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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, October 01, 2012

Scarborough Jazz festival September 29 - Afternoon

The Give a Little Love Jazz Orchestra 
Paul Baxter (bs/cond); Russ Henderson (alt/sop); Tom Harrison (alt/fl); John McKillip, Stuart MacDonald (ten); James Lancaster, Mark Chandler, Si Nixon, Damien Bell (tpts); Chris Hibbard, Matt Ball, Lee Hallam, Dave Pearce (tmbs.); Paul Smith (dms); Zezo Olimpio (pno); Jamie Taylor (gtr) + guest Alan Barnes (alt).
(Review by Lance.)
Billed as "A Tribute to Horace Silver" this was a rousing big band set that, whilst the relationship to Silver's music may at times have been tenuous - I must confess I'm not familiar with the pianist's work in big band settings so perhaps it wasn't tenuous! However, what it was was a good contemporary big band blowing on Silver tunes and Silver inspired tunes written by leader and bassist Paul Baxter.
The band contained a host of soloists, including the leader, who in the main were given plenty exposure. Alan Barnes sat in on Juicy Lucy. This was interesting as Tom Harrison soloed with Barnesy standing next to him - no pressure!
Indeed Barnes' solo followed immediately on as if to say "I'm the boss"!
It wasn't that straightforward - when the two altos locked horns Harrison acquitted himself admirably.
Too many great moments to single out although Stuart MacDonald played some fine solos - indeed they all did. Incidentally drummer Paul Smith is not the Paul Smith we know and love on Tyneside and Teesside. Nevertheless, a fine drummer worthy of the name!
Lance.
Jim Birkett Trio (As previous with the above Paul Smith on drums)
A quick pop through to the Jazz Lounge to catch Jim and the boys playing Gone With The Wind. Pleased to say that Jim wasn't daunted by having to follow on from Martin Taylor last night.
Matt Wates Sextet.
Matt Wates (alt/stand-up); Steve Main (ten); Martin Shaw (tpt); Leon Greening (pno); Malcolm Creese (bs); Matt Home (dms).
(Photo courtesy of Bill Shakespeare.)
A program of originals by leader Wates who not only blows brilliant alto but tells awful jokes eg: Rupert Bear working on a building site complains somebody's stolen his pick-axe. Foreman says "Yes, today's the day the teddy bears get their pick nicked."
His alto playing, which included an unaccompanied cadenza based on Paganini's Caprice Number 2, made up for the jokes. Tenor player Main also blew good sax without telling jokes and Martin Shaw delivered what we expect him to deliver - cool, lyrical flugel horn and fiery modern trumpet.
Talking about fire - pianist Greening plays with so much passion it's a wonder the Bosendorfer grand didn't burst into flames! His piano playing - one of the festival highlights.
Lance.
Jay Phelps Quartet.
Jay Phelps (tpt); Ross Stanley (pno); Tim Thornton (bs); Moses Boyd (dms).
This was one of the emotional moments - Jay Phelps given the unenviable honour of paying tribute to the late Abram Wilson who was booked to appear but, sadly, died early this year at the age of 38.
Just a Closer Walk With He (sic) was played with feeling and dedication - not an inwardly dry eye in the house.
Phelps played several of his own compositions including Jaywalk which included an outrageous quote from the Toreador Song which, surprisingly went almost unnoticed making me wonder if the age of the quote and the knowing smiled from the audience has passed!
A moving version of Midnight Sun was followed by more Horace Silver and St. Vitus Dance which brought the afternoon to a close. 
A splendid afternoon with Saturday night and Sunday to follow.
More shortly...
Lance

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