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Bebop Spoken There

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Simon Spillett: A lovely review from the dean of jazz bloggers, Lance Liddle...

Josh Weir: I love the writing on bebop spoken here... I think the work you are doing is amazing.

Postage

16382 (and counting) posts since we started blogging 16 years ago. 262 of them this year alone and, so far, 59 this month (April 20).

From This Moment On ...

April

Tue 23: Vieux Carre Hot 4 @ Victoria & Albert Inn, Seaton Delaval. 12:30-3:30pm. £12.00. ‘St George’s Day Afternoon Tea’. Gig with ‘Lashings of Victoria Sponge Cake, along with sandwiches & scones’.
Tue 23: Jalen Ngonda @ Newcastle University Students’ Union. POSTPONED!

Wed 24: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm. Free.
Wed 24: Darlington Big Band @ Darlington & Simpson Rolling Mills Social Club, Darlington. 7:00pm. Free. Rehearsal session (open to the public).
Wed 24: Sinatra: Raw @ Darlington Hippodrome. 7:30pm. Richard Shelton.
Wed 24: Take it to the Bridge @ The Globe, Newcastle. 7:30pm. Free.
Wed 24: Death Trap @ Theatre Royal, Newcastle. 7:30pm. Rambert Dance Co. Two pieces inc. Goat (inspired by the music of Nina Simone) with on-stage musicians.

Thu 25: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ The Holystone, Whitley Road, North Tyneside. 1:00pm. Free.
Thu 25: Jim Jams @ King’s Hall, Newcastle University. 1:15pm. Jim Jams’ funk collective.
Thu 25: Gateshead Jazz Appreciation Society @ Gateshead Central Library, Gateshead. 2:30pm.
Thu 25: Death Trap @ Theatre Royal, Newcastle. 7:30pm. Rambert Dance Co. Two pieces inc. Goat (inspired by the music of Nina Simone) with on-stage musicians.
Thu 25: Jeremy McMurray & the Pocket Jazz Orchestra @ Arc, Stockton. 8:00pm.
Thu 25: Kate O’Neill, Alan Law & Paul Grainger @ Prohibition Bar, Newcastle. 8:00pm. Free. A ‘Jar on the Bar’ gig.
Thu 25: Tees Hot Club @ Dorman’s Club, Middlesbrough. 8:30pm. Guests: Richie Emmerson (tenor sax); Neil Brodie (trumpet); Adrian Beadnell (bass); Garry Hadfield (keys).

Fri 26: Graham Hardy Quartet @ The Gala, Durham. 1:00pm. £8.00.
Fri 26: Classic Swing @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm. Free.
Fri 26: Rendezvous Jazz @ The Monkseaton Arms. 1:00pm. Free.
Fri 26: New Orleans Preservation Jazz Band @ The Oxbridge Hotel, Stockton. 1:00pm. £5.00.
Fri 26: Paul Skerritt with the Danny Miller Big Band @ Glasshouse, Gateshead. 8:00pm.
Fri 26: Abbie Finn’s Finntet @ Traveller’s Rest, Darlington. 8:00pm. Opus 4 Jazz Club.

Sat 27: Abbie Finn Trio @ The Vault, Darlington. 6:00pm. Free.
Sat 27: Papa G’s Troves @ Prohibition Bar, Newcastle. 8:00pm. Free. A ‘Jar on the Bar’ gig.

Sun 28: Musicians Unlimited @ Jackson’s Wharf, Hartlepool. 1:00pm. Free.
Sun 28: More Jam Festival Special @ The Globe, Newcastle. 2:00pm. Free. A ’10 Years a Co-op’ festival event.
Sun 28: Swing Dance workshop @ The Globe, Newcastle. 2:00-4:00pm. Free (registration required). A ’10 Years a Co-op’ festival event.
Sun 28: 4B @ The Ticket Office, Whitley Bay Metro Station. 3:00pm. Free.
Sun 28: Scott Bradlee's Postmodern Jukebox: The '10' Tour @ Glasshouse International Centre for Music, Gateshead. 7:30pm. £41.30 t0 £76.50.
Sun 28: Alligator Gumbo @ The Globe, Newcastle. 8:00pm. A ’10 Years a Co-op’ festival event.
Sun 28: Jerron Paxton @ The Cluny, Newcastle. Blues, jazz etc.

