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Bebop Spoken There

Michael Dease: "Slide [Hampton] is also one of the people to expand the range of the horn, so he's popping out high Fs like they're breakfast cereals." - (JazzTimes Oct. 2019).

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 Saturday October 19

Afternoon

Jazz

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

Dave O'Higgins Masterclass - Hurworth Grange, Hurworth Road, Hurworth, Darlington DL2 2BN. 12 noon - 2:00pm. £20.00. A Jazz Blowers' event, places limited. Details: www.jazzblowers.co.uk

Tees Valley Jazzmen - Central Methodist Church, 21 Cockton Hill Rd., Bishop Auckland DL14 6EN. 2:00pm. £4.00. A memorial concert in memory of Gavin Belton.

Miles Davis: Birth of the Cool - Tyneside Cinema, Pilgrim Street, Newcastle NE1 6QG. Tel: 0191 227 5500. 5:45pm. Screening of Stanley Nelson's documentary film (2019, cert. 15, 1hr 55mins).

Evening

?????

Blues/Funk/Soul

Teresa Watson Band - Billy Bootleggers, Nelson St, Newcastle NE1 5AN. 9:00pm. Free.

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

Saturday, July 31, 2010

Memories of Martin Drew (Wembley’s most famous drummer) by Adrian Tilbrook

I first met Martin Drew in the late '60s at The Mandrake in Soho. It was the place to head for after your gig finished so you could check out the great Phil Seaman who was the on-off (more off than on!) drummer with resident pianist Joe Burns' Trio.
Martin and I would be invited to sit in by Phil so that he could hold court at the bar. I was working at the Palladium with Val Doonican at the time and Martin was carving out a career as a jazz musician, poles apart as they say. But life has many twists and turns and only a few years later I bumped into Martin at Ronnie Scott's. By now he was the ‘House drummer' and I was playing at the club with the headlining band Back Door. It was during this time that we became good friends and mutual drum anoraks!
Martin would bring in a different cymbal almost every other night and would want to know how it sounded during a particular tune or was it better or worse than the one he had used the previous night! He would also sit watching you play and would give you a hard time if your performance wasn’t up to the previous night's (all in good humour). We would also meet during the day to have marathon drum sessions at the club, really annoying manager Pete King trying to work in the back office. Martin used to give him hell and call him ‘Shylock’.
We would all end up in the Greek restaurant across the road, Jimmy’s, for a £5.00 all you can eat dinner (Martin always got his £5’s worth!).
Over the ensuing years I would often see Martin playing with the Ronnie Scott Quintet and, as ever, he would be playing with great taste and enthusiasm and above all else great musicianship. He was still enthusiastic about the art of drumming and always talking about the new breed of ‘Super’ drummer that emerged during the mid 80s, in particular he was a great fan of US drummer Dave Weckle. Martin even adopted the double bass drum pedal that Weckle used. I always thought this to be an unusual piece of hardware for a straight ahead drummer but Martin, as always, wanted to keep up to speed (literally!) and would call it his secret weapon, “it help the punters to know when the drum solo is finishing” bubada-bubada-bubada-bubada...
Since the tragic news of Martin's death I have been looking at the many video clips of him playing (YouTube) and one thing strikes you about him as a drummer/musician, and that’s his 100% concentration, have a look yourself, he is totally immersed in the music, always listening and responding in a musical and restrained way.
I don’t have to go into the list of world class musicians who have benefitted from Martin's musicality as that information is well documented, but I would like to say that Martin always had a smile and a joke (usually very corny) the latest gossip, a new cymbal for you to hear.
Last time I saw Martin was at the Corner House gig with Mornington Lockett and Laurence Cottle, and as usual he was enthusing about some new young players and how great his new band was and how he was hoping to try out a new range of Sabian cymbals etc, etc, etc....
I will remember with affection spending many a happy hour talking shop and watching him play and that will be my lasting memory of a giant amongst the jazz and drumming community.
Hi Adrian .. Martin Drew here the most famous drummer in Wembley - Ha Ha only joking, any chance of a gig for my amazing new band its ...
Adrian Tilbrook.

2 comments :

Lance said...

A wonderful tribute to a great guy.
thank you Adrian.

Steve Doyle said...

I saw Martin several times at Ronnie Scott's and of course heard him many more times on recordings. I never got to speak to him but always admired his playing. He was the first drummer I heard that played out of the band, sometimes too much but his playing taught and inspired me to at least try and do the same. Apart from Buddy he was also the first drummers name I could remember in the Jazz idiom, and for a kid of around 15 who played rock A la Zeppelin/Purple etc that in its self is quite an achievement because now I really think about it, he must have been one of the most influential people drumming wise in my life as his drumming opened the Jazz door for me.
I can remember at 15, asking my teacher at the time what was this guy doing? where was the two and four snare? I think my teacher had given me something with Martin playing on it along with Big Swing Face. Wow my eyes were opened....Thanks John.

So I like many others I suppose will now revert to that great resource YouTube and renew our relationship with Martin and learn something new again.

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About this blog - contact details.

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