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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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Today Wednesday July 18

Afternoon

Vieux Carré Jazzmen - Cullercoats Crescent Club, 1 Hudleston, Cullercoats NE30 4QS. Tel: 0191 253 0242. 1:00pm. Free admission.

Evening

Take it to the Bridge - The Globe, 11 Railway Street, Newcastle NE4 7AD. 8:00pm. £1.00.

Gala Big Band: BRASS for Sir Bobby - Durham Miners’ Hall, Flass Street, Durham DH1 4BE. 7:30pm. £10 Durham Brass Festival.

Reel Brass + Shake ‘Em Up Jazz Band - Front Street, Chester le Street, Co. Durham DH3. 6:00-9:00pm. Free. Town centre street performance. Durham Brass Festival (Street Ceilidh).

Steve Glendinning & Debra Milne - Dun Cow, Brandling Village, Jesmond, Newcastle NE2 4RS. 8pm. Free.

Big BRASS Bash - Timothy Hackworth Park, Shildon. 6:00-9:00pm. Free. Durham Brass Festival.

Northern Monkey Brass Band - Timothy Hackworth Park, Central Parade, Shildon DL4 1DL. 6:00-9:00pm. Free. Big BRASS Bash (Durham Brass Festival).

Community Hall New Orleans Band - Springwell Village Community Venue, Fell Road, Springwell, Gateshead NE9 7RP. 8:15pm £3.00.

Moonshine Sessions - Billy Bootleggers, 28 Nelson Street, Newcastle NE1 5AN. 8:30pm. Free.

Tyne Valley Junior Jazz Ensemble + Tyne Valley Youth Big Band + Tyne Valley Big Band - Phoenix Club & Bar, Chisholm Place, Hexham NE46 1QL. 6:00pm. Donations.

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

Friday, March 23, 2018

CD Review: Jeff Williams - Lifelike

Jeff Williams (drums); Gonçalo Marquez (trumpet); John O’Gallagher (alto saxophone); Josh Arcoleo (tenor saxophone); Kit Downes (piano) & Sam Lasserson (double bass)
(Review by Russell). 
In 2015 Jeff Williams recorded his third album as leader on Whirlwind Recordings. Outlier received rave reviews and this 2017 recording is likely to garner similar plaudits. Lifelike is his follow-up with much the same line-up although guitarist Phil Robson opts out having relocated to New York, John  O’Gallagher, alto saxophone, makes the trans-Atlantic crossing in the opposite direction and from a recent first gig together in Portugal, trumpeter Gonçalo Marquez comes on board. Otherwise, it’s an unchanged roll call – Josh Arcoleo, tenor, Kit Downes, piano and bassist Sam Lasserson.
Lifelike has a running time of a little over sixty minutes and it’s another live recording from London’s Vortex Jazz Club. Lifelike’s seven tracks, bar one, were written by bandleader Williams and if there is a common thread it’s the ever-present sense of swing that is no doubt embedded in the leader’s musical DNA having served his apprenticeship with the likes of Stan Getz, Lee Konitz, Joe Lovano and Cecil McBee. The sound is contemporary, forward-looking but it knows where it’s coming from. Some of the compositions were first released on earlier albums and hearing them played in concert  by this enhanced sextet line-up at the Vortex is rewarding listening. Trumpeter Marquez makes his mark on the opening track Under the Radar; fleet, nimble, abstract, expressionistic, a musician who has quickly assimilated Williams’ compositional ideas. The Interloper swings with Arcoleo’s tenor, a calling card follows in the form of O’Gallagher’s alto, and a constant throughout the recording is the cohesive ensemble work; Dream Visitor and the pensive, taut, fifties’ bop-like flame burning on the 1990’s composition Lament being just two examples.

Borderline finds Arcoleo wrestling with his tenor and, having tamed it, falls in with a joyful ensemble section, all the while directed by drummer Williams’ first-rate musicality. Gonçalo Marquez’ Canção do Amolador is ushered in by the composer’s tentative intro and in no time the sextet is engaged in a freeish, storming workout. Kit Downes, as ever, has it all covered, prompting, probing, playing the right thing at the right time. The album’s closer - all ten minutes plus of it - Double Life features yet more scorching tenor from Josh Arcoleo and that man Downes signs off in style. Jeff Williams is on a roll recording such high-quality material on Michael Janisch’s label. Let’s hope there is another in the pipeline.         
Russell          

Lifelike by Jeff Williams is released on Whirlwind Recordings (WR4721) on April 20th with a CD launch gig at the Vortex, London on April 3rd. Further dates into the summer months include April 6 at Brighton’s Verdict and April 12 at Birmingham Conservatoire’s purpose-built East Side Jazz Club.         

1 comment :

Dani Raestar said...

As amazing as the Lifelike recording is 'live' it's on another level. Your chance to see for yourself 3 April at The Vortex where it all happened. To book tickets: http://www.vortexjazz.co.uk/event/jeff-williams-lifelike-album-launch/

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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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