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Bebop Spoken There

Russell Malone: "I remember coming home from school every day and heading straight for the record player to listen to Wes [Montgomery]. I tried to lift what I could from his playing. My homework always came later." (DownBeat July 1999).

Archive

Today Friday February 15

Afternoon

Jazz

Rendezvous Jazz - Monkseaton Arms, Front Street, Monkseaton NE25 8DP. Tel: 0191 251 3928. 1:00pm. Free.

Nik Svarc Steve Hanley Martin Longhawn - Bishop Auckland Town Hall, Market Place, Bishop Auckland DL14 7NP. Tel: 03000 269 524. 1:00pm. £5.00.

Hot Club du Nord - Lit & Phil, Westgate Road, Newcastle NE1 1SE. Tel: 0191 232 0192. 1:00pm. £5.00.

Classic Swing Fri 15 Feb, Mar 1, Mar 15 - Royal British Legion, West Jesmond Avenue, West Jesmond, Newcastle NE2 3EX. Tel: 0191 281 0736. 1:00pm. Free.

Evening.

Jazz Lads - Saltburn Cricket Club. Marske Mill Lane, Saltburn TS12 1HJ. Tel 01287 622761. 8:00pm. £5.00

Anna Reay & Deon Krishnan - The Rabbit Hole, 17 Hallgarth St., Durham DH1 3AT. Tel. 0191 3865556. 7pm. Book in advance.

Blues

Groove-a-matics - Billy Bootleggers, Nelson St, Newcastle NE1 5AN. 9pm. Free.

Boys of Brass - Carter & Fitch, George Washington Hotel, Stone Cellar Road, High Usworth, Washington NE37 1PH. Tel: 0191 402 9988. 8:00pm.

Cedric Burnside + Michael Littlefield & Scott Taylor - Cluny 2, Lime St., Newcastle NE1 2PQ. Tel: 0191 230 4474. 8:00pm. £12.50. + £1.25 bf.

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

Saturday, May 12, 2018

Paul Taylor (solo piano) @ Gosforth Civic Theatre - May 10

(Review by Jerry)
BSH readers are aware that I know nothing about jazz: let me state from the outset that I know less about improvised music. And this was improvised music – “without further ado I’m just going to start playing”. Deprived of my usual reviewer’s navigational aids (pick up on something in the title, latch on to something in the performer’s intro, compare with other pieces in the same genre, mug up something on Google) I approach this journey into uncharted waters with trepidation.  Sticking with the metaphor, advance publicity for The Manchester Jazz Festival where Paul Taylor is appearing in July, refers to his performances as “rhapsodic journeys that lead listeners through twists and turns…,”  and I’d agree with that.
We had two uninterrupted pieces of about 15 minutes each , both full of twists and turns prompting the question: “where is this going next?” and also – in the second piece particularly - “have we been here before?” The overall impression was jazz-like in inventiveness but predominantly classical in terms of sound, to my ears anyway. Both pieces were intriguing in the variety of sounds afforded not only by great dexterity (how many fingers has the man got?) but also by ingenious use of technology: there was a whole orchestra of effects in there from flute to strings and organ to vibraphone to harp. The volume built then faded unpredictably, sometimes with heavy echo making the bass notes palpable then dropping to the faintest of sounds like tinkling wind-chimes before building again in a series of runs, often with the performer’s left hand crossing over the right.

The music was evocative: sometimes vaguely alarming (the second piece opened like jangling bells); sometimes whimsical and enchanting (the vibraphone sounding section in the second piece for example); often thoughtful and reflective in the quieter sections while some louder sections were like a joyous film-theme. Often it made me think of water in all its forms- always changing, never predictable and impossible to define.

Old seafarers’ maps sometimes reported, in remote locations: “here be dragons” but, undeterred, they kept on exploring. I guess improvised music is like that for both performer and audience? I’m intrigued enough to keep exploring and both pieces were well-received by the wider audience.
Jerry.

1 comment :

Ken Drew (on F/b) said...

What a nice open and honest review. It must be jazz as it contains the element of surprise, many times over :) but shows just how accessible 'improvised music' can be.

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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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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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