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

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Jazz in the Afternoon @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. April 21

Brian Chester (keyboards, trombone, silly hat), Derek Fleck (clarinet, tenor saxophone, silly hat), John Carstairs Hallam (double bass) & Ollie Rillands (drums & vocals) + Lawrence McBriarty (trombone), Barry Soulsby (clarinet & vocals), Miles Watson (trumpet,) Roy Gibson (keyboards), Doris Fenn (banjo), John Broddle (vocals), Theresa Armstrong (vocals) & Lisa Murphy (vocals)
(Review by Russell).
Easter Monday, sunshine, Metro to the coast packed (buckets and spades, screaming tots, tattoos, harmless pit-bulls). A nice day to sit on the prom and watch the disembarked disport themselves. To more pressing matters…an afternoon of jazz in the Crescent Club. The club, like the train, packed, standing room only.
The regulars – band and audience – assembled in good time, the beers on the bar the best selection by far to be found in a north east CIU club. Consett Brewery’s Last Tap the first to be sampled as John Broddle sang Easter Parade (topical, if nothing else). Wrap Your Troubles in Dreams suggested Broddle, backed by Brian Chester (piano, DIY multi coloured mini umbrella hat) and Derek Fleck (tenor, distressed straw hat). Chester’s verdict on JB’s efforts an encouraging ‘absolutely average’. Drummer Ollie Rillands met a (regular) request speeding along Route 66. Lawrence McBriarty (trombone) brought a little respectability to proceedings on Jazz Me Blues and Nagasaki.
The Monday session welcomes sitters-in and a new name got up to sing a couple of numbers including Autumn Leaves. The name to note is Lisa Murphy. Several generations younger than the boys in the band, Ms Murphy should sit in elsewhere (the Jazz Café’s jam session, perhaps), a voice to be heard again.
The interval – another beer (the Maxim Brewery’s Wanted Simcoe Kid), a natter, a raffle ticket. One lucky (unlucky?) person got to choose between a bottle of wine and a CD. Derek Fleck implored the winner to ‘take the Glenn Miller thing away’! Fleck picked up his tenor, assumed his Lester Young stance (slumped along the leather upholstered seating) and accompanied the eternally youthful Theresa Armstrong on Mean to Me
Things were hotting up. Roy Gibson sat at the piano, Miles Watson (trumpet) got up and Mr Chester played trombone alongside Mr McBriarty. The estimable Doris Fenn (banjo) joined the engine room boys (Rillands and double bassist John Carstairs Hallam) as a marmalade of clarinets (Fleck and Barry Soulsby) upped the ante. The Loch Ness Brewery’s Wilderness called out to be supped as a jam session threatened. Time waits for no jam session, time to go, there’s always next week.         
Russell.        

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