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Bebop Spoken There

Jeremy Pelt: "In my experience, the hottest player on the scene is almost always the most annoying motherfucker on the scene because they know that they're hot." - (DownBeat June 2019).

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2019 Parliamentary Jazz Awards

The voting is open between now and May 31 to enable site visitors to nominate their choices in the various categories of this year's APPJAG awards which can be done here.
BSH was very proud to be nominated and to win the 2018 Media Award and hope we can have your support again this year.

Today Sunday May 19

Afternoon

Jazz

Anth Purdy: Swing Jazz Guitar - Blyth Battery, The Links, Blyth NE24 3PQ. 10:00am-4:00pm. Free. 'Blyth Battery Goes to War Weekend'.

Vieux Carré Hot 4 - Spanish City, Spanish City Plaza, Whitley Bay NE26 1BG. 12 noon. Free.

Musicians Unlimited - Park Inn, Park Road, Hartlepool TS26 9HU. Tel: 01429 233126. 1:00pm (doors 12 noon). Free.

Alice Grace & Ben Helm - Bonbar, Fenkle St., Newcastle NE1 5XU. Tel: 0191 232 8695. 1:30pm.

Jazz Social - Charts, Quayside, Newcastle NE1 3DX. Tel: 0191 338 7989. 4:00pm. Free. Jam session with house trio (James Harrison, piano).

Blues

Memphis Cruisers - Billy Bootleggers, Nelson St., Newcastle NE1 5AN. 3:00pm. Free.

Archie Brown & the Young Bucks - The Schooner, South Shore Road, Gateshead NE8 3AF. 5:00pm. Free.

Evening

Jazz

Sue Ferris Quintet - Black Bull, Bridge St., Blaydon NE21 4JJ. Tel: 0191 414 2846. 7:30pm. £7.00. Blaydon Jazz Club.

Philip Clouts Quartet - The Globe, Railway St., Newcastle NE4 7AD. 7:30pm. £10.00 (£7.00 student).

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

Friday, November 02, 2018

CD Review: Brad Whiteley - Presence

Brad Whiteley (Piano); Matt Pavolka (Bass); Kenneth Salters (Drums); Tom Guarna (Guitar); Michael Eaton (Saxophone).
(Review by Max Goodall)
From New Yorker Brad Whiteley comes an album of great contrasts. Whiteley has for a long time enjoyed working within a number of different styles and musical contexts. Always open to getting involved in new interesting projects; the last few years have seen him appear as (amongst other things) keyboardist in the pit band of the Broadway musical Avenue Q, Musical Director and Organist of the Church of the Blessed Sacrament in the Bronx, Keyboardist with the Regina Spektor Band and composer for PBS Learning Matter show School Sleuth

In the follow up to his debut album as bandleader (Pathless Land – released in 2014) he draws on many of these contexts in separation.

The album opens with the bold, brash, 7/8 romp of Dusk; with its jagged and repetitive unison lines in guitar and bass. The tune has an excellent sense of light and shade, resolving in a lovely moment of clarity, before running headlong back into the established groove.

However, this rock-influenced tune is far from representative of the album’s whole. I mentioned different musical spheres appearing in isolation. Well, across the rest of the album we get snatches of free (Dawn), GoGo Penguin-esque modern pop-influenced ideas (The Unwinding) and more classic, albeit intelligently constructed, swingers (Sunset Park).

This illustrates Whiteley’s range as a composer. His intelligent use of time and tempo changes in, for example, Sinking Feeling are hugely effective. Moreover, he simultaneously displays a sensitive touch in the album’s title track. Despite this though, on Presence, it is his 11 original compositions which take centre stage.  While his playing is at times very enjoyable and fiercely proficient, he is occasionally out-shone by his band members. For example, Michael Eaton’s equal-parts scintillating, and chaotic playing on Sinking Feeling, evoke a sense of disintegration as alluded to by the track’s title.

My only significant criticism of Whiteley’s writing is that his taste for free breakdowns, in both time and structure, seem to yearn to resolve back into a tune and a re-establishment of order: a yearning which is regularly frustrated. Ultimately, however, this is a greatly enjoyable album. Stand-out tracks include Dusk, Sunset Park and Presence. Its eclecticism in a way allows it to become an album suitable for almost any taste.
Max.
Presence was released on Destiny Records on Oct. 5.

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