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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.

Monday, November 09, 2015

Mike Durham’s Classic Jazz Party – Village Hotel, the afternoon set Sunday Nov. 8

(Review by Russell)
Seven sets in five hours on one stage. Musicians took to the stage, and vacated it, in good time, ensuring events ran to schedule. Star names appeared in a mind boggling number of combos. Some, at the conclusion of a set, stepped off the stand for a minute or two before resuming their place in the brass, reeds or rhythm sections. The function suite’s acoustics enabled the guitarists to play acoustically – and be heard – in a variety of settings. Grand piano, a vintage percussion assemblage, string and brass bass instruments stage right and left, Mike Durham’s Classic Jazz Party ran like clockwork.
The Union Rhythm Kings stomped-off at noon led by Frans Sjöström. Humpty Dumpty, Bill Challis’ arrangement of Jelly Roll’s Crocodile Cradle and a hot Clarinet Marmalade made for an impressive start. Bent Persson, Kris Kompen, Lars Frank and the ‘boys’ (the youthful Nicholas Ball qualifies, likewise Kompen) met with a great reception from a full house.
Orange Blossoms pollinated, the Casa Loma Orchestra bloomed. The exceptional talent that is Josh Duffee put together a ten piece band to explore the legacy of Jean Goldkette’s swing band. Percussionist Duffee seemingly popped up in every other set. This one, a full hour’s worth of great music, featured an ace line-up: trumpeters Andy Schumm and Duke Heitger, reeds men Michael McQuaid, Matthias Seuffert and Robert Fowler, Kompen and the N’Awlins pianist David Boeddinghaus working with the Duffee-led rhythm section of Martin Wheatley (guitar) and the ebullient Richard Pite (bass). The tuxedoed Duffee gave an authoritative account of the genesis and development of the Casa Loma band, the early years the golden period: Stompin’ Around, Dance of the Lame Duck and the piano-vocals duet featuring Janice Day on Moanin’ Low. Duffee spoke warmly of his now annual visit to the Classic Jazz Party saying: the talent and quality is 150% the whole time!
Seagoon Serenders and Men of the World promised who knows what? Keith Nichols – mastermind of the first set, accordion-playing court jester to the latter – worked alongside Michael McQuaid (cornet & reeds), Thomas Winteler (reeds), Emma Fisk (violin), Spats Langham (banjo and vocals), Janice Day and, on a couple of numbers, the fine string bass player Malcolm Sked. Add Claus Jacobi, Morton Gunnar Larsen, Henry Lemaire (guitar and banjo) and sousaphone maestro Phil Rutherford to the cast list and it became a game of musical chairs. The Mooche a highlight, so too Richard Piccolo Pete Pite!
Janice Day and Mellow Baku were happy to be the Classic Jazz Party’s Songbirds and Nightingales. Duke Heitger led the session. Alongside the amiable American was fellow trumpeter Menno Daams, Winteler (reeds), ‘Wor Emma’, the brilliant Emma Fisk and the estimable Martin Litton (piano) with Sked and Duffee. Heitger’s swing sensibilities fitted the bill and, in so doing, encouraged Duffee to demonstrate his command of ‘swing feel’ material. Baku sang the Razaf/Redman classic I Cover the Waterfront. Brilliant! A small group Baku swing session wouldn’t have gone amiss!
In describing Duke Heitger as an amiable guy the same applies to Andy Schumm. A Bix disciple, What Bix could have played – Volume 2 gave the American every excuse (as if one were needed!) to revisit last year’s session focusing on tunes Beiderbecke played but never recorded. And what a line-up!... Schumm, Kompen, McQuaid, Boeddinghaus, Sjöström and Duffee. Wolverine Blues, digging back to the Original Dixieland Jazz Band, Driftwood and more – a great set.
Thomas Winteler plays Bechet closed the entertainment marathon. Hot isn’t the word! Joining Winteler: Bent Persson, trumpet, Graham Hughes, trombone, Morton Gunnar Larsen, piano, Jacob Ullberger, banjo, Frans Sjöström, bass saxophone, Henry Lemaire,  bass and percussionist Nicholas Ball. Muskrat Ramble, Blues in the Air to When You and I Were Young, Maggie to Lady Luck and more. Thomas Winteler was Sidney Bechet!    
Russell.          

1 comment :

EmmaFiskJazzVio said...

I didn't see you there Wor Russell! Hope you enjoyed it.
Emma x

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