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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)

Dave Rempis:Ten years from now, I can see musicians streaming concerts in real time and charging a minimal amount for people to watch.” - (DownBeat September 2013)

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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, December 12, 2011

ASHINGTON JAZZ CLUB CHRITMAS PARTY NIGHT AT THE ELEPHANT.

Guest Group – Gypsy Jazz with Keith Stephen and Roly Veitch (Guitars); Bruce Rollo (Bass); Caroline Irwin (Vocals) 
Christmas came early at the AJC on Wednesday, December  7th.,  for as we drove up to the Elephant Pub I could have sworn that a star shone brightly down upon the impressive dome of the Jazz Temple known to us affectionately as The Elephant.  It was obvious immediately that a good crowd of fans and friends had made the effort to travel from far away to be there on this special evening. They had all come to witness the arrival on stage of the three wise musicians of Gypsy Jazz supporting the Newbiggin singing Angel bringing  beautiful Jazz ballads to our celebration. We would not be disappointed for a programme of twenty one melodies were performed during this exceptional evening. 
Since the group was formed the quality has improved as the members have understanding of each others professional abilities producing a delightful sound with exquisite taste which blend together like Christmas Pudding and rum sauce. Keith and Roly exchange rhythm sections and solo improvisations like the gear box of a Formula 1 performance car.  Bruce on Bass is incredible at times giving the impression of two instruments bass and drums. How does he achieve that wonderful combination? The repertoire has been extended with the developing arrangements of the guitars and this was elegantly seen throughout the comprehensive programme. 
It must be very satisfying for Caroline to be working so well out front and she too is developing in stage presence with a voice maturing with each performance. She enjoys singing before an appreciative audience and is an accomplished performer for one so young. Her confidence grows and her rapport with her audience is excellent. Singing on more than half the numbers Caroline introduced a taste of seasonal lyrics with Winter Wonderland and Santa Baby, Cuckoo (in French) and a very pacey Happy as the day is long. I don’t know anyone who can sing as quick without stumbling. 
There were other numbers more romantic and smooth included throughout the evening.  Roly sings well and gave us All of Me and Honeysuckle Rose and also made time for his own composition Calypso Jim. Keith and he offered a superb interpretation of Stardust – brilliant. There was almost too many to list here but we got more than our monies worth. One item which must not be forgotten was Caroline’s recitation of an instant poem composed by herself earlier in the evening. So now you know this versatile lady is also a poet and not many people know it. 
 As the happy audience left the building Caroline was overheard saying to Keith, “I told you the room would be full this Christmas evening. We should have gone to the Holiday Inn.”  (not true)
But as I left the Elephant and looked up into the Heavens the bright star had definitely moved South in the direction of Blaydon or maybe Low Fell. That does not need an explanation for Jazz Fans.
Finally on behalf of Ashington Jazz Club may I thank all those who have supported throughout 2011 and a big thank you to John Taylor for making this possible. Thanks to Lance Liddle for posting the reviews and pics and to Elephant management for the encouragement. The Club owes much to all musicians and band groups who have willing performed for us and made our lives the better for the music they create.  May you all have a wonderful Christmas wherever you are and may 2012 bring everything you could wish for yourselves and families.
REMINDER  The Club will resume in the New Year after a Winter break on the first Wednesday in MARCH 2012. See you there.
Peter S.    

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