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Bebop Spoken There

Art Hirahara: "Playing with people is the most important thing to me, and not playing with people is torture." - (DownBeat August, 2020)

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11,772 (and counting) posts since we started blogging 12 years ago. 912 of them this year alone and, so far, 49 this month (August 13).

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August

Thursday 20: Vieux Carre Jazzmen - The Holystone, Whitley Road, Holystone, North Tyneside NE27 0DA. Tel: 0191 266 6173. 1:00pm. Free. OUTDOOR gig.

Monday, February 07, 2011

NEJC & Friends Beerdorado Tour - Saturday 5th Feb

Andy Champion (twin-bell trumpet) ; Matty Bell (band leader) ; Graham 'Deano' Patrick (5-chord guitar) ; Pete Bradshaw (limitless chord guitar) ; Richard Brown (various finger glasses) ; Adrian Tilbrook (shutter percussion) ; Mark Williams (pyrotechnic schplinger) ; Scott - 'Geordie Dad' - Gilby (rusty lager can) ; Michael Gilby (vocals) ; Robert Laing (sting bass) ; Mick Champion (jumbo fret bass) ; David 'Met' Maroniuk (vocals) ; George Milburn (pre-tensioned bows) ; Noel Dennis (flugelhorn). Andy Champion's best man Matty Bell should be congratulated for putting together this fantastic tour at such short notice - Beerdorados waiting for a train! This Saturday, 14 of the region's top musicians and vocalists played to packed houses in:Leeds, Dewsbury, Huddersfield, Stalybridge and York.
With a completely unrehearsed playlist, pulled out of the hat only by the constant attention of prestidigitator and bandleader Matty, this was so-called free improv jazz at its best.
With his early doors solo on the train to Leeds, Mark was already in fine form with his own composition, Where's the Beer Trolley?! with bursts of breathy brilliance into an empty Strongbow can - Schpling!!!! (for chord anoraks, that's the famous James Bond theme chord.) Taking up the can theme, like the sympathetic improviser that he is, Scott Gilby took the lead as his track, Geordie Dad, swayed off down the carriage aisle with that poignant lyric, "Y'aalreet pet!" getting the most out of a six-pack of rusty McEwan's Export cans - nice! Then, with brother Michael's cool rendering of He ain't Heavy, but He's Not MY Brother Either! the audience was already getting suitably agitated! Bass (not draught) backing from Robert Laing left us all amazed as his Sting Intro burst away from any constrictive mention of dots or staves - completely fretless in the Oddfellows Arms.
As the band reformed in a Leeds bar, it was an opportunity for the North Yorks contingent to blow their vapours into the ethereal fug. Graham/Deano set off with such an imaginative cocktail of chordal brilliance based on his now famous '5-chord' Method soon joined by Pete Bradshaw with the best deconstructed version of Pinball Wizard ever heard, also thanks to his very own 7sus4 Insistence - brilliant! Adrian's percussive Shutter Release was so subtly executed that he's already planning his own imminent lighter CAM'RA tour! Richard Brown's distinctive fingering (see photo) on half-full straight glass was the finest cameo roll on any drums I ever heard before. After Andy's brother's inspired bass solo on his Jumbo Frets, nobody was in any doubt of that strong family music gene - although Mick did seem to cast doubt on common fatherhood - read into that what you like! Meanwhile Dave Maronuik startled us all with his cool rendering of Bless Their Cotton Socks - Little Tinkers! and got us in the mood for the next stage - "You should all be on it!" they cried, and cried, and cried!! Ending up in York for an improv banquet fit for a lop, Andy led the band with his Da Vinci's Last Supper like a true messiah, reaching for various pre-tensioned bows from yours truly's bottomless quiver - or was it quivering bottom - we'll never know! That reminds me however of a Samurai Sword Tail , which is not a fish! Sadly Noel Dennis couldn't make it to this gig - lucky bugger! There's a saying in free-improv circles that nobody dares utter, in fear of being called repetitious/pretentious/predictable* (delete as appropriate) - I'll whisper it to you later! An 11 hour performance that beggars description - a prenuptial so restrained and yet charged with that Van der Graaf generational static which could spark anytime! We all wish that Z-A will find their continually blooming way in North Shields on Thursday.
Photos. George M

1 comment :

Lance said...

Thanks for that succinct report George - Hello and OK will be livid that we scooped them!

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