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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)

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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.

Monday, July 05, 2010

A visit to the factory. Blue Jazz Voices @ The Sage.

Lindsey Hannon (vcl), Karen Rann (sop), Jeff Smith (alt/ten), Steve (gtr), Dave Parker (bs), Michael Howard (dms) + Andrea, Gaby, Ann Alex and many more vocalists.
There are so many jazz singers emerging - mainly female - that I suspect they outnumber just about every other known species including the blackbird of whom so many divas are keen to say farewell to informally (3-3).
I've long suspected that they are delivered on a conveyor belt clutching a volume of the Great American Songbook and tonight I sourced it
BSH correspondent Ann Alex has waxed lyrical about her jazz vocal classes at The Sage, Gateshead in these very pages so, as they were having an open event, I decided to go along.
Situated in an internal alleyway alongside the Sage café area it has to be said that this particular nook is much more sympathetic to a jazz club atmosphere than just about anywhere else in the building. Apart from interruptions from the tannoy announcing the start of concerts in other halls the ambience here was superb and the acoustics too did the performers favours they don't get on the Concourse.
The 'apprentices' were set a high benchmark by 'Foreman/Supervisor' Lindsey with her version of Angel Eyes. A really sensitive take on the number one saloon song of all time (One For My Baby runs it close.)
With such a teacher it isn't surprising there were a few star pupils - Gaby I knew from The Chilli and she excelled with a brilliant scat chorus on It Don't Mean a Thing.
There were countless versions of Good Morning Heartache but one Andrea edged it by a country mile with just a suggestion of Dinah Washington to her rendition.
However, this isn't the X Factor and I'm not Simon Cowell! They were all great in their enthusiasm and commitment. Our gal Ann scored brownies by breaking away from the balladry with a spirited version of All Of Me.
Needless to say the songs - presumably part of the curriculum - were classic and none better than I'm Thru With Love. Others included Imagination, If I Were A Bell, I Concentrate On You - by one of the few male singers - and What A Difference a Day Made.
Behind them the band did the business with guitarist Steve depping for Caroline Lee. Steve did good - will someone please remind me of his surname? Dave and Michael kept the ship steady. The horns got a good unison sound on Carnival.
No doubt Ann will keep us informed of the future progress of this dedicated and talented group of songsters.
Lance.

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