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Bebop Spoken There

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11,740 (and counting) posts since we started blogging just over 12 years ago. 880 of them this year alone and, so far, 17 this month (August 4).

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August

Thursday 6: Vieux Carre Jazzmen - The Holystone, Whitley Road, Holystone, North Tyneside NE27 0DA. Tel: 0191 266 6173. 1:00pm. Free. OUTDOOR gig.

Saturday, April 27, 2013

SNJO "The Incredible Stan Kenton". Queen's Hall, Edinburgh. April 25.


Tommy Smith (pictured). (md/ten), Konrad Wiszniewski (ten), Ruaridh Pattison, Martin Kershaw (alt), Bill Fleming (bar); Ryan Quigley, Cameron Jay, Tom MacNiven, James Marr, Lorne Cowieson (tpts); Chris Grieve, Phil O'Malley, Kevin Garrity, Kieran McLeod, Michael Owers; Steve Hamilton (pno), Calum Gourlay (bs), Alyn Cosker (dms).
(Review by Lance)
If the Scottish National Jazz Orchestra's In The Spirit of Duke is currently a front runner for my CD of the Year then this concert could well be my Gig of the Year!
Kenton had his fans and his detractors over the years and some of his works did seem to be somewhat beyond the pale at the time. However, listening to them in retrospect, even the abstract things like City of Glass are now well within reach. What was never in doubt was that when the Kenton band decided to swing they certainly could generate that elusive quality.
Tonight's performance concentrated very much on that aspect of the Kenton bible and it was right on the money!
Artistry in Percussion (Cosker), Cherokee, featuring the amazing Ruaridh Pattison on alto. Scottish young jazz musician of 2011 Pattison rolled through the changes with the fluency of an Art Pepper or a  Pete King. Bernie's Tune (Gourlay), Interlude (Hamilton), a magnificent Spring is Here by leader Tommy, Mulligan's Swinghouse and a surprise String of Pearls. I misheard the announcement as String of Perils and, upon reflection, it might have been an appropriate title as they took Glenn Miller to places the Major never dreamed existed!
At this point I stopped taking notes as wave after wave of sound engulfed me. Various blasts by Quigley on Intermission Riff and Peanut Vendor. Martin Kershaw and Konrad holding their own on Fascinating Rhythm and I've Got You Under My Skin, Bill Fleming's Rhapsody in Blue, Concerto to end all Concertos. The trombones, the trumpets  - man this was like open day at the distillery!
And there was more - so so much more but space and time precludes it so you'll just have to catch the band tonight (Saturday) at Glasgow or tomorrow at Stirling.
Viva Kenton! Viva SNJO!
Lance.
PS: SNJO Bring In The Spirit of Duke to the Gala Theatre Durham on July 8 - don't miss it.
STOP PRESS! All About Jazz name Tommy Smith as their Jazzman of the Day!

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