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Bebop Spoken There

June Christy: "We used to say that if Stan [Kenton] had wanted to become President, nobody else would have stood a chance. ''- (Jazz FM issue 4, 1990).


Eddie Condon: "Every Kenton record sounds to me as though Stan signed up 300 men for the date and they were all on time." - (Jazz FM issue 4, 1990).



Today Friday October 28

Rendezvous Jazz - Monkseaton Arms, Whitley Bay NE25 8DP. 1pm. Free. 0191 2513928.
Emma Fisk/James Birkett Duo - The Lit & Phil, 23 Westgate Rd., /Newcastle NE1 1SE. 1pm. £4.
Gerry Richardson's Big Idea – Ushaw College, Nr. Durham DH7 9RH. 7:30pm. £7.
Steve Bone - Al Forno, 81 Skinnergate, Darlington. 7:00pm.
Ruth Lambert/Alan Law - Redwood Bar, Vermont Hotel, Castle Garth, Newcastle NE1 1RQ. 6pm Free. 0191 2331010.
Hand to Mouth (Lindsay Hannon/Bradley Johnston) - Jazz Café, 25 Pink Lane, Newcastle NE1 5DW. 9pm. Free.
To the best of our knowledge, details of the above events are correct but may be subject to alteration.

Monday, January 14, 2013

Farewell My Lovely/ The Long Goodbye Part 2.

Crombie was finally sent on his way to sleep The Big Sleep. But what a send off! In his oratory, "Bertie" compared the occasion to a State Funeral and he was right! Diana's procession may have been longer but, it didn't seem that much longer!
The parade left the Jazz Café behind two magnificent black horses pulling the hearse. The band struck up with St. James Infirmary and the cortège headed for St. Thomas' Church by a somewhat devious route.  We brought the traffic to a standstill but I didn't hear one horn tooted in anger. I don't know how many were in the parade but it seemed to stretch almost to the horizon!
Someone suggested that this was an illegal gathering! I'm sure it wasn't but Keith would have loved it if the police had charged in and broke it up!
As we neared the church the band segued into The Saints and march in we did - taking care to avoid some of the horses' by-products.
The church was crowded - even the gallery was full and we lustily sang When The roll is Called up Yonder.
Jess read Tennyson's Crossing The Bar before we once more gave voice to The Day Thou Gavest Lord is Ended. They got than one wrong - it had hardly begun!
Next came an "interlude" from Robert who spoke at length - indeed some might say at great length - about Keith with lots of anecdotes finishing off with a letter from Greg Hicks of the RSC who were frequent visitors to the JC (how appropriate are those initials?)
More hymns, then it was outside where the snow was now falling quite heavily. Was this his parting shot? No, a London Dreadnought bus (Number 14 to Putney) had been laid on to ferry us back down to Pink Lane and the Town Wall pub opposite "The Caff".
The walls were bulging as thirsty mourners clamoured for succour. At the far end Peter Gilligan and his team got the ball rolling. Just like last Sunday across the road the guys and gals got up and jammed and sang and had fun. Circumstances decreed I couldn't stay till the end - the laws of gravity were working against me staying upright but believe you me - just like the Long Goodbye Part 1 this was undoubtedly Gig of the Month maybe even the year!
RIP Keith - your like will never pass this way again.
Sky/Tyne and Wear video clip.
Kaveh Emami Photos.


  1. Beautiful write up Lance, what a day for Keith's passing.

  2. Thank you Val, I was quite proud of this myself - I'm sure Keith would have liked it! However, a prophet is without honour etc... Apart from you of course!


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About this blog - contact details.

Bebop Spoken Here -- Here, being the north-east of England -- centred in the blues heartland of Newcastle and reaching down to the Tees Delta and looking upwards to the Land of the Kilt.
Not a very original title, I know; not even an accurate one as my taste, whilst centred around the music of Bird and Diz, extends in many directions and I listen to everything from King Oliver to Chick Corea and beyond. Not forgetting the Great American Songbook the contents of which has provided the inspiration for much great jazz and quality popular singing for round about a century.
The idea of this blog is for you to share your thoughts and pass on your comments on discs, gigs, jazz - music in general. If you've been to a gig/concert or heard a CD that knocked you sideways please share your views with us. Tell us about your favourites, your memories, your dislikes.
Lance (Who wishes it to be known that he is not responsible for postings other than his own and that he's not always responsible for them.)
Contact: I look forward to hearing from you.