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Bebop Spoken There

Randy Brecker: "It's still a thrill for me today to stand out front of a big band as the soloist and hear all that sound going on behind you. It brings the best out of me" - (DownBeat June 2019).

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2019 Parliamentary Jazz Awards

The voting is open between now and May 31 to enable site visitors to nominate their choices in the various categories of this year's APPJAG awards which can be done here.
BSH was very proud to be nominated and to win the 2018 Media Award and hope we can have your support again this year.

Today Monday May 20

Afternoon

Jazz

Jazz in the Afternoon - Cullercoats Crescent Club, 1 Hudleston, Cullercoats NE30 4QS. Tel: 0191 253 0242. 1:00pm. Free.

Evening

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

Tuesday, December 02, 2014

CD Review: Fini Bearman - Porgy and Bess.

Fini Bearman – voice, Matt Calvert – guitars, Ross Stanley – organ, piano, Wurlitzer, Jon Cox – bass, John Blease – drums, percussion.
(Review by Debra M.)
Fini Bearman’s second album Porgy and Bess is a reimagining of the Gershwin & DuBose Heyward opera ‘through the prism of the classic Miles Davis/Gil Evans’ album’, but clearly has many other influences too. She and her collaborators have interpreted the music quite differently to their predecessors, whilst maintaining the strength of the narrative.
Gone, Gone, Gone opens with a funereal drum roll, which transforms into a rocking lament for the deceased Robbins, with a passionate vocal from Bearman. The sombre mood continues with the reflective and despairing My Man’s Gone Now, a slow waltz with a country feel, inspired by Robert Plant’s & Allison Krautz’s Rising Sands.
There is light relief and a complete change in style with I Got Plenty of Nuttin’, which is given a swinging Rockabilly treatment, and features a fluid organ solo by Ross Stanley, rounded off  with relaxed vocal improvisation and a cracking drum groove to finish. In contrast, Bearman’s delicate, direct delivery of Porgy I’m Your Woman Now is beautifully supported by Matt Calvert’s plucked guitar.
It Ain’t Necessarily So is a Hendrix inspired bluesy rock number, well delivered, but possibly not the ideal treatment for such a light and witty lyric.  However, the mood is just right in I Loves You Porgy, with atmospheric guitar and cymbals augmenting an initially tentative and then heartfelt vocal.  The story draws to a close with There’s A Boat That’s Leaving, which is laid back & groovy, and has a powerful soul infused vocal , and an uncharacteristically  straight ahead jazz guitar solo from Matt Calvert. The relaxed vibe & potential to swing is tempered by the drummer Blease’s on the beat emphasis, possibly a deliberate echo of the sombre backdrop in earlier tracks. 
The album ends with the freely improvised Prayer (Summertime), bearing no resemblance to Gershwin’s overused classic; it has an ethereal, quiet beginning, which the ensemble develops and expands in support of the liberating, wordless vocal climax.  Apparently, there was some debate as to whether to include this track, but their contemporary approach impressively evokes the themes of oppression and loss, love and hope, a demonstration of how this work has inspired generations of musicians.
Debra M.

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