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Thursday 6: Vieux Carre Jazzmen - The Holystone, Whitley Road, Holystone, North Tyneside NE27 0DA. Tel: 0191 266 6173. 1:00pm. Free. OUTDOOR gig.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Scarborough Jazz Festival

A cracking weekend with a lot of good jazz and very little of the not so good; or perhaps I should say 'not to my taste' In the latter group were Courteney Pine's 'Tribute to Sidney Bechet' - can you think of a more bizarre coupling? Even Ronnie Scott's famous joke - "Jim Dale Sings Thelonius Monk" - pales by comparision! Then there was 'Tango Siempre', which translates into "Tango Forever". I imagine they are in great demand for marathon dance contests. They describe their music as a fusion of Jazz and Tango and hail from Bristol.
On the plus side were some knockout punches from the Guy Barker Jazz Orchestra doing the "Amadeus Project", Empirical, Alan Barnes' Ellingtonians and The BBC Big Band featuring Clare Teal (right) who swung her ass off (not literally) on "Cheek To Cheek" and "Teach Me Tonight". "A Tribute to Atlantic Jazz" gave the festival a booting start with their Ray Charles' alumni, Fathead Newman, Hank Crawford, inspired charts. Trumpet player Steve Parry hit some high ones as did Bruce Adams who hit some even higher ones with the Ellingtonians. It was a good weekend for trumpet players with Guy Barker and Martin Shaw also on form.
Alan Barnes compered with his inimitable humour as well as playing alto and clarinet; he even sat in with a youth band; "The EASY Jazz Orchestra".
A star.
The weekend closed with that other Claire - Claire Martin (left) who put in her usual 100%. Claire also gave "Cheek to Cheek" a workout and a half.
The resulting cheek to cheek battle of the Cla(i)res? A score draw.
For photos click here.

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