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Bebop Spoken There

Lionel Loueke: "A mistake is just for the moment - make it the best mistake it can be, and that's it" - (JazzTimes, April 2019).

Archive

Today Thursday April 25

Afternoon

Jazz

Vieux Carré Jazzmen - Holystone, Whitley Rd., Holystone NE27 0DA. Tel: 0191 266 6173. 1:00pm. Free.

Tees Valley Jazzmen - The Merry Monk, Market Place, Bishop Auckland DL14 7NP. 12:30pm. Free.

Evening

Jazz

Eliot Smith Dance: Triple Bill - Newbiggin Maritime Centre, Church Point, Newbiggin by the Sea NE64 6DB. Tel: 01670 811951. 7:30pm. £14.00. (£12.00. concs., £30.00. family). Performance inc Poppy (music composed by Jason Holcomb).

Julija Jaceniate Trio Black Swan, Westgate Road, Newcastle NE1 1SG. Tel: 0191 261 5618. 8:00pm. £6.00. (£5.00. concs). Jacenaite (vocals), Steve Glendinning (guitar), Paul Grainger (double bass).

Paul Skerritt Band - The Pennyweight, Bakehouse Hill, Darlington DL1 5QA. Tel: 01325 468411. 8:00pm. Free.

Paul Donnelly Quartet - Dormans Club, Oxford Road, Middlesbrough TS5 5DT. Tel: 01642 823813. 8:30pm. Free. Tees Hot Club: Dormans Jazz Festival.

Maine Street Jazzmen - Sunniside Social Club, Hollywell Lane, Sunniside, Gateshead NE16 5NJ. Tel: 0191 488 7347. 8:30pm. Free.

New Orleans Preservation Jazz Band - Oxbridge, Oxbridge Lane, Stockton on Tees TS18 4AW. 8:30pm. £2.50.

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

Friday, June 01, 2018

Strictly Smokin’ Big Band @ The Millstone - May 31

(Review by Russell).
Last Thursday in the month down at the Millstone public house it’s the Strictly Smokin’ Big Band’s public rehearsal night. May’s session featured no fewer than six deps across all sections. It didn’t make a jot of difference with the band on form from the off and, what’s more, some thirty minutes before the downbeat all seats in the upstairs function room were occupied. It was a warm, humid evening yet the windows remained closed, perhaps to comply with licensing restrictions on noise levels.

So, the band hit the ground running with Alice Grace singing That Old Black Magic. That is reason enough to get along to the band’s rehearsal session – fantastic! Ja-Da with Michael Lamb leading the way with some blistering trumpet playing before the fabulous Alice Grace returned to confess You Make Me Feel So Young. Tyneside and the wider north east region boasts many fine singers, Ms Grace is right up there with the best of them and nothing but nothing could match her take on a Songs for Swingin’ Lovers’ masterpiece.


How D’Ya Like Your Eggs in the Morning? enquired F’reez of Alice, Alice, in turn, asking the same of F’reez. All good fun! A tremendous, lazily slow, arrangement of Bobby Hebb’s Sunny featured a soulful F’reez at his best. MD Lamb raided Dave Slonaker’s big band pad for something just a little more contemporary, choosing Point of Departure from the American’s Grammy-nominated Intrada album. A Bob Mintzer chart – ‘a Spanish thing’ said Lamb – maintained the contemporary feel with a bona fide American, trumpeter Pete Tanton, wearing a brightly coloured Hawaiian shirt, sharing the honours with tenor man Paul Gowland.

The interval; a rush to the downstairs’ bar, another pint of Workie Ticket and a nicely chilled Pinot. Right on cue Brian and Jimmy walked through the door. Never on time for the first set, but always in time for the second, they joined the queue at the bar.                       

A swinging Sweet Georgia Brown resumed matters, a contemporary piece with the band clapping as one opened and closed the unnamed piece (note to self…ask MD Michael Lamb about the title) and Quincy Jones’ Jessica’s Day mixed it up, keeping the orchestra on its toes. The deps were on top of matters, no question about it: Elliott Todd bolstered the trumpet section, Tom Dowling made a return to the ’bones, Niall Armstrong wielded baritone in Laurie Rangecroft’s absence, Ben Helm subbed for Pav on guitar, and the man at the back, bassist Paul Grainger, didn’t miss a trick. That leaves Dave Kerridge. Up from Teesside, DK is little heard on Tyneside yet when he does turn up he certainly makes a big impression. Alice Grace returned to sing Don’t Think Twice, It’s All Right. It was a more than an alright evening down at the Millstone.   

Russell.

Michael Lamb MD, Elliott Todd, Pete Tanton, Dick Stacey  trumpets; David Barnes, Keiran Parnaby, Tom Dowling, John Flood trombones; Dave Kerridge, Paul Gowland, Steve Summers, Keith Robinson, Niall Armstrong reeds; Ben Helm guitar; Graham Don piano; Paul Grainger double bass; Guy Swinton drums; Alice Grace, F’reez vocals

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