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Bebop Spoken There

Brian Dee: "I feel my generation had one advantage over today's players in that we were not musically educated in colleges, so we all sounded different. I could tell who it was just by the sound." - (Jazz Rag, Summer 2020).

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Hudson Music: Lance's "Bebop Spoken Here" is one of the heaviest and most influential jazz blogs in the UK.

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11,783 (and counting) posts since we started blogging 12 years ago. 1023 of them this year alone and, so far, 50 this month (Sept. 17).

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SEPTEMBER

IT IS ADVISABLE TO CHECK IN ADVANCE WITH THE VENUE THAT THE GIG IS ON

SUNDAY 20

Vieux Carre Hot 4 - Spanish City, Spanish City Plaza, Whitley Bay NE26 1BG. Tel: 0191 691 7090. 12 noon. Free.

Riviera Quartet - The Globe, 11 Railway St., Newcastle NE4 7AD. 8:00pm. A limited number of seats are available which MUST be bought in advance online. £7:50 or £5:45 live stream only.

THURSDAY 24

Vieux Carre Jazzmen - The Holystone, Whitley Road, North Tyneside NE27 0DA. 0191 266 6173. 1:00pm. Free.

Maine St Jazzmen - Sunniside Social Club, Sunniside Road, Sunniside NE16 5NA. Tel: 0191 488 7347. 8:00pm - 10pm. Free. Note earlier start/finish.

Friday, June 24, 2016

James Birkett & Bradley Johnston @ The Lit & Phil. June 24 James Birkett (guitar) & Bradley Johnston (guitar)

(Review by Russell).
A large turn out at the Lit & Phil today, extra seating required, and little wonder, given that not one, but two, of the finest jazz guitarists around were there to entertain another attentive audience in the ongoing lunchtime concert series. A master and pupil working duo – James Birkett and Bradley Johnston – presented a potted history of jazz guitar.
The one-hour programme flew by. We got the blues, skated through the park, meditated, waltzed up to a castle, met Alfie and went to Spain. The programme was familiar, yet it mattered not a jot. Some in the audience were new to the Lit and Phil and new to James and Bradley’s superb interpretations of classic material and the presentation of some of their own compositions. Birkett’s Blues for BJ and John Lewis’ most elegant Skating in Central Park delighted the audience and on Eddie Lang’s Stringin’ the Blues Dr. Birkett suggested we imagine Johnston as Joe Venuti…from one virtuoso to another! A tune by Antonio Carlos Jobim is always welcome and Meditation was the tune on this occasion.

Bireli Lagrene set the place alight. Well, not Lagrene the arsonist, more his composition and our dynamic duo’s take on it. The junior man of the partnership – BJ – tore it up and went one-nil up. Birkett wheeled out Sonny Rollins, not in person, more in spirit. Double helpings too – first Doxy, then Oleo. Birkett hit the back of the net. 1-1. Django is all but compulsory, it should be the law. The law-abiding duo played Django’s Castle.

An immaculate reading of the Bacharach and David masterpiece Alfie was accompanied by the beautifully timed banging and clanging of scaffolders at work. The Lit and Phil is in need of restoration, the work must go on. Anyway, what’s all this jazz about? Into the last five minutes, 1-1 between JB and BJ. Spain would decide matters. Not the EU state, Chick Corea’s Spain. A party piece if ever there was one, extra time, then penalties, the final score was an honourable score draw. Brilliant guitar playing, two nice guys, a full house. Vote JAZZ!

July’s date features Paul Edis playing a solo piano concert. It’s on the last Friday in July, 29th, starting at one o’clock. Recommended. 
Russell.                      

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