for love) don't get many opportunities to sip champers or nibble caviar, I'll just have to take their word for it.
I haven't heard the duo's previous album, West Coast Cool, but I have heard them both individually and, of course, Cheryl's contribution to Man Tran so I knew the pair of them together would be something rather special and I wasn't wrong.
Seven duo tracks and four solos (2 each) make for an outstanding, varied album. Both singers have distinctive voices; Bentyne the cooler, jazzier, Winkler the hotter, more soulful yet together all of those qualities merge into one.
The material is a mix of the familiar, the not so familiar and the, to me, totally unfamiliar.

Saturday, July 28, 2018

Tyneside Cinema: The Geordie Jazzman - a film by Abi Lewis.

(Review by Lance).
You wait a long time for a legend then two come along almost at once. Thursday night, at Washington Arts Centre, The Desert Queen told the story of Gertrude Bell. A lady who defied convention to help make the Arab world a better place.
The Geordie Jazzman told the story of Keith Crombie and the Jazz Café, Newcastle. A gentleman who defied convention to help make the northeast a better place - at least music-wise. Whether either one of them succeeded is debatable. The middle-east is in disarray and jazz has no shortage of warring tribes either.
This was the second time I'd seen the film and, as one of the pundits said afterward, "I picked up on many of the nuances I missed the first time around".
Me too. The man was such an enigma.

Friday, July 27, 2018

Francis Tulip Quartet @ The Lit & Phil, Newcastle - July 27

Francis Tulip (guitar); Ben Lawrence (piano); Michael Dunlop (bass); Matt MacKellar (drums)
(Review by Russell).
This lunchtime concert was a late addition to the published series. Would this fact impact on audience numbers? It did, for the better, with a huge turn out leaving some later comers standing for the duration. Four young men - three of them enjoying a break from their degree studies, the other soon to go to university - playing to an astonishingly high standard, this was the Francis Tulip Quartet. 
Visions opened the programme. Sounding vaguely familiar, it was, of course, a composition by bandleader Tulip. Keep Me in Mind was very familiar, it being a John Scofield number. The youngest member of the quartet, pianist Ben Lawrence, showed what he could do at the Lit and Phil's beautiful piano. 

Strictly Smokin' Big Band with Kermit the frog @ The Millstone - July 26

(Review by Russell)
With the boss absent the temptation was there to get up to mischief, however, MD Michael Lamb can rest easy, on a steamy early evening the boys and girls of the orchestra got down to business, as usual. Keeping an eye on matters, and an ear to the ground, was a very special guest...Kermit the Frog.
F'reez got the show on the road with Let the Good Times Roll and it wasn't too long before his vocal partner-in-crime Alice Grace joined the party, greeting a full house at the Millstone  with the words: Happy heatwave! With Pete Tanton's muted trumpet work AG scatted on Honeysuckle Rose. If there was an admission charge to this regular public rehearsal session - there isn't - it would be worth every penny simply to hear AG sing. And sing again did the Strictly Smokin' vocalist as she insisted, with no little humour, Somebody Loves Me.

Thursday, July 26, 2018

The Desert Queen, a play by David Farn @ Washington Arts Centre - July 26.

Phillippa Wilson (Gertrude Bell); Brian Londsdale (various roles).
(Review by Lance)
I know, I know, not exactly material for a jazz blog but, the pace of the story, the injections of humour and pathos, have all the ingredients of an Ellington suite.
Amazingly, I'd never heard of Gertrude Bell until, maybe, 10 years ago. At school, we learned of such fearless females as Florence Nightingale and Grace Darling but, despite being born about 5 miles away in Washington, Co. Durham, ne'er a word about Gertrude Bell - arguably, one of the most influential women ever.
Tonight's play by David Farn, attempts to redress the balance and I'm sure that anyone who witnesses the show - there's another 9 performances in the region between now and August 6 - will come away fascinated by her story.

Jam session @ The Dun Cow, Jesmond - July 25

Stu Collingwood (piano); Paul Grainger (double bass); Abbie Finn (drums) + Kate O'Neill (vocals); Harry Keeble (tenor); Stu Finden (tenor); Fiona Finden (vocals); Richard Herdman (guitar); Jen Errington (vocals); George Sykes (tenor); Dawn Furness (vocals); Kay Usher (violin); John Rowland (tenor)
(Review/photos by Russell).
Late July, schools out, students gone, would anyone turn up? On another warm evening with the door to the conservatory open the house rhythm section - Stu Collingwood, Paul Grainger and Abbie Finn - set up then set sail on a relaxed Wave. The sitters-in began to arrive in Brandling Park, some by car, some by Metro, some on foot and that most laid back of tenor players, John Rowland, parked his velocipede outside of the Dun Cow. 

