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

Friday, July 19, 2013

Vintage Tea Dance With Jazz Bands : 150 Years of the Co-operative Society The Great Hall, Discovery Museum, Newcastle; July 17

The Blue Jazz Quintet: Chris Finch (keys); Karen Rann, Jeff Smith (saxes); Dave Parker (double bass); Michael Howard (drums)
Strictly Smokin’ Big Band with Lindsay Hannon and James Hedley (vocals)
Sorry, don’t know the big band names except for Chris Finch (keys, again!) and Paul Gowland (sax)
(Review by Ann Alex)
This was a wonderfully enjoyable do involving a celebration of the co-op, great value for your £5 ticket, with the money going towards this years’ co-op charity, a carers’ organisation. And the music to enhance the occasion was jazz, supplied as above. Jazz musicians sure do get around! The Great Hall itself is a joy to see, finely decorated in an Art Deco or maybe Art Nouveau style – sorry I’m no interior design expert. About 200 people gathered, many of them being ladies from co-op committees or ex-employees, and Tyne Tees Television were present doing interviews. Apparently the hall used to be part of the co-op warehouse in former days, and there was a stall with items from the co-op archives.
The event began at 4pm with a wine reception, then high tea of sandwiches and delicious cakes was served at 5pm. Meanwhile the BJQ struck up with a whole schedule of well known jazz tunes, beginning with Fly Me To The Moon; A Foggy Day In London Town; All Of Me; Girl From Ipanema; My Funny Valentine; Summertime (note to Lance, thankfully not sung!) Don’t think I heard Tea For Two, but I may have missed it when I was drinking mine.
Strictly Smokin’ Big Band brought out the dancers in force, quicksteps especially, entertaining to watch such skilled footwork. Lindsay certainly knows how to dress for the occasion, and today it was a figure-hugging dress with a dark-coloured front panel, 1950’s style quaffed hair and elegant shoes, a stunning look. Straighten Up And Fly Right started off the songs, followed by Orange Coloured Sky; How High The Moon; A Tisket A Tasket (with the men of the band joining in); Too Darn Hot (and it was!). James Hedley treated us to Nice Work If You Can Get It; Wonderwall; Almost Like Being In Love. The band did some numbers such as Favourite Things; Bye Bye Blackbird; Have You Met Miss Jones; Do Nothing Till You Hear From Me. And all this was interspersed with a raffle with generous prizes such as weekends away, but I didn’t win, shame.
All this was an excellent example of jazz contributing well to a social occasion, jazz in a wider context. Anyone fancy doing a dissertation on this subject? I bet it’s already been done.
Ann Alex

2 comments :

Unknown said...

Thanks Ann. If anyone is interested the big band were:

Steve Summers, Nadiah Killick, Paul Gowland, Jamie Toms and Niall Armstrong on Saxes.

Gordon Marshall, Michael Lamb, Pete Tanton and Thomas Hill on Trumpets.

Mark Ferris, Alex Leathard, Robert Perry and Mr John Flood on 'bones.

Chris Finch, Pawel Jedrzejewski, Michael Went and Guy Swinton in the Rhythm Section.

Vox from Lindsay Hannon and James Hedley.

Anonymous said...

Thanks Michael, so you were on trumpet, and I've since met Steve Summers during the jam at the Star on Wednesday.
Ann Alex

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