Mon 29: Harmony Brass @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm. Free.
Mon 29: Michael Young Trio @ The Engine Room, Sunderland. 6:30-8:30pm. Free.

Saturday, May 14, 2016

Roy Ayers @ Sage Gateshead - May 12.

(Review by Steve T/Photos courtesy of Barry Todd)
Last time Roy Ayers played in the North East I missed it because of a more convenient concert elsewhere, which was a mistake. Had the Ronnie Scott Night in Durham been announced before I got my ticket this time, I'd probably have missed him again; it was similarly more convenient, cheaper and with good reviews but that would have been a mistake also since Roy isn't getting any younger but for now he can still Fonk.
Luckily support acts aren't always good indicators of attendance and the embarrassing number swelled when the students - very different to Durham students - and rare groove/acid Jazz types seeped from the woodwork right on cue. Not busy but not embarrassing either.
It was clear from the first slap bass where this was going ; Love Will Bring Us Back Together,  standard fare for rare groovers, the guitarist, very much the musician in the band, strumming in  a style most associated with Nile Rodgers though it goes back through the classic funk bands to Leo Nocentelli, immaculate rhythm guitarist with The Meters.
Never a great singer, Ayers’ voice is now quite frail and he had a co-lead vocalist on percussion and 'cool.' Incidentally, announcements by both men were inaudible to these ears and I have had no success identifying any of the musicians
He started out comping on electric piano, but his first visit to the vibes brought the applause it deserved. No longer a master, he's still impressive for seventy-four and seemed most relaxed at the vibraphone.
Couple of songs in and Running Away reinvigorated things back up to fever pitch with even the Sage Gateshead staff getting down and there were some serious dad moves from some of the oldies not yet ready to spend stand-up concerts crossing and uncrossing their arms. The lyrics, such as they are, were left out in favour of alternating a couple of the featured chants which kept the dancers going a little too long before another vibes solo gave it the needed boost.
Unfortunately, this was the last we heard from amplified vibes and from now on they were synthesised. From chatting afterwards I now know that this was a slight glitch in an otherwise highly enjoyable evening, but it was only afterwards, thinking about the other singer tampering with the vibes, I wondered whether this was a technical hitch. I'm not sure what the point of it was other than because you can, and if Jazz meant vibes to be synthesised it would have happened in his heyday in the seventies when the majority of Jazz musicians plugged in.
The Fonk kept on coming with a solo from the man at the back on bass and even cooler but the biggest applause went to the drummer, not quite so cool, when he did some clever scat singing morphing in to a rapper which was a delight (see what I did there).
However, most of the soloing on successive extended jams went to the fine guitarist, switching midway through from that most versatile guitar, the Telecaster, to its closest relative the Stratocaster for a rockier sound and, dare I say, some rip letting?
Inevitably Everybody Loves The Sunshine was the encore, not my favourite end of Roy Ayers' oeuvre, the rare groove. discoveries but this seems to be the majority constituency of his audience though I suspect Hoochie attracted Jazz/funk/soul/nightclub punters too.
Had it been part of the Jazz Festival I imagine many of the captive audience would have wandered in, filling out the room and having a thoroughly good time, and maybe some of the rare groove/acid house/ modern soul types may have wandered into other gigs too.
Steven T

2 comments :

baz said...

Happy to be a "dad dancer" - Fantastic evening in an intimate venue - good time had by all. Great to meet the maestro when he came out to talk to his fans afterwards!

Steven T. said...

And mighty fine they were too. Thanks for the great photos.

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