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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.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Customs House Big Band with Ruth Lambert @ Customs House, South Shields. March 23.


The South Tyneside based big band played the first of two nights at the Customs House in front of a three quarters full auditorium.
Led by Peter Morgan, the band ran through a familiar set of big band charts opening with a Glenn Miller number (please, no more Miller!), then some good stuff - Here's That Rainy Day, Witchcraft and, with the introduction of Ruth Lambert, we heard Come Fly with Me and Blue Moon.
Ms. Lambert was in fine voice soaring effortlessly above the band, her natural jazz phrasing kept in check - to a degree.
After our vocalist departed the stage for a change of costume in readiness for her next set, the band played a funk version of Stardust that didn't quite work - Stardust is Stardust - best left alone. I Got Rhythm - a feature for trombonist Gurgit-Smith - did work - somehow it always does.
The interval allowed just enough time for a pint of Young's Kew in the Steamboat (South Tyneside's CAMRA Pub of the Year - yet again).
Back at the Customs House, Jazz Police, a tune by Gordon Goodwin (of Big Phat fame), was a steamer - just the sort of tune to launch the second set on the right course.
Temperatures rose a degree or two with the re-introduction of Ruth Lambert. Black Coffee encapsulated Ruth's ability to deliver a lyric in a low, then high register, in a single line. Diamonds Are a Girl's Best Friend was fun and the evening's entertainment drew to a close with, as an encore, Groovin' Hard.
MD Peter Morgan was good value - a comic entertainer in his own right. The rhythm section was rock solid from the off with new boy Jack Lowe acquitting himself well on double bass and electric bass. Alan Marshall took most of the tenor solos. The star performer on the night (together with Wor Ruth) was alto saxophonist Jill Brett who contributed two or three well-crafted solos.
Hear the band do it all again tonight (Wednesday 24th) at the same venue. In the autumn the orchestra will present a concert of show tunes. It is to be hoped this will be a selection from the Golden Era (whenever that was). Please, as with Glenn Miller, no Andrew Lloyd Webber!

Russell

1 comment :

Liz said...

Oh I agree Russell...at least with "no ALW" always thought I was in the minority on this ..but no there is hope out there! Seriously though all his work sounds the same to me..yet his appeal knows no bounds apparently
Liz

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