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Bebop Spoken There

Piers Paul Read: "Bruce Reynolds and Biggs shared an interest in Sex, Jazz and Hemingway." - (The Train Robbers by Piers Paul Read, Coronet Books 1979.)

George Shearing: "Speaking about Johann Sebastian Bach I think he'd be a real jazzer if he were alive today. I mean any man who has two wives, twenty kids, gets kicked out of the church for being too harmonically radical and drinks beer can't be all wrong can he?" - (Crescendo March 1984.)

Submissions for review

Whilst we appreciate the many emails, texts, messages and other communications we receive requesting album/gig reviews on BSH, regrettably, we are unable to reply to all of them other than those we are able to answer with a positive response.
Similarly, CDs received by post will only be considered if accompanied by sufficient background material.
Finally, bear in mind that this is a jazz-based site when submitting your album.
Lance

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If you experience any problems posting a comment, as I understand some readers are, then email it to me direct, stating which post your comment relates to - lanceliddle@gmail.com. Alternatively, try the Anonymous button but please sign your name!
Apologies for any inconvenience, this is due to circumstances beyond my control.

Today Wednesday July 18

Afternoon

Vieux Carré Jazzmen - Cullercoats Crescent Club, 1 Hudleston, Cullercoats NE30 4QS. Tel: 0191 253 0242. 1:00pm. Free admission.

Evening

Take it to the Bridge - The Globe, 11 Railway Street, Newcastle NE4 7AD. 8:00pm. £1.00.

Gala Big Band: BRASS for Sir Bobby - Durham Miners’ Hall, Flass Street, Durham DH1 4BE. 7:30pm. £10 Durham Brass Festival.

Reel Brass + Shake ‘Em Up Jazz Band - Front Street, Chester le Street, Co. Durham DH3. 6:00-9:00pm. Free. Town centre street performance. Durham Brass Festival (Street Ceilidh).

Steve Glendinning & Paul Grainger - Dun Cow, Brandling Village, Jesmond, Newcastle NE2 4RS. 8pm. Free.

Big BRASS Bash - Timothy Hackworth Park, Shildon. 6:00-9:00pm. Free. Durham Brass Festival.

Northern Monkey Brass Band - Timothy Hackworth Park, Central Parade, Shildon DL4 1DL. 6:00-9:00pm. Free. Big BRASS Bash (Durham Brass Festival).

Community Hall New Orleans Band - Springwell Village Community Venue, Fell Road, Springwell, Gateshead NE9 7RP. 8:15pm £3.00.

Moonshine Sessions - Billy Bootleggers, 28 Nelson Street, Newcastle NE1 5AN. 8:30pm. Free.

Tyne Valley Junior Jazz Ensemble + Tyne Valley Youth Big Band + Tyne Valley Big Band - Phoenix Club & Bar, Chisholm Place, Hexham NE46 1QL. 6:00pm. Donations.

To the best of our knowledge, details of the above events are correct but may be subject to alteration.

Sunday, July 27, 2014

CD (s) Review: Nina Simone - Original Album Series.

The Amazing Nina Simone  (1959); Nina Simone at Town Hall (1959); Forbidden Fruit (1960); Nina Simone Sings Ellington (1962); Folksy Nina (1964).
(Review by Debra M.)
This 5 CD collection  is a re-issue of Nina Simone’s early recordings with her first big label Colpix Records, which followed her debut LP ‘Little Boy Blue’ with Bethlehem Records.  Her impact had been such that, unusually, Colpix  gave her complete creative control.
The first album, issued in 1959 and recorded at the age of 26 with many years of performing behind her, is The Amazing Nina Simone, arranged & conducted by Bob Mersey. The range of material reflects her diverse musical influences and includes jazz standards, folk tunes and gospel.  The opening ballad Blue Prelude is a compelling  reminder of the  unique timbre of Nina Simone’s voice. Her delivery  is melancholy and haunting, and this expressive, subtle style provides another highlight  in  It Might As Well Be Spring.
Nina Simone at Town Hall was recorded on September 12 of the same year, and captures Simone’s  trio on top form.  They are relaxed & swinging  in Exactly Like You,  restrained in The Other Woman, maximising  its  lyrical impact, and provide great dynamics in Billie  Holliday’s Fine and Mellow. But the outstanding track is the exquisite  Wild Is the Wind, sung so tenderly, and accompanied by delicate wind-like  flurries  from Simone at the piano.
Despite the tempting   title, the third album in the series, Forbidden Fruit, is more  pedestrian , with the exception of  the upbeat, raunchier style of  I Love to Love and  Work Song, and a heartfelt rendition of Memphis in June. The final and eponymous track feels slightly out of place, although Simone always retained  church derived songs in her repertoire, and the  band  clearly had some fun with  this take of Adam & Eve  eating that apple.
Nina Simone Sings Ellington,  released in 1962, includes a selection of well known and more obscure songs from the great composer.  The arrangements, featuring orchestra with horns, strings, and a host of closely harmonied backing singers, are of its time, and  restrict the opportunities for  improvisation , although in the only instrumental track,  Satin Doll,   Simone’s distinctive  piano  style is evident. The exception is Hey Buddy Bolden , a tribute to the New Orleans cornetist  & one of the founders of jazz, in which Simone gives  a passionate, hollering  rendition  accompanied almost exclusively by her piano.
The final album  is Folksy Nina,  a collection of live  recordings of old  English ,  Israeli, Low Country & American blues and traditional tunes. This provides some unexpected treats, in particular the percussion from Montego Joe on Eretz  Zavat Chalav and Vanetihu,  and a stripped down  interpretation of  the old English folk tune The Twelfth of Never, with piano and bowed bass, which is leagues ahead of the schmaltzy Donny Osmond version. The album ends sweetly with two children’s songs You Can Sing A Rainbow, and Hush Little Baby, with Simone’s vocal backed by delicate interchanges of guitar and piano, lullabies of the highest calibre.
The  Nina Simone Original Album Series provides 5 quite different albums that  give  a great overview of her unique voice and musicianship, as well as  her diverse  musical interests. Highly recommended for established fans, as well  as for less  familiar listeners, seeking to discover  Simone’s early eclectic repertoire. 
It is scheduled for release by Warner on August 25.
Debra M.

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Bebop Spoken Here -- Here, being the north-east of England -- centred in the blues heartland of Newcastle and reaching down to the Tees Delta and looking upwards to the Land of the Kilt.
Not a very original title, I know; not even an accurate one as my taste, whilst centred around the music of Bird and Diz, extends in many directions and I listen to everything from King Oliver to Chick Corea and beyond. Not forgetting the Great American Songbook the contents of which has provided the inspiration for much great jazz and quality popular singing for round about a century.
The idea of this blog is for you to share your thoughts and pass on your comments on discs, gigs, jazz - music in general. If you've been to a gig/concert or heard a CD that knocked you sideways please share your views with us. Tell us about your favourites, your memories, your dislikes.
Lance (Who wishes it to be known that he is not responsible for postings other than his own and that he's not always responsible for them.)
Contact: lanceliddle@gmail.com I look forward to hearing from you.

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