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Bebop Spoken There

Oscar Peterson: "I find most pianists use too many notes in a chord. They double up an awful lot" - (Crescendo May 1963).

Benny Green (British): "...there was a whole race of men who used to stand in front of their bands, waving their arms, pretending to conduct ... Many of the bandleaders we had worked for had been either crooks or imposters ... " - (Crescendo March 1963).

Today Friday September 21


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

Zoë Gilby Trio - Bishop Auckland Town Hall, Market Place, Bishop Auckland DL14 7NP. Tel: 03000 269 524. 1:00pm. £5.00.

Ladies of Midnight Blue - Seven Stories, National Centre for Children's Books, Lime Street, Newcastle NE1 2PQ. Tel: 03000 3301095. 11:00am. £5.00.

Paul Edis - The Lit & Phil, Westgate Road, Newcastle NE1 1SE. Tel: 0191 232 0192. 1:00pm. £5.00. Edis, solo piano.


Ronnie Scott's All Stars - Middlesbrough Theatre, The Avenue, Linthorpe, Middlesbrough TS5 6SA. Tel: 01642 815181. 8:00pm. £22.50.

Groove-a-matics - Billy Bootleggers, Nelson St, Newcastle NE1 5AN. 9:00pm. Free.

George Shovlin & the Radars + Broken Levee - The Peacock, High St West, Sunderland SR1 3ES. Tel: 0191 511 1451. 7:00pm. £10.00. (+ £1.00. b/f). New blues venue.

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

Wednesday, July 04, 2018

The Cat; The [World] Cup; The [Jazz] Caff.

(Report by Lance).
The Cat. Nothing to do with the Jimmy Smith album on Verve but plenty to do with my feline 'friend' Daphne. Yesterday was the day allotted for her annual injections which are reputed to combat everything from Cat Flue to Bubonic Plague. This involves taking her for a pleasant scenic drive to a not too distant vet where needles are stuck into her in a manner reminiscent of a 1950's West Coast jazzman's hotel room.
However, Daphne's no Chet Baker and she resisted all my attempts to entice her into the cat carrier. If I went left, she went right. If I went down, she went up. Furniture was moved, tempting dishes of Gourmet cat food failed to draw her out from beneath the table until, ultimately, I was crawling under the table and Daphne sat proudly defiant above. Vet cancelled - replay on Friday.
The Cup. The O2 Academy in Newcastle was once the Gaumont Cinema and later the Majestic Ballroom where, I think, Harry Bence and his orchestra would swing and sway until ballroom dancing went away and pop groups ruled the day. Beatles, Faces and Manfred Mann were just some of the name groups who appeared there as well as local bands such as The Gamblers, Rue and the Rockets and the still going strong Junco Partners. On rare occasions, there were even Jazz Band Balls.
It then became a Gala Bingo emporium before becoming a rock venue - the O2 Academy - in 2005.
Last night it wasn't a rock gig although it was all very rock 'n' roll inside for the televised England v Columbia World Cup 'game'.
I can't recall ever being in a confined space with over 1000 people around and above me - I usually only go to jazz gigs where there is rarely that many in attendance although a recent jazz festival was reported to have been attended by 70,000 people. However, that was over a period of 11 days and it was in Romania.
The atmosphere inside the Academy was electric and when Harry Kane gave England the lead it erupted. Flares and smoke bombs went off, beers were thrown in the air (not mine, it was too expensive!) and the music blared - inexplicably it was Hey Baby Will You be my Girl? 
Then, just when we thought it was all over, the Columbians equalised.
No flares or smoke bombs went off. No beer was thrown in the air and nobody wanted a sweaty Columbian to be their girl.
Extra time and then penalties. My nails were bitten down to the knuckles, especially when Jordan Henderson failed to score but what did you expect? He's ex-Sunderland. Then the other Jordan [Pickford] made a magnificent save but what did you expect? He's ex-Sunderland. and then it was all over and Harry [Kane], England and St. Jordan [Pickford] had won the day. Celebrations spread out on to the street - I've never been hi-fived so much in all my life!
The Caff. I was swept along with the crowd down Pink Lane to the Jazz Café. Keith Crombie must have been turning in his grave at the sight of so many football fans outside his much-loved habitat. Inside, it was more subdued, tasteful, and a welcome refuge from the mayhem I'd just left.
David 'Showtime' Gray was blowing On Green Dolphin St., John Rowland joined him for St. Thomas, Paul Gowland, on soprano, played Violets For Your Furs and It's You or No One. Abbie Finn was on drums and John Pope on bass. All great stuff on which I won't elaborate further as Russell was patrolling the jazz beat last night - his review will, no doubt, follow shortly.
It had been quite a day!

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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: I look forward to hearing from you.


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