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Bebop Spoken There

Sting: "It was great. They [the River City Jazzmen] all wore blue suits. The band had been together for about twenty years, which was the same age as the suits." - (Melody Maker Sept. 22, 1979).

Archive

Daily: July 6 - October 27

Precarity John Akomfrah’s film (2017, 46 mins) about Buddy Bolden - Baltic Centre for Contemporary Art, Gateshead Quays, South Shore Road, Gateshead NE8 3BA. Tel: 0191 478 1810. Screenings at intervals during the day. Part of Akomfrah's exhibition Ballasts of Memory. Exhibition (daily) July 6 - October 27. 10:00am-6:00pm. Free.

Today Monday October 21

Afternoon

Jazz

Precarity John Akomfrah’s film (2017, 46 mins) about Buddy Bolden (see centre column).

Jazz in the Afternoon - Cullercoats Crescent Club, 1 Hudleston, Cullercoats NE30 4QS. Tel: 0191 253 0242. 1:00pm. Free admission.

Miles Davis: Birth of the Cool - Tyneside Cinema, Pilgrim Street, Newcastle NE1 6QG. Tel: 0191 227 5500. 3:00pm/5:30pm. Screening of Stanley Nelson's documentary film (2019, cert. 15, 1hr 55mins).

Evening

?????

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

Monday, July 05, 2010

Alter Ego @ Queens Hall, Hexham - Friday 2nd July

Keith Robinson (alto sax); Niall Armstrong (tenor & flute); Dave Hignett (trumpet & flugel); Andy Hawking (keyboards); David Francis (drums); Ken Marley (double bass) (up from Stockport as sub for Ian Paterson).
They were the 1st band I blogged, at the same venue, for this site early last June. With Keith Robinson very much present this year both on alto and as leader, no guitarist (a plus for me) and a stand-in double bass player, Alter Ego gave a wonderfully honed and spirited performance. Maybe due to the combination of barbeque weather, football & tennis, the turnout was a sparse twenty odd, yet dedicated fans, including Terry Ellis, jazz guitarist of Last Exit fame.
Bobby Watson's Love Remains demonstrated fully for me how far Alter Ego have come since June 2009 - David Francis chose the soft sticks on the toms, capturing a sultry Latin feel, as the piece moved off against the fading Caribbean light. Hignett's flugel danced tantalisingly in front of the band followed by Niall's deft flute solo, while Keith's alto swayed in silhouetted harmony with the flute, bass and palms. The arrangement reminded me of Gil Evans' late 40's phase - La Paloma-esque - but this time with Andy Hawking providing a subtle, Bill Evans on holiday in Cuba, touch on keyboards.
Building on the holiday theme, a more contemporary surprise came in set 2 - a Les Hooper piece from 1987 called Coastal Breeze; not an easy one to pull off in a faster rumba style but this band has really worked things out: such an expressive control of the waves, the rise and fall, ebb and flow, created what was a distinct scent of ozone as Ken Marley's bowed bass solo seemed to move longingly over the perfect contours of a sun-kissed beach!
This year, after prolonged loud applause, we got that well-deserved encore - a short but sweet delivery of Pam Watson's Ms.B.C. dedicated to Betty Carter and 1st recorded by Art Blakey's JM in 81.
In June 2009 I awarded man-of-the-match to Dave Hignett on trumpet and flugel horn ; this year is no exception but, like the German football team, Alter Ego play so well together with their heads up, they all scored goals - a fine game ; 6:0!
George M.

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Bebop Spoken Here -- Here, being the north-east of England -- centred in the blues heartland of Newcastle and reaching down to the Tees Delta and looking upwards to the Land of the Kilt.
Not a very original title, I know; not even an accurate one as my taste, whilst centred around the music of Bird and Diz, extends in many directions and I listen to everything from King Oliver to Chick Corea and beyond. Not forgetting the Great American Songbook the contents of which has provided the inspiration for much great jazz and quality popular singing for round about a century.
The idea of this blog is for you to share your thoughts and pass on your comments on discs, gigs, jazz - music in general. If you've been to a gig/concert or heard a CD that knocked you sideways please share your views with us. Tell us about your favourites, your memories, your dislikes.
Lance (Who wishes it to be known that he is not responsible for postings other than his own and that he's not always responsible for them.)
Contact: lanceliddle@gmail.com I look forward to hearing from you.

Submissions for review

Whilst we appreciate the many emails, texts, messages and other communications we receive requesting album/gig reviews on BSH, regrettably, we are unable to reply to all of them other than those we are able to answer with a positive response.
Similarly, CDs received by post will only be considered if accompanied by sufficient background material.
Finally, bear in mind that this is a jazz-based site when submitting your album.
Lance