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Bebop Spoken There

Brian Harvey: "The exciting day arrived and we [as under age school boys] snuck into the [pub's] rehearsal room, sat awkwardly to attention on hard chairs in a row facing the band and heard our first - very loud - live jazz. What an occasion that was - we even drank beer because we understood that's what jazz people did and that's what the band were drinking." - (Just Jazz June 2020)

Dave Rempis:Ten years from now, I can see musicians streaming concerts in real time and charging a minimal amount for people to watch.” - (DownBeat September 2013)

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As we all know there are no live gigs taking place in the immediate future. However, any links to jazz streaming that are deemed suitable - i.e. with a professional approach - will be considered for posting.

Sunday, December 06, 2009

SPLINTER @ THE BRIDGE - NEWCASTLE

This was a JAZZATHON!
Nonstop from Noon till late evening it was standing room only as the cream of the local crop were heard to their best advantage.
I missed most of the opening set from Splinter but what I heard sounded good.
Splinter were followed by HCW and AVC. Look to Russell for review of the three openers.
By the time the Mark Williams Trio - that's Mark on guitar, David Carnegie (dms) and Paul Susans (bs) - took to the stage I'd settled in ready to face the music if you'll pardon the pun. I should explain I was coming off the back of a cold and still felt a bit groggy.
Mark was simply superb playing original compo's that soon took my mind away from the fever. So smooth and mellow, or so I thought before he went into, according to Russell, a John Schofield blast. With David Carnegie punching things along and Paul Susans big fat bass sound adding to the overall this raised the bar by about ten metres and it was a 'follow that' situation.
Ruth Lambert took up the challenge and did indeed 'follow that' - in a duo set with Mark remaining on stage.
Not that it was easy for Ruth - a few mic./speaker problems caused some uncertainty but she kept her cool and the audience were behind her so that by the time she laid out "This is Always" it was okay.
Zoe and Andy Champion followed with their duo set which included "Take it Easy - But Take It" - words and music by Bebop Spoken Here correspondent George Milburn.
Nice one George.
Then came the surprize - a duet by Zoe and Ruth! No less a number than Peggy Lee's "I'm a Woman - w-o-m-a-n."
Brought the house down. Well done girls.
The Claude Werner Quartet with Claude on tenor, Mark Williams on guitar, Laurence Blackadder (bs) and David Carnegie (dms) played some interesting pieces. In particular, "Sweet Stories" caught my ear with it's delicate 3/4 rhythm that suddenly burst into flames with Claude's gladiatorial entry.
It was all very enjoyable then suddenly, in the final number, it exploded into a metallic like thrash that had guitar and tenor screaming into orbit like two comets soaring through an inter gallactic explosion.
Whew!
This was it - nobody could follow that! Not least the Safe Sextet.
Who?
This is the resident band from the Jazz Café and with Paul Gowland and John Rowland on tenors and Don Forbes, tumpet, they went for it! Steve Doyle (dms), Barrie Ascroft (bs) and Alan Laws (pno) kept it all moving with Alan playing some fine two-fisted piano and the horns 'blowing for gold'.
An excellent hard bop set that lost nothing by comparision.
Saxophonics and Alter Ego were yet to come - Extreme Measures having pulled out - but by this time I was ready to join the walking dead so I opted out.
All in all a successful day that I hope carries on in the coming Sunday evening gigs - next week it is HCW and Legoland.
Well done Adrian Tilbrook who organised, played drums, took photos, handed out packets of crisps, compered and generally kept things running to schedule. If you read this, Adrian, you will know your hard work was appreciated.
Lance.
PS: If asked to award a 'Man of the match award" It would have go to Mark Williams for his sheer versatility in so many different settings.

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