Preview: Extra! Extra! Read all about the Francis Tulip Quartet
















Tomorrow (Friday) an extra event has been added to the monthly lunchtime jazz concert series. Four exceptionally talented young musicians will play for sixty minutes, the programme comprising standards and perhaps one or two original compositions. 
Francis Tulip, guitar, Ben Lawrence, piano, Michael Dunlop, bass and drummer Matt MacKellar are enjoying a break from their studies and this additional concert at the Lit and Phil on Westgate Road (near Central Station) in Newcastle is an opportunity for them to get together to play a gig. If you're yet to hear these young men then do make the effort, it's £5 on the door, one o'clock start, you'll be mightily impressed!  
Russell 
Attachme

CD Review: Chet Baker - Live in London Volume 2.

Chet Baker (trumpet/vocals); John Horler (piano); Jim Richardson (bass); Tony Mann (drums). March/April 1983, London.
(Review by Lance)
I think it was in November 1955 that Jeff Kruger, who ran the Flamingo Club on Wardour St., presented Chet Baker in concert at the Royal Albert Hall - as a singer.
At the time, Baker was the trumpet player. He was touring Europe and, like all trumpet players from Satchmo to Dizzy, only sang to give his chops a rest but, because of MU restrictions on foreign musicians entering the UK, he was forbidden to play trumpet.
From what I recall from the reviews back then, his singing wasn't well received. On the jazz front, it was Jimmy Rushing, Joe Williams and George Melly who figured in the polls - none of them shrinking violets - whilst the pop charts in those pre-rock 'n' roll years were dominated by the shouters such as Frankie Laine and Johnny Ray. Even Sinatra hadn't quite recaptured the public as a singer so the fragrant will o' the wisp vocals of Chet were given short shrift. Little did those critics know that, years later, the voice would be ranked alongside the all-time greats.

Kinkajous & Grey Tapes @ Gosforth Civic Theatre - July 25

Kinkajous: Adrien Cau (tenor/bass clarinet); Benoit Parmener (drums); Maria Chiara Argiro, Jack Doherty (keys); Andres Castellanos (bass guitar).

Grey Tapes: Mr Blazey, Bert Verso, Calum Howard, Bain (electronica); Dan Potter (drums).

I hold up my hand and confess that, in a world of horses for courses, I was the wrong horse for this course and, as such, it would be unfair of me to attempt to review something that I didn't understand. 
This parade passed me by completely. 
Cau had some moments on both tenor and bass clarinet but, overall, I was struggling although the others present in the well-attended auditorium were very appreciative of both bands so it looks like I'm the one who's out of step. 
Lance

Wednesday, July 25, 2018

RIP Clive Gray

Just received the sad news that one of the northeast's jazz legends passed away on Monday, July 23.
Clive Gray was renowned not only for his fine banjo playing but also his sense of humour.
When I worked in J.G. Windows Music Store alongside his longtime musical confederate, Ronnie McLean, Clive was a regular customer buying Clarion banjo strings. He was the only person I knew who used Clarion Strings and we had to order them in specially for him.
I once asked him what it was about them that made them so special. Longevity, tonal quality, resonance? 
"Coz they're the cheapest" was his reply.
He played in most of the local trad bands at one time or another including the Vieux Carré Jazzmen, Ronnie McLean All-Stars, and the Savannah Syncopators. In the photo, Clive is pictured in between concerts at the 1981 Breda Oude Stijl Jazz Festival.

Paul Skerritt & James Harrison @ The Jazz Café - July 24

Paul Skerritt (vocals); James Harrison (pianos).
(Review by Lance/Photos courtesy of Mike Tilley).
I'm never quite sure how to categorise this dynamic duo. Individually, they are at the top of their game, but, together, it can sometimes be a little over the top. Fortunately, tonight the balance was just about right. Sure there was the tomfoolery and the shenanigans but there was also the cool vocals and the hard-swinging piano. 
The material ranged from gassers to more contemporary songs delivered in the manner of Postmodern Jukebox. Not many singers can do a Gregory Porter song without coming in a distant second but Paul ran the great man close on Take me to the Alley. The Jazz Café does have a nearby alley but no one took up the option.
The opener, Swingin' Down the Jazz Café, told us that the, soon to be, father of twins had put some thought into the gig and the lyrics were, again, appropriate.

