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Bebop Spoken There

Camila Meza: "Some tonalities or chords are colors to me: G major is blue, D major is orange and B minor is totally yellow." - (DownBeat July 2019)

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Today Monday June 17

Afternoon

Jazz

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

Evening

Tenement Jazz Band - Prohibition Bar, Pink Lane, Newcastle NE1 5DW. 8:30pm (doors). Free (donations).

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

Saturday, March 07, 2015

Great North Big Band Jazz Festival (Day 1) @ North Shore, Sunderland. March 6

Paul Jones-Mick Donnelly Quintet: Paul Jones (alto saxophone), Sue Ferris (tenor saxophone & flute), Stuart Collingwood (keyboards), Anth Ord (bass) & Adrian Tilbrook (drums)
(Review by Russell)
The twelfth annual Great North Big Band Jazz Festival opened with the Paul Jones-Mick Donnelly Quintet. The line-up wasn’t quite as anticipated. Mick Donnelly (tenor) begged leave of absence to give his services to a high profile charity event, thus a last minute dep was sought. Sue Ferris – damsel to the rescue – stepped into the breach. The band’s bass player – Neil Harland – was unavailable, so, one of the new generation of north east jazz musicians got the job, Mr Anth Ord. Not quite a scratch band, how would they fare?

The quintet’s audience included the Festival Big Band (an ensemble comprising some of the north east’s finest young musicians) and first time visitors to Sunderland, Altrincham Grammar School for Boys Swing Band. The first number set the pace, then some. Herbie Hancock’s Driftin’  heard Paul Jones’ alto, then, wow-wee!, Sue Ferris’ tenor solo blew the roof off Sunderland University Students’ Union! Truly great tenor playing. American star names – past or present – would have been left trailing. Sandu followed. We weren’t aware that Ferris had merely been warming up; more absolutely killing tenor saxophone! Peri’s-Scope – guess what? Ferris did it again! Mick who?
Stevie Wonder, The Song is You, a Sonny Rollins’ calypso… pianist Stuart Collingwood threw in a couple of solos, Jones again, Anth Ord (on the money all night) did a grand job and Adrian Tilbrook (drums) was in fine form throughout.
The Festival Big Band performed material developed over several months in workshops led by Bill Watson. Catch As Catch Can, The Londonderry Air and Blue Skies. A varied programme showcasing, in particular, a nine-strong saxophone section, deservedly won applause. Bill Bailey featured a sixty four bar reeds intro. Watson appeared satisfied, the audience liked it. Pianist Alice Buhaenko premiered a her composition – The Festival Overture – with, in parts, a Spanish feel to it. Trombonist Hugh Morris is an arranger – composer and arranger are definitely ones to watch out for.
Festival guests Altrincham Grammar School for Boys Swing Band closed the first night of this year’s Great North Big Band Jazz Festival. The boys are making a weekend of it; participating in a Saturday morning workshop and on Sunday they will be taking part in the schools’ section of the competition. This Friday evening short set introduced a band well-schooled by MD Colin Myers. Adrien Re, Sammy Nestico and Pharrell Williams – three markedly different composers – put the spotlight on the band’s sections. Trumpets (all six of them) impressed and Sam Myers stood up for the trombones. Happy, Williams’ tune of the year (was it 2013? 2014?), concluded a polished performance. The boys are sure to enjoy the weekend – win, lose or draw. Note: Mick Donnelly will be back (in tandem with Paul Jones) on Saturday and Sunday to act as competition adjudicator. Russell.

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