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Bebop Spoken There

George Shearing: "Speaking about Johann Sebastian Bach I think he'd be a real jazzer if he were alive today. I mean any man who has two wives, twenty kids, gets kicked out of the church for being too harmonically radical and drinks beer can't be all wrong can he?" - (Crescendo March 1984.)

Archive

Today Thursday December 12

Afternoon

Jazz

Vieux Carré Jazzmen - Holystone, Whitley Road, Holystone NE27 0DA. Tel: 0191 266 6173. 12:00pm. Free.

Note earlier time for this week only!

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Evening

Jazz

Hot Club du Nord - Lubetkin Theatre, East Durham College, Willerby Drive, Peterlee SR8 2RN. Tel: 0191 518 2000. 7:00pm. £10.00. (£5.00. under 18s). 'Jazz at the Lubetkin'.

Gala Big Band - Gala Theatre & Cinema, Millennium Place, Durham DH1 1WA. Tel: 03000 266 600. 7:30pm. £10.00. (£8.00. concs.). ‘Gala Big Band Does Christmas’.

Durham University Big Band - Dunelm House, New Elvet, Durham DH1 3AN. Tel: 0191 334 1777. Free. 7:30pm. ‘Jazzy Christmas’.

Indigo Jazz Voices - The Globe, Railway Street, Newcastle NE4 7AD. 7:30pm. £5.00. (£2.00. student).

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

Tees Hot Club w. Gus Smith (vocals); Dave Stansfield (tenor sax); Ted Pearce (keys) - Dorman’s Club, Oxford Road, Middlesbrough TS5 5DT. Tel: 01642 823813. 8:30pm. Free.

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

Blues/Soul/Funk/Etc.

?????

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

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Angela's Special Edition

When it comes to jazz and poetry all wrapped up in one package I usually show more than a soupcon of suspicion. This dates back to a lunchtime jam session at the Corner House one Christmas Eve and local poet Keith Armstrong reading an epic about the closing of the Derwenthaugh Coke Works. Coming, as it did, after "C Jam Blues" and "Indiana" it could have been subtitled "The Party's Over".
Since then jazz and poetry, with the exception of Mingus' "The Clown", have been kept at ear's length.
However, along came Angela J.Elliott whom I've referred to in previous posts and my position has changed. Angela has kindly sent me a demo of a forthcoming album which contains several of her poems, all jazz based in both content and accompaniment, that get to the very heart of the jazz existance.
Original words - set to music by Coltrane, Miles, Horace Silver, Duke Jordan and Lee Morgan - are interspersed with Angela J's personal take on standards and a nerve tingling interpretation of Jon Hendricks' setting for Monk's "Ask Me Now".
Behind all this, the guys of Special Edition; Louis Cennano (bs), Barry Parfitt (kbds), Graham Pike (tpt/flug/harmonica/vocal) and John Salter (dms), provide enough musical Benzedrene to keep Angela flying. Click here.
Love it.
(Keith Armstrong, referred to above, has added his comments and included his own moving item in memory of Chet Baker; "Chet - From a Window".
So that it doesn't get overlooked I've moved the thread back up the pecking order.)

5 comments :

Angela J Elliott said...

Many thanks Lance for the wonderful review of the album. It makes all the difference to have words of encouragement. Are we big in Newcastle or what!
Angela

keith armstrong said...

actually derwentaugh was written and performed by graeme rigby - though i had a few lines to read out as part of it!

never mind!

hope you enjoy this! not too sad for you i hope!

CHET - FROM A WINDOW

(in memory of Chet Baker 1929 -1988)

The constant onslaught of Amsterdam
surged through Zeedijk
on that hot night
when a full moon
dragged you
flying to your death.
In your room,
in the Prins Hendrik Hotel,
your clothes lay
neatly folded
in your suitcase,
with your body
a foetus on the street below.
Great white hope
fallen
offstage,
a love for heroin never shaken.
Sorrow was your stuff,
a plaintive,
lyrical anguish,
an excess of gloom
and charm.

This undernourished and parched body,
a singing corpse,
searching for an uncollapsed vein,
an expert driver hating the road
and the bleak hotel of his doom.
Such a foolish love.

Oklahoma farmboy on a golden trumpet,
his teeth knocked out in San Francisco,
become chained to an album a day
for a thousand dollars in cash.

And the Italian you learned in a Lucca jail,
your spirit surviving its deportation,
a lonely and melancholy master drifter
whose pianissimo
touched the soul.

Friday 13th May 1988,
Chet’s heart stopped
and his horn
lost its tongue.



KEITH ARMSTRONG

Lance said...

All is forgiven! My apologies to Graham Rigby and yourself.
The Chet piece was so moving, evocative and, yes, sad. That sadness, tempered with the memory of his music,is all there in your poem and, as such, I no longer feel quite so sad.

Angela J Elliott said...

Beautiful writing. I wish I could hear it with music. My own personal take on much jazz poetry is that when it's 'performed' the 'readers' often do just that - read, with no inflection, no emotion, just lifeless reading. I've tried to get away from that kind of delivery.

Thank you so much for sharing this fantastic story of Chet Baker. He's one I've so far overlooked.
Angela

keith armstrong said...

many thanks.
see you at a gig soon i hope.

keit armstrong aka the jingling geordie!