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Bebop Spoken There

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Born This Day
Louis Armstrong and Steve Andrews.

Monday, June 16, 2014

Debra Milne's Summer Latin Jazz @ Hoochie Coochie June 15


Debra Milne (vcl); Steve Summers (saxes/perc); Alan Law (pno); Steve Glendinning (gtr); Paul Grainger (bs); Tim Johnston (dms) + Paola Torres (vcl).
(Review by Lance).
The big screen back of the stage wasn't showing football which perhaps explains why Newcastle's Swiss and Ecuadorian population were absent although the room was not without an international presence of which more later.
I settled in my favourite seat with a glass of London Pride - described in the Hoochie Drinks Manual as A favourite with Jazz Critics! and prepared to enjoy an afternoon of Summer Latin Jazz.
And enjoy it I did - the Gnomes of Zurich will never know what they missed!
Debra had chosen wisely for this expanded ensemble and it would be difficult to field a better side. Maybe it was the World Cup coverage that had infused the feeling but the casual passer by would have sworn that these guys were natives of Brazil as they dealt out the bossa, samba, rumba rhythms etc behind Senorita Milne who looked the part in a multi-coloured, backless frock with an orchid in her hair - olay!
The material was, by and large, not part of Debra's regular set list but, apart from the occasional glitch, you'd never have guessed it. The unison voice, sax and guitar passages on Spain were astounding! Portugul too was represented in the form of one Paolo Torres who sang in Portuguese what translated as This Girl is so Different. Paolo, a long-time north east resident who speaks better English than I do Portuguese, deserved more than one song - look forward to hearing him again sometime.
I don't think I've heard Debra in better voice, the two Steve's scintillated, not surprisingly Alan Law impressed - his presence is not unknown in local Latin circles - whilst Grainger and Johnston (without an e) kept it all together.
Note to Debra - must do this again soon!
Lance. 
Footnote: Reading Elmore Leonard's Killshot as I rode the number 27 I noted one of the characters making reference to "Going downtown to hear Lonnie Liston Smith at the Pontchartrain Hotel." Well folks, if you want to hear Lonnie Liston Smith you needn't travel to Detroit - he's appearing at Hoochie on June 26 and it's only a tenner!

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