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Bebop Spoken There

Piers Paul Read: "Bruce Reynolds and Biggs shared an interest in Sex, Jazz and Hemingway." - (The Train Robbers by Piers Paul Read, Coronet Books 1979.)

George Shearing: "Speaking about Johann Sebastian Bach I think he'd be a real jazzer if he were alive today. I mean any man who has two wives, twenty kids, gets kicked out of the church for being too harmonically radical and drinks beer can't be all wrong can he?" - (Crescendo March 1984.)

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

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If you experience any problems posting a comment, as I understand some readers are, then email it to me direct, stating which post your comment relates to - lanceliddle@gmail.com. Alternatively, try the Anonymous button but please sign your name!
Apologies for any inconvenience, this is due to circumstances beyond my control.

Today Thursday July 19

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.

Alexys de Alfaro: Guitar Dreams with Coco Vega - Prohibition Bar, Arch 3, Brandling Street, Gateshead NE8 2BA. Doors 7:00pm. A ‘jar on the bar’ gig. Guitar & percussion.

Alter Ego - St James’ & St Basil’s Church, Fenham Hall Drive, Newcastle NE4 9EJ. 7:30pm. £10.00.

Jesse Bannister Quartet - Jazz Café, Pink Lane, Newcastle NE1 5DW. Tel: 0191 222 9882. 8:00pm. £10.00. (£8.00. concs.). JNE.

Northern Monkey Brass Band - Jubilee Park, Spennymoor DL16. 6:00-9:00pm. Free. Big BRASS Bash (Durham Brass Festival).

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

Tees Hot Club w. Donna Hewitt (alto); Josh Bentham (tenor); Dave Archbaid (keys) - Dormans Club, Oxford Road, Middlesbrough TS5 5DT. Tel: 01642 823813. 9pm. Free.

Jazz Jam - Fire Station, High Street West, Sunderland SR1 3DT. Tel: 0191 594 7241. 8pm. Free.

Billy's Buskers: Plug in and Play - 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.

Friday, February 09, 2018

CD Review: Walter Smith III - TWIO

Walter Smith III (tenor); Harish Raghavan & Christian McBride (bass - 4 tracks each); Eric Harland  (drums) + Joshua Redman (tenor - 2 tracks).
(Review by Lance)
Since I heard Walter Smith III at Sage Gateshead back in 2013 I've been a fan. So much so that when I opened up the mail that had accumulated since I'd been away, this one jumped out in front leaving the other albums to fill the minor places in the race to the CD player.
My enthusiasm wasn't misplaced - it's a winner!
Ask Me Now is maybe my favourite Monk tune and here it is given a jaunty, almost whimsical treatment that takes nothing away from it.
Kern's Nobody Else But Me has Raghavan and Harland pushing the leader along. He doesn't mind at all - not judging by his solo!
On the Trail pairs Smith III with another tenor ace in Joshua Redman resulting in some non-violent sparring. Two gentlemen working out rather than two dockers on Pier 6! Still, superb playing by both.
We'll Be Together Again dispenses with bass allowing the tenorist total freedom which, whilst he accepts, doesn't take it as an opportunity to print notes at random!
I'll Be Seeing You lopes along nicely with McBride's lines inspirational and Harland dropping a few strategically placed bombs. Smith III has surely the best tenor sound since Getz I.
Adam's Apple: Wayne Shorter's composition could have been written with Walter Smith III in mind, so easily does he respond. He nails it, as does Harland with a compelling and imaginative solo.
The Peacocks: A meditative contemplative reading of the Jimmy Rowles classic before taking off for a brief flight. He returns safely.
Social Call: Gigi Gryce wrote this one and Jon Hendricks made it his. So, how would it fare without a vocal? Answer is that it's such a good tune anyway and, in the hands of Smith III and McBride, it can't fail - with or without words! Delightful!
Contrefact: Redman returns for this Smith III original based on Like Somewhat in Love. This time, the gloves are off but nobody gets hurt and maybe the honours go to McBride for his spritely solo.
Smith III elaborated on the choice of tunes: "I would try and alter tunes quite radically by rearranging, reharmonizing and altering meters to a point where I was barely playing the original song; but realized that I was confusing the point of playing the songs, so I began to interpret them more directly, as they were first meant to be played. For this album, out of around twenty recorded songs, I chose nine pieces that I have a particular relationship with and have always loved playing, including some which are maybe less frequently heard”. 
The idea worked and the end result is very worthwhile and another plaudit for Michael Janisch and the team at Whirlwind. 
Lance.
The album was released today (February 9) on Whirlwind Recordings WR4718. 

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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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