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As we all know there are no live gigs taking place in the immediate future. However, any links to jazz streaming that are deemed suitable - i.e. with a professional approach - will be considered for posting.

Friday, January 30, 2015

Strictly Smokin’ Big Band @ The Millstone. January 29

(Review by Russell)
The Strictly Smokin’ session at the Millstone is fast becoming the ‘must get to’ gig on the local scene, second only to the band’s all too infrequent appearances at Hoochie Coochie. Word of mouth has ensured all seats are taken in advance of the seven o’clock start in the upstairs room of the Haddricks Mill Road hostelry. Arrive early to bag a seat.
One or two deps (to be expected in a band of this size) spiced it up a bit and MD Michael Lamb went to and fro – trumpet section to rostrum – keeping an eye/ear on developments.  For openers – Song for My Father and the sing-a-long Sweet Georgia Brown.
Vocalist James Hedley couldn’t hang around so he got his quota in early; Beyond the Sea and Fly Me to the Moon (Keith Robinson flute intro). Trumpeter Pete Tanton took several cracking solos, the first of them on an excellent arrangement of After You’ve Gone. Dizzy popped up with Night in Tunisia and Hedley signed-off with Almost Like Being in Love.
Interval: a chat with Kath J, John T, Tony, Lucy, Mary, Peter, Phil, Barry A, the barmaid (another pint of Rivet Catcher, please).
Second set: Veronica Lake arrived. In Guy Swinton’s absence ex-pat American trumpeter Pete Tanton announced the programme. The band played In the Mood. Tanton explained that the arrangement was the one used by Doc Severinsen on Tonight (Johnny Carson). A plethora of soloists stood up throughout the evening, not a weak link in sight (a sure sign of a first rate band). Ms Lake (the wonderful Lindsay Hannon) took to the microphone. A tune or two (Makin’ Whoopee and I’ve Got You Under My Skin) and LH was done, such is the nature of a public rehearsal session. One tune caught the ear – El Caborojeno. This Bob Mintzer tune has to be heard again (thanks to PT for the correct spelling of El C…!). February’s session (26th), always the last Thursday in the month, is certain to be every bit as good. Seven o’clock sharp.
Russell.                           
Michael Lamb, Gordon Marshall, Dick Stacey & Pete Tanton (trumpets), Mark Ferris, Dr John Flood, Caroline Norris, Kieran Parnaby (trombones), Paul Gowland (tenor saxophone), Jamie Toms (tenor saxophone), Keith Robinson (alto saxophone, flute), Steve Summers (alto saxophone), Chris Karberry (baritone saxophone), Pawel Jedrzejewski (guitar), Graham Don (keyboards), Michael Whent (electric bass), Steve Wall (drums), James Hedley (vocals) & Lindsay Hannon (vocals)

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