Classic Swing @ The Ship, Monkseaton - July 24

Bob Wade (trumpet, flugelhorn); Jim McBriarty (tenor sax, clarinet, vocals); Don Fairley (trombone); Colin Haikney (piano); Alan Rudd (double bass); Tommy Graham (drums), Olive Rudd (vocals).
(Review by Russell)

If it's Tuesday it must be the Ship Inn. Classic Swing's weekly Monkseaton residency continues to attract a good number of folk to listen to the New Orleans to swing era band fronted by vocalist Olive Rudd alongside explosive trumpeter Bob Wade. 

It Don't Mean a Thing sang Olive and the boys in the band - including Mr Alan Rudd - tended to agree. Out of Nowhere with Wade playing flugelhorn is a favourite of band and audience featuring relaxed solos across the frontline. 

Tuesday, July 24, 2018

A Night in New Orleans: The Shake ‘Em Up Band & Ali Affleck and the Copper Cats @ Edinburgh Assembly Halls. - July 20

Shake Em Up Jazz Band:  Haruka Kikuchi (trombone); Marla Dixon (trumpet/vocals): Chloe Feoranzo (clarinet/vocals); Molly Reeves (guitar/vocals); Julie Schexnayder (bass); Defne 'Dizzy' Incirlioglu (washboard/percussion)
(Review by Kay Collin/Photos are © AJBlairPhotography and may not be used without the permission of Sandy Blair)*
Having heard the Shake Em Up Jazz Band well and truly shake things up in New Orleans last year, Ali Affleck wanted us all to share in her delight, and here they were and so we did. Formed two years ago, the Shake Em Up Jazz band brings together six individually gifted musicians each acclaimed musicians in their own right, and members of various established bands.Their set in tonight’s  performance featured tracks from their first album ‘Le Donne Mangiano Zucchero’ along with many from their new album ‘A Woman’s Place’ (see Lance's review), put together to celebrate and pay tribute to women composers and lyricists, and their legacy of arranging, composing and developing jazz since its earliest days.

Lickety Split @The Globe - July 22

Callum Mellis (trumpet, flugelhorn); Alan Marshall (alto); Paul Gowland (tenor); Eddie Bellis (trombone); Bradley Johnston (guitar); Jeremy McMurray (keyboards); Alan Rudd (bass); Paul Wight (drums) 
(Review by Russell)
Eddie Bellis' West Coast-style eight-piece band was playing its second gig in two days having fulfilled an engagement at the newly reopened Spanish City. The Jazz Co-op's Globe HQ on Railway Street, Newcastle welcomed the return of Eddie and the boys and this evening there was a new face in the line-up - Lambton Big Band MD, trumpeter Callum Mellis.

Jazz Social @ Charts, Newcastle - July 22

Stuart Collingwood (piano); Neil Harland (double bass); Matt MacKellar (drums)
(Review by Russell)
After a delay, it's up and running. The scheduled opening of Charts on the Quayside was put back a week or two and when it finally opened its doors the first of a new weekly (Sunday) jam session - Jazz Social - took place last week. Yesterday, BSH managed to get along to the second installment and it has to be said the former Flynn's public house has been transformed into a comfortable, if not swanky, cafe/bar boasting panoramic views across the Tyne to Sage Gateshead. 

Monday, July 23, 2018

Zoe Gilby Trio @ Great Exhibition of the North, Blackett Street, Newcastle - July 22

Zoe Gilby Trio: Zoe Gilby (vocals); Paul Edis (piano); Andy Champion (double bass)
(Review by Russell).
A second day of jazz in the rather bizarre surroundings of a traffic free, artificial grass-carpeted playground on Blackett Street featured Zoe Gilby singing a selection of standards and original material. BSH made a dash by Metro from Whitley Bay to Monument in Newcastle city centre to catch a third and final set on Sunday afternoon. 

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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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Submissions for review

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.
Similarly, CDs received by post will only be considered if accompanied by sufficient background material.
Finally, bear in mind that this is a jazz-based site when submitting your album.
Lance