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Bebop Spoken There

Greg Abate: "So many sounds are ugly now. There are no harmonics, no chords. What do people hear these days? Why do things have to change from that good music?" (JazzTimes June/July 2022)

The Things They Say!

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

Rupert Burley (Dynamic Agency): "BSH just goes from strength to strength".

'606' Club: "A toast to Lance Liddle of the terrific jazz blog 'Bebop Spoken Here'"

The Strictly Smokin' Big Band included Be Bop Spoken Here (sic) in their 5 Favourite Jazz Blogs.
Ann Braithwaite (Braithwaite & Katz Communