Total Pageviews

Bebop Spoken There

Brian Harvey: "The exciting day arrived and we [as under age school boys] snuck into the [pub's] rehearsal room, sat awkwardly to attention on hard chairs in a row facing the band and heard our first - very loud - live jazz. What an occasion that was - we even drank beer because we understood that's what jazz people did and that's what the band were drinking." - (Just Jazz June 2020)

Dave Rempis:Ten years from now, I can see musicians streaming concerts in real time and charging a minimal amount for people to watch.” - (DownBeat September 2013)

Archive.

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".

Today

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.

Saturday, September 28, 2013

The Customs House Big Band @ St. Cuthbert’s Parish Centre, Crook. Friday Sept. 27

Bill Watson, Michael Lamb, Ken DeVere, Gordon Marshall: (trumpets); Gareth Weaver, Chris Kurgi-Smith, Michael Fletcher, Peter Morgan: (trombones);  Jill Brett, Kim Webb, (alto);  Alan Marshall, Peter Hepplewhite (tenor); Chris Kaberry(baritone); Bill Brittain (piano); Alan Smith (bass guitar); Barry Black (drums); Roy Willis (guitar)..
(Review and photo by Jerry)
7.15, and almost dark; under the open-beamed roof, candles glimmer beside simple floral displays and bowls of nibbles on each red-clothed table. The bar is well stocked with bottled ales and the band is doing a quick sound-check - a hint of what is to come. We are at Crook – my favourite venue bar none!

At 7.30 sharp we were drummed into Love for Sale which featured alto, trumpet and tenor – the first of many excellent solos this evening – and a big, big finish. Indiana was introduced as a “little thing”, but there was really nothing “little” about the sound from this 17-piece band!
We were urged to dance, if we felt like it, and buy the soloists drinks! Next, aptly, was Straight No Chaser! For Sunny Side of the Street Peter Morgan suggested that we sing (Ruth Lambert was absent, ill) and we did, rather shyly at first, but feeling “rich as Rockefeller” nonetheless.
Next was “Not the Stan Kenton Band (but we would like to be)” - trombones to the fore, on But Beautiful: full-throttle crescendos, alto sax solo, hints of foghorn baritone and a high trumpet finish (Ooops! I’m sounding like a wine-buff!) No dancers yet but the Latin rhythms of Storm Zone were clearly getting to the guy who samba-ed to the bar ahead of me, and during The Way You Look Tonight, TWO couples were up and dancing!
Why Musicians Can’t Dance (THREE couples now could) was given the lie, by Peter Morgan, some of whose moves while conducting had me expecting a moonwalk at any moment! A nice guitar solo on this one, too.
April in Paris closed the set with audience-participation (“One more time” we chanted)! So now he had us singing, dancing and chanting: if there’s any snow to be sold to the Inuit, here’s your man for the job!
The interval passed with pizza slices and raffle then back to the music!
Specifically, the music of Gordon Goodwin: the brilliant, cartoon inspired Hunting Wabbits. Its manic staccato opening, all honking brass and clashing cymbals, had the dancers back in action straight away and the melodic middle section featured more fine solos including soprano sax and piano before the drums announced a return to madness. The dancers needed to steer well clear of Mr Morgan’s windmill arms as he wound the band up to a frenetic finale! Goodwin also provided the set-closer, Sing Sang Sung – an “interesting” (understatement!) take on Sing Sing Sing heard on Monday at The Cherry Tree. There the audience had been vocal, here they were rowdily festive, dancing, clapping and hollering (someone near me was doing a passable impersonation of a tawny owl)!
In between these gems – all good, but I need to be brief – we had: Stardust (and an explanation of the name “Hoagy”); Groovin’ High (which lived up to its name); Moonlight in Vermont; Sister Sadie (bop bop bop-baa) and C Jam Blues with at least 10 solos to illustrate “What jazz bands are all about” (Peter Morgan’s words, not mine). Great stuff: this is a band to follow, if not to the ends of the earth, at least to Crook or South Shields or anywhere else you can catch them! Did anyone buy a drink for the soloists, I wonder?

Thanks to all at St. Cuthbert’s for an excellent night: next  gig is Djangologie, keep an eye on the listings for that. We’ll be there. – Jerry.

No comments :

Blog Archive