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Bebop Spoken There

Danny Gatton: "I was tired of playing in beer joints. I wanted to do something tangible like building cars. But once you do music it gets into your blood. You can get away from it for awhile but sooner or later it comes back to you." - (Down Beat April 1991).

Tal Farlow: "There were times when I would stop [playing guitar] and do sign painting." - (Downbeat December 5, 1963)

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Today Wednesday August 23

Afternoon
Vieux Carre Jazzmen - Crescent Club, 1 Hudleston, Cullercoats NE30 3OS. 1pm. Free.
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Evening.
New Orleans Jazz at the Village Hall - Springwell Village Community Venue, Fell Rd., Gateshead NE9 7RP. 8:15pm. £3.
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Take it to the Bridge - The Globe, 11 Railway St., Newcastle NE4 7AD. £1. 8pm.
Billy's Acoustic Blues - Billy Bootleggers, 28 Nelson St., Newcastle NE1 5AN. 9pm. Free (weekly).
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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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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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