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Bebop Spoken There

JD Allen: "...art in itself is now a luxury that you need a lot of finances to do." - (DownBeat October 2021)

The Things They Say!

Hudson Music: Lance's "Bebop Spoken Here" is one of the heaviest and most influential jazz blogs in the UK.

Rupert Burley (Dynamic Agency): "BSH just goes from strength to strength".

'606' Club: "A toast to Lance Liddle of the terrific jazz blog 'Bebop Spoken Here'"

The Strictly Smokin' Big Band included Be Bop Spoken Here (sic) in their 5 Favourite Jazz Blogs.
Ann Braithwaite (Braithwaite & Katz Communications) You’re the BEST! --

Postage

13,822 (and counting) posts since we started blogging 13 years ago. 1239 of them this year alone and, so far, 66 this month (Oct. 18).

From This Moment On ...

October

Wed 20: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.
Wed 20: Darlington Big Band @ Darlington & Simpson Rolling Mills Club, Darlington. 7:00pm. Rehearsal session (open to the public).
Wed 20: Take it to the Bridge @ The Globe, Newcastle. 7:30pm.
Wed 20: Jeremy McMurray & the Jazz Pocket Orchestra @ Middlesbrough Town Hall. 8:00pm.

Thu 21: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ The Holystone, North Tyneside. 1:00pm.
Thu 21: NUJO Jazz Jam @ Bar Loco, Newcastle. 7:00pm. Newcastle University Jazz Orchestra.
Thu 21: Alter Ego @ St James' & St Basil's Church, Newcastle 7:30pm.
Thu 21: Maine Street Jazzmen @ Sunniside Social Club, Gateshead. 8:30pm.
Thu 21: Tees Hot Club @ Dorman's Club, Middlesbrough. 9:00pm.

Fri 22: Mick Shoulder Quartet @ Lit & Phil, Newcastle. 1:00pm. Quartet featuring Alex Clarke (BBC Young Jazz Musician of the Year finalist).
Fri 22: Classic Swing @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.
Fri 22: New Orleans Preservation Jazz Band @ Oxbridge Hotel, Stockton. 1:00pm.
Fri 22: Paul Edis Trio w Ruth Lambert @ St Cuthbert's Centre, Crook. 7:30pm.
Fri 22: Michael Feinstein @ Sage Gateshead. 8:00pm.
Fri 22: Peter Morgan Trio @ Prohibition Bar, Newcastle. 8:00pm.

Sat 23: Mary Coughlan @ Gosforth Civic Theatre, Newcastle. 8:00pm.
Sat 23: Têtes de Pois @ The Globe, Newcastle. 8:00pm.

Sun 24 Vieux Carré Hot 4 @ Spanish City, Whitley Bay. 12 noon.
Sun 24: Musicians Unlimited @ South Durham Social Club, Hartlepool. 1:00pm.
Sun 24: Voices of Virtue Gospel Choir @ The Globe, Newcastle. 4:00pm.
Sun 24: Milne Glendinning Band @ The Globe, Newcastle. 8:00pm.

Mon 25: Jazz in the Afternoon @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.

Tue 26: Classic Swing @ Ship inn, Monkseaton. 1:00pm. The post-lockdown resumption of the band’s weekly residency will be fortnightly until further notice.
Tue 26: Jam session @ Black Swan, Newcastle Arts Centre. 8:00pm. The post-lockdown resumption of the Black Swan’s fortnightly jam session.

Thursday, April 11, 2013

GIJF: Day 1 - Stonephace Stabbins featuring Zoe Rahman.

"Stonephace" Stabbins, (saxes and flute), Zoe Rahman (piano), Pat Illingworth (drums), Crispin"Spry" Robinson (percussion), Karl Rasheed Abel (bass).
(Review by JC.)
Although I like to think I keep in touch with what's happening in music, sometimes a name or a group are mentioned that I have to admit I've never heard of.  Larry "Stonephace" Stabbins was one of these names and the group that was mentioned in connection with him, Working Week, was another. However, in my defence, looking up the internet, it seems they came to prominence in the 1980s when I was in rural seclusion living in a tiny village in deepest Northumberland. So access to music was quite limited and although it was rumoured that there were brilliant Northumbrian pipers, fiddle and harmonica playing shepherds somewhere about, I never heard any of them and the only gig I went to in 8 years was the Ray Stubbs One Man Band in a pub in the next village. However, I would have thought the name 'Stonephace' might have stood out in the cultural ether, as even among the hard biitten characters living in tiny  snow bound cottages in the Northumberland hills, it was not that common a title.
So although I'd never heard of him, the previews on BSH were insistant, saying 'Whatever you do, don't miss Stonephace Stabbins' and as I saw that Zoe Rahman was playing as well that was good enough for me. As it happened circumstances meant that I couldn't get to any of the earlier shows so having a gig that didn't start until 10.30pm was perfect. The gig was in the Northern Rock Hall, which is not my favourite performance space as the ceiling is too high and it's hard to get an intimate atmosphere. But none of that mattered, as from the first couple of notes of Coltrane's Africa, I was hooked. 
The band started on a high and carried on upwards. The music was from their latest album Transcendence and channels the intense emotional feel of Coltrane's spiritual jazz. I knew none of the tunes but that didn't matter, Stabbins and the band were terrific. Zoe Rahman had the piano under her complete control with spiky chords and rippling solos. If my piano teacher had told me, as she tried to get me to practice Greensleeves, that it was okay to give the keyboard an ecstatic forearm smash every so often (as Zoe did) I'd still be playing. The rest of the band were equally great, laying down a consistently innovative groove for the sax and piano to sweep over and featuring individually at numerous points. 
It was a great set of exciting, high energy music which got an attentive response but not quite the lively enthusiasm it absolutely deserved.  Stonephace himself was very affable, telling stories about buying Coltrane's album when he was 13 and getting chucked out of a mainstream band he was playing in at the time because he tried out one of JC's solos, much to the chagrin of the bandleader. I, of course, bought the CD after the gig and it's great, if not quite as exciting as the gig. But then the gig's not on every night.
I may not have known about Stonephace Stabbins last week - but I do now!
Addendum - the Raquel Welch phenomenon
Checking out Stonephace Stabbins web site when I got home, I was delighted to find that there was a great video of the Africa track, with excellent sound and quite psychedelic visuals. However, although not wanting to sound like a movie 'anorak' as in 'Why is Raquel Welch wearing a watch with her sabre-toothed tiger bikini in that scene from 3000 years BC', I couldn't help noticing that Zoe seems to change her top at least once, if not twice, over the course of the track and that at some points, when she seems to be playing Tyner like chords on the piano, there are rippling runs coming over the sound track. Maybe that's transcendence for you.
JC

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