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Bebop Spoken There

Hugh Masekela: “I advise every kid to check out their past because without a past you are in limbo.” (Songlines December 2017)

Leo Richardson: “I think your image is really important. You look at those old Blue Note recordings and you look at the liner note, the booklet and they’re in the studio and they’re wearing shirt and ties. They used to wear suits all the time.” – (Jazzwise December 2017/January 2018)

Submissions for review

Whilst we appreciate the many emails, texts, messages and other communications we receive requesting album/gig reviews on BSH, regrettably, we are unable to reply to them all other than those we are able to answer with a positive response.
Similarly, CDs received by post will only be considered if accompanied by sufficient background material.
Finally, bear in mind that this is a jazz-based site when submitting your album.
Lance

Today Friday December 15

Afternoon

Rendezvous Jazz - Monkseaton Arms, Front Street, Monkseaton NE25 8DP. Tel: 0191 251 3928. 1:00pm. Free.

Evening

Jazz Café Christmas Party - Jazz Café. 8:00pm. Julija Jacenaite & Alan Law (8:00pm), Mo Scott Band (9:00pm). £10.00. (£8.00. advance).

Strictly Smokin’ Big Band - Gosforth Civic Theatre, Regent Farm Road, Gosforth NE3 3HD. Tel: 0191 258 4111. 7:30pm. First night of two. A guaranteed sellout.

Kentucky Cowtippers - Billy Bootleggers, Nelson St, Newcastle NE1 5AN. 9:00pm. Free.

Ray Dales - Traveller’s Rest, West Auckland Road, Cockerton, Darlington DL3 9ER. 8:30pm. £8.00.

The Standards - Bar Loco, Leazes Park Road, Newcastle NE1 4PG. 7:00pm. Free. South American band playing a Greenpeace benefit.

CoSYJO - Washington Arts Centre, Biddick Lane, Fatfield, Washington NE38 8AB. Tel: 0191 561 3455. 7:00pm. £6.00. (£4.00. concs.). CoSYJO (City of Sunderland Youth Jazz Orchestra).

Smokin’ Spitfires - Platform 1, Station Street, Bedlington NE22 7JW. Tel: 01670 828808. 7:00pm. £5.50. Enhanced line-up (The Mighty Smokin’ Spitfires) with David Blakey (trumpet) & Lloyd Howell (drums).

Steve Bone - Al Forno, 81 Skinnergate, Darlington DL3 7LX. 7pm.

Sophie Armstrong: Jazz at Christmas - Maltings Theatre & Cinema, Eastern Lane, Berwick upon Tweed TD15 1AJ. Tel: 01289 330999. 7:30pm. £13.00.

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

Saturday, May 21, 2016

Thomas Strønen – Time is a Blind Guide @ Sage Gateshead. May 20

Thomas Strønen (percussion), Kit Downes (piano), Lucy Railton (cello), Håka Aase (violin) & Ole Morten Vågan (double bass)
(Review by Russell/Photo courtesy of Ken Drew).
A busy Friday evening at Sage Gateshead – the Royal Northern Sinfonia in Sage One, the soulful Laura Mvula playing to a standing-room-only crowd in Sage Two and the Anglo-Norwegian project of Thomas Strønen and friends in the Northern Rock Foundation Hall.  
The cabaret-style layout in the flexible studio space of the Northern Rock helps engender an informal air, making the connection between performer and audience more immediate. Percussionist Thomas Strønen’s Time is a Blind Guide project recorded an album a year or so ago and it is only now that the musicians were able to commit to a short tour such is the busy schedule of all concerned. This Sage Gateshead date, the first of four concerts in four days (London, Birmingham and Norwich to follow), renewed Strønen’s connections with the Borough of Gateshead. 
The tall, tanned percussionist recalled a gig at Caedmon Hall with Iain Ballamy in their Food days, long before the Norman Foster-designed Sage Gateshead first laid its foundations. Time is a Blind Guide (its inspiration Anne Michaels' novel Fugitive Pieces) is an elegant conception. Countrymen Håka Aase (violin) and Ole Morten Vågan (double bass) share Strønen’s cool Nordic mindset; still, at rest, listening. The quintet’s British component – Kit Downes (piano) and cellist Lucy Railton – have a clear empathy for the music, similarly stilled, at rest, yet fully engaged.
Baka, The Drowned City and Lost Souls – three pieces, without pause, to open the concert with Strønen’s subsequent observation: Cheerful and positive! The Norwegian was aware that the music was anything but foot-tapping Dr Jazz material. He referred to the current tour as a tour of ‘cultural capitals’. Sage Gateshead, Kings Place, London, CBSO Centre, Birmingham and Norwich Playhouse succeed as bastions of culture making possible gigs such as Strønen’s Time is a Blind Guide. A final piece (Fugitive Pieces) developed from a typical minimalist opening to something approaching sophisticated swing via Strønen’s virtuosic brush work. The Jazz Police went home satisfied.
Tell Tale: David Ferris (piano), James Banner (double bass) & Ric Yarborough (drums)
Earlier, a support set featured the Birmingham-based trio Tell Tale. Recent graduates of the Birmingham Conservatoire hot house, this half hour set proved to be a real bonus. Structured improv (rehearsed to the nth) drawing on Dostoyevsky, Conlon Nancarrow – Numbers (for Conlon), comp. James Banner – and French impressionist painter Corot, Tell Tale maintained the ‘High Art’ connection, a million crochets away from N’Awlins.    
Russell.

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Bebop Spoken Here -- Here, being the north-east of England -- centred in the blues heartland of Newcastle and reaching down to the Tees Delta and looking upwards to the Land of the Kilt.
Not a very original title, I know; not even an accurate one as my taste, whilst centred around the music of Bird and Diz, extends in many directions and I listen to everything from King Oliver to Chick Corea and beyond. Not forgetting the Great American Songbook the contents of which has provided the inspiration for much great jazz and quality popular singing for round about a century.
The idea of this blog is for you to share your thoughts and pass on your comments on discs, gigs, jazz - music in general. If you've been to a gig/concert or heard a CD that knocked you sideways please share your views with us. Tell us about your favourites, your memories, your dislikes.
Lance (Who wishes it to be known that he is not responsible for postings other than his own and that he's not always responsible for them.)
Contact: lanceliddle@gmail.com I look forward to hearing from you.

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