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13,508 (and counting) posts since we started blogging 13 years ago. 926 of them this year alone and, so far, 90 this month (July 27).

Saturday, April 16, 2016

GIJF – Strictly Smokin’ Big Band @ Sage Gateshead. April 15

(Review/photos by Kath Jobes)
After a brief welcome and introduction from Ros Rigby OBE, Performance Programme Director at The Sage, a wall of sound that is the SSBB greeted the audience which encompassed several local Jazz musicians including the delightfully talented and elegant Alice Grace, who hopefully we shall hear at next year’s festival… it’s fantastic that local musicians support one another. 

The tables soon filled up and the standing area was jam packed within minutes A fabulous intro with the lovely Lindsay Hannon singing The More I See You.  This was equalled in impact by F’reez’s first number, Harry Connick Jnr’s version of I Could Write A Book.  I have seen SSBB on many occasions and this was one of the best sound-wise, I guess that pro sound guys make all the difference when it comes to getting that wall of sound, and it would seem that the relocation of the concourse stage between the two staircases has provided a more intimate setting and greatly improved acoustics!
A couple of really tight numbers from the Band, I love Paris featuring the mellow trombone of  Mark Ferris and My Favourite Things led to a newer number from Ms. Hannon,  Bob Milner’s TV Blues with a stupendous  frontline of all five Saxes, followed by  Not Just a Date.  The band went from strength to strength with a Disney tune, Zero to Hero and Song for my Father featuring Steve Summers (Alto), Keiron Parnaby (tmb) and Band Leader, Michael Lamb (tpt),  F’reez finished off the first set with Let the Good Times Roll, and boy oh boy were they rollin’!
The second set kicked off with F’reez and Cheek to Cheek, which brought 2 pairs of dancers to the floor, and for most of the second set we were given a superb display of swing dance; the couples alternated partners to take rest breaks and show off a variety of moves.
Art Blakey’s Moanin’ featured more of the usual suspects, Paul Gowland, (ten) Pete Tanton (tpt), Graham Don (pno) and Steve Summers (Alto), then  gave way to F‘reez turned on That Old Black Magic and F’reez responded with Almost Like Being in Love.  Then Miss Hannon said things became Too Darn Hot, so for the final number she took us on a cool trip down Route 66… the crowd yelled for one more so F’reez obliged with Hallelujah I Love Her So…  yep… the crowd loved the SSBB so too!
Saturday evening sees more fabulous concourse music, all for free, I recommend The Lindsay Hannon Plus who are in the same late spot from 10pm onwards, and the Late Night Jam Session at the Jazz Café with the Pete Gilligan Trio… not to be missed!
Kath.
Strictly Smokin’ Big Band: MD Michael Lamb, Pete Tanton, Tom Hill, Dick Stacey (trumpets); Kieran Parnaby, Mark Ferris, Robert ‘Pez’ Perry, Dr John Flood (trombones); Laurie Rangecroft, Paul Gowland, Jamie Toms, Steve Summers, Keith Robinson (reeds), Graham Don (piano), Pawel Jedrzejewski (guitar), Michael Whent (bass), Guy Swinton (drums), Lindsay Hannon (vocals) & F’reez (vocals)

1 comment :

Patti said...

I shouldn't have wussed out after the first set - excuses, excuses! I'll have to wait until June - I've booked my tickets for this fab band's Hoochie Coochie gig. A great review, Kath - and yes, the sound was excellent.

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