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Bebop Spoken There

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Wednesday, March 07, 2012

Book Review - Peter King: Flying High - A Jazz Life and Beyond.

One of the events at GIJF that is most eagerly anticipated is the appearance by the Peter King Quartet. Peter King is, one of this countries greatest alto players - many people would say The Greatest - and who could argue? I have so many memories of hearing him
First time down at The Guildhall on Newcastle's Quayside with the Ed Faultless Trio. I was impressed then by his alto playing, a respect that grew some years later when I heard him with Red Rodney at the Corner House.
Flying High is an autobiography that charts his progress from blowing bebop to writing an opera. And, like his alto playing American contemporaries Art Pepper and Charlie Parker, it describes the pitfalls of following their lifestyles. But he survived - emerging with his musical skills intact
The book is also a wonderful look at the British modern jazz scene from the 1960's onwards - Tubbs, Ronnie, Seaman and all the usual suspects are there. I bought it on a visit to London and read it from cover to cover on the train home.
Buy the book, go to the concert - you will regret neither!
Lance.
Peter King: Flying High - A Jazz Life and Beyond. (Northway Publications). (Can currently be picked up on Amazon for £13.90.)
Peter King Quartet - Gateshead International Jazz Festival - The Sage, Friday March 23. 8:00pm.

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