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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).


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



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).



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

Monday, March 28, 2011

Splinter @ The Gateshead International Jazz Festival

The annual Splinter showcase (a Jazz Action initiative) in the Northen Rock Foundation Hall featured four of the region's most accomplished ensembles.
Saxophonics - Graeme Wilson (tenor), Niall Armstrong (baritone), Steve Summers (alto) & Keith Robinson (alto & sporano) - are the north east's answer to the 29th Street Saxophone Quartet. The quartet presented some new material including Niall Armstrong's Mice Heaven written in 14/8 recalling the work of Don Ellis and a Graeme Wilson piece in honour of the 29th Street band. Mike Mower's tune Hiatus was given an outing as was Wilson's Stranded at the Wine Bar. This was an excellent opening set to the afternoon.
The Zoe Gilby Quintet opened with Midnight Bell (a song about the Midnight Bell pub on Euston Road, London, which in turn took its name from Patrick Hamilton's novel of 1929). Charles Mingus' Dry Cleaner From Des Moines with lyrics by Joni Mitchell, Pink Floyd's Money (a duo performance by Gilby and bassist Andy Champion) and Centrepiece were but some of the winning tunes from yet another top-class set by Gilby's band (Mark Williams -guitar, Noel Dennis - trumpet/flugehorn, Richard Brown - drums and Champion).
Tenor saxophonist Claude Werner followed and had it all to do. Double bass player Lawrence Blackadder and guitarist Lloyd Wright provided a solid platform for Werner to cut loose and new recruit, drummer John Hirst, played magnificently from the off. Werner can blow and blow and he did just that. A torrent of ideas poured forth on original numbers including Sitting in the Sun and the ever playful Kids. Werner garners accolades each time he plays a gig and this performance was no different. A number of people in the hall heard the Chilean for the first time and were mucho impressed. Will he ever receive a bad review? Not on this form he won't!
Closing Splinter's afternoon of jazz was Nick Pride and the Pimptones.  This is a class outfit. Snappy tunes, snappy dressers, one of the band's tunes - Midnight Feast of Jazz - got it just about right...a feast sure enough although not quite the witching hour!

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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: I look forward to hearing from you.

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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.