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Bebop Spoken There

Bill Reglein (JJ Babbitt m/pieces): "We made this mouthpiece for Eddie Harris. He played tenor sax and trumpet. He played in some pretty rough bars. The story goes that he was afraid he'd get in a fight and get his teeth knocked out. He figured that if even that happened he could still play tenor. So, the request came in, 'Can I get a reed mouthpiece for my trumpet?' the company made exactly one." - (DownBeat October 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 Sunday September 22

Afternoon

Jazz

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

Vieux Carré Hot 4 - Spanish City, Spanish City Plaza, Whitley Bay NE26 1BG. 12 noon.

Musicians Unlimited - Park Inn, Park Road, Hartlepool TS26 9HU. Tel: 01429 233126. 1:00pm. Free.

Sunday Jazz in the Crypt - Middlesbrough Town Hall, Albert Road, Middlesbrough TS1 2QJ. Tel: 01642 729729. 2:00-6:00pm. £12.00. + bf. Line-up: Noel Dennis Trio + Emma Johnson’s Gravy Boat + Anthony Strong.

More Jam - The Globe, Railway St., Newcastle NE4 7AD. 3:00pm. Free.

Jazz Social - Charts, Quayside, Newcastle NE1 3DX. Tel: 0191 338 7989. 4:00pm. Free.

Somethin' Blue Trio - The Pennyweight, Bakehouse Hill, Darlington DL1 5QA. Tel: 01325 468411. 5:00-7:00pm. Free.

Blues/Funk/Soul

Memphis Cruisers - Billy Bootleggers, Nelson St, Newcastle NE1 5AN. 3:00pm. Free.

Evening

Jazz

Alexys de Alfaro - Revoluçion de Cuba, Cloth Market, Newcastle NE1 1EE. Tel: 0191 917 7076. 6:00pm. Free.

Paper Moon Trio - The Globe, 11 Railway St., Newcastle NE4 7AD. 7:30pm. Free.

Fabled - Bridge Hotel, Castle Garth, Newcastle NE1 1RQ. Tel: 0191 232 6400. 8:00pm. £8.00. & £6.00. JNE.

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

Wednesday, December 08, 2010

Customs House Big Band with Ruth Lambert @ All Saints' Church, Cleadon. December 7th.

Peter Morgan (MD & bass trombone), Ruth Lambert (vocals), Paul Riley-Gledhill, Michael Lamb, Ken de Vere, Kevin Eland (trumpets), Gareth Weaver, Chris Gurgi-Smith, Michael Fletcher (trombones), Jill Brett & Elaine Willis (alto saxophones), Alan Marshall & Tom Quillian (tenor saxophones), Bill Brittain (piano), Roy Willis (guitar),Tom Pattison (bass), David Francis (drums) The Parish Hall of All Saint's Church in Cleadon can best be described as ''homely''. In the Late 2010 Ice Age it was a pleasure to be seated with a warming cup of coffee amidst baubles and tinsel. The stage was somewhat crowded before the band assembled. Two Christmas trees flanked the rhythm section resulting in the other band sections having little option but to set up on the floor of the hall.
The opener, In the Mood, did just that - it got the audience in the mood. Now this isn't usually a tune I'd wax lyrical about, however, on this occasion you should have heard the trumpet section - wow! They were on the money from the off.
Basie's Ya Gotta Try is a tune to talk about (make that any Basie tune). Tenor duo Alan Marshall and Tom Quillian traded on this one and it was but a taste of things to come. Tunes came thick and fast.
The introduction of vocalist Ruth Lambert raised the temperature to Fever pitch. Lambert's versatility was evident with a change in tempo on a beautiful reading of Embraceable You. An instrumental version of Stardust, a favourite, apparently, of altoist Jill Brett, was given a different treatment by the band in that it was taken at a brisker tempo. Do I hear cries of sacrilege? I think I would agree!
Now then, talking of taking things at a lick, Old Man River was just the business. It flew with drummer David Francis in command throughout - great stuff. Witchcraft demonstrated the band's excellent ensemble playing with Jill Brett featured. The inevitable intrusion of all things festive into the world of big band jazz closed out the first set. My Bah Humbug tendencies were about to be exposed but I need not have worried. MD Peter Morgan produced Stan Kenton's arrangement of Twelve Days of Christmas. This was more than alright! This was typical SK, full of strange, colourful voicings. An hour had flown by.
It was time for mince pies, wine and other delights. Interval raffle prizes were numerous and I won one!
Second set highlights were many. Tuxedo Junction featured the brass muting and plunging with Bill Basie Brittain and Roy Freddie Green Willis prominent as tenor man Tom Quillian scorched a bluesy solo. Messrs Brittain and Willis came up trumps again on Jersey Bounce as trumpeter Kevin Eland fired an exhilarating volley into the stratosphere.
Ms.Lambert returned to the stage to sing some Cole Porter. Microphone fixed on stand, Lambert looked a million dollars, the epitome of the big band era singer. Night and Day (what a tune!) and My Heart Belongs to Daddy were a delight, so too, Almost Like Being in Love with singer and band at full tilt.
Big band composers/arrangers were included in the set list - Bill Holman (Bright Eyes), Gordon Goodwin (arr. O Tannenbaum) and the Customs House Big Band's very own Bill Brittain (arr. Let it Snow).
To conclude, two other vocal higlights - Lambert sang Santa Baby (afterwards she asked me if I'd enjoyed it. Ruth - that really is a silly question!!!) and for an encore belted out Alright, Okay,You Win. The latter had me thinking that Lambert duetting with the late, great Joe Williams would have been something else!
Peter Morgan's band has developed into a most accomplished outfit and if there is more to come then big band fans are in for a treat. The next opportunity to catch the band is on Tuesday 1st February at the New Crown Hotel in South Shields. It is an open rehearsal session starting at 8:00 pm. Admission is free and the beers aren't too bad at all. The band's next concert performance is on Thursday 10th March at Blaydon Jazz Club. Check with Bebop Spoken Here nearer the time for details. Russell.

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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