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Bebop Spoken There

George Shearing: "Speaking about Johann Sebastian Bach I think he'd be a real jazzer if he were alive today. I mean any man who has two wives, twenty kids, gets kicked out of the church for being too harmonically radical and drinks beer can't be all wrong can he?" - (Crescendo March 1984.)

Archive

Today Thursday December 12

Afternoon

Jazz

Vieux Carré Jazzmen - Holystone, Whitley Road, Holystone NE27 0DA. Tel: 0191 266 6173. 12:00pm. Free.

Note earlier time for this week only!

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Evening

Jazz

Hot Club du Nord - Lubetkin Theatre, East Durham College, Willerby Drive, Peterlee SR8 2RN. Tel: 0191 518 2000. 7:00pm. £10.00. (£5.00. under 18s). 'Jazz at the Lubetkin'.

Gala Big Band - Gala Theatre & Cinema, Millennium Place, Durham DH1 1WA. Tel: 03000 266 600. 7:30pm. £10.00. (£8.00. concs.). ‘Gala Big Band Does Christmas’.

Durham University Big Band - Dunelm House, New Elvet, Durham DH1 3AN. Tel: 0191 334 1777. Free. 7:30pm. ‘Jazzy Christmas’.

Indigo Jazz Voices - The Globe, Railway Street, Newcastle NE4 7AD. 7:30pm. £5.00. (£2.00. student).

Maine Street Jazzmen - Sunniside Social Club, Hollywell Lane, Sunniside, Gateshead NE16 5NJ. Tel: 0191 488 7347. 8:30pm. Free.

Tees Hot Club w. Gus Smith (vocals); Dave Stansfield (tenor sax); Ted Pearce (keys) - Dorman’s Club, Oxford Road, Middlesbrough TS5 5DT. Tel: 01642 823813. 8:30pm. Free.

New Orleans Preservation Jazz Band - Oxbridge, Oxbridge Lane, Stockton on Tees TS18 4AW. 8:30pm. £2.50.

Blues/Soul/Funk/Etc.

?????

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

Friday, June 17, 2011

Review: Tommy Smith - Karma

Tommy Smith (ten/sop/shakuhatchi/synth); Steve Hamilton (pno/synth/tambourine); Kevin Glasgow (elec. bass); Alyn Cosker (dms).
Karma, although central to Buddhism actually predates the arrival of The Buddha and examines the cause of inequality - in personal characteristics as well as wealth and health - among mankind. This I learned from the album notes in case you're thinking I am displaying previously hidden depths!
Karma, the album, follows the beliefs with each track representing differing aspects of Karmic philosophy.
Maybe it does, maybe it doesn't, but what it does represent is compelling contemporary jazz and there is certainly an indo-jazz feel about some of Smith's original compositions. This doesn't prevent him blowing almost to the point of no return (almost!) on tenor yet playing some lyrical soprano that wouldn't have been out of place in a Buddhist temple. Smith refers to this as his "Grunge Band" and there are moments where it has a sweaty cellar club late night groove going for it that merges imperceptably with the more mystical moments. On Star there is even an Irish influence. There are also Arabic and Japanese influences and - surprise - Scottish (McBuddha?)
Alyn Cosker, a long time associate of Smith, lays down the multiple rhythms demanded of him whilst Hamilton's piano and synth work add additional colour. Kevin Glasgow, one of the newer guys, is no slouch on six string bass guitar and is a vital and integral part of the group.
Repeated listenings to this CD have almost converted me to Buddhism!
The band embark on an almost nationwide tour next week beginning on June 24 in Aberdeen. I say 'almost' as, sadly, Newcastle/Gateshead are bypassed. This would have been ideal for The Sage or Gateshead Old Town Hall but instead we will have to make do with the next best thing and grab this superb CD.
Lance.

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