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Bebop Spoken There

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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, June 13, 2010

Drums? Bass? - who needs them? Saxophonics and the Loco Guitar Trio - Splinter @ the Bridge.

Saxophonics: Keith Robinson (alt), Steve Summers (alt/ten), Graeme Wilson (ten), Niall Armstrong (bar).
Loco Guitar Trio: Dan Byrne-McCullough, Jordie Cooke, Pawel Jedrzejewski (gtrs).
After the previous powerhouse gigs from Extreme Measures, Claude Werner et al the punters could perhaps be excused for thinking that an all acoustic evening sans bass and drums would pale by comparision.
They were wrong - boy were they wrong!
I've heard Saxophonics several time but tonight was the first time they totally blew me away. The harmonies, the solos, the arrangements - mainly by Graeme - but also by Lennie Niehaus (an amazing Ain't Misbehavin'), Ralph Towner and Michael Moore - were complex yet accessible. I've never heard such precise playing since The 29th Street Saxophone Quartet played Newcastle Jazz Festival back in the 1980s and maybe not even then. From the opening Come Fly With Me via (the penultimate?) Wee Small Hours of the Morning/Autumn in New York to the demanded encore we were transfixed by the technique of the players and the resulting blend of sound and solo.
Not that this was a one-way street. Earlier, the Loco Jazz Trio had set a very high benchmark.
The three young men, perhaps slightly nervous at first, played a set - comparable in its own way with that which was to follow - drawing an enthusiastic response all-round.
Opening with a version of Take The A Train that had a distinct Hot Club feel about it they kept the listeners enthralled as they progressed through standards such as Body and Soul, a familiar Martin Taylor tune from some TV advert, Bjork's Oh So Quiet and a Bob Marley tune the title of which I missed. All three played good solos in a set that was a joy to hear.
Their future and the future of jazz is in safe hands.
To follow this, next week we have AVC. Another super session in store - don't miss it.
Lance.

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