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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.

Friday, February 17, 2012

Bebside Big Band @ St.Nicholas Church Hall, Gosforth. February 16th

Peter Morgan (M.D/tmb); Peter Hepplewhite, Sandra Wilkinson, Ian Smith, Amber Reeve, Allan Jones (Saxes); Ken DeVere, Dave Parnaby, Steve Hackett, Dougie Armstrong, Miles Watson (tpts); Tony Beard, Bobby Percy, Robin Nixon, (tmb); Joe McMullen (pno); John Duncan (bs); John Vine (dms).
Sammy Nestico’s Basie - Straight Ahead  (pure Basie),  Fantasy for Saxophones (comp. Lennie Niehaus) was pure Kenton, followed by Sonny Rollin’s Doxy (featuring the Blyth based Big Band’s saxophone section) augured well for another first rate session of big band jazz. Ah, but wait…the dance band sounds of the thirties onwards were soon to take centre stage. The audience (‘senior citizens’ in the main) soon took to the floor. Peter Morgan, the band’s affable MD, encouraged one and all to trip the light (not so) fantastic. One couple – the star turn Terpsichoreans on the night – led the way and others followed. Cha Cha Cha, foxtrot, rumba, tango, waltz – you name it we got it. Ol’ Man River and Moon River (excellent ensemble work) were but two of many tunes rattled-off by the Bebside Big Band as the dance floor remained busy. 
The church hall, resembling a Nissen hut, was a hive of activity during the interval as there was a mass breakout into another Nissen hut where there was a lavish buffet laid on for free. As the saying goes…’Owt for nowt and tuppence change’ so all tucked in. Beer and wine were snapped up at give-away prices and in no time the second set was upon us. 
Hay Burner and an excellent arrangement of Alfie augured well…ah, but wait…this was a dance band night. The Gay Gordons – I know, hard to believe – had them rocking, well, creaking. One old chap, past his bed time, bade farewell, walking stick raised head high as he exited the hall. The jazzers latched onto How High the Moon as the rhythm section swung it. New York New York sounded good too. MD Morgan thanked the audience for entertaining the band throughout with their loud conversation and the packed hall went home happy with one Last Waltz.
Russell.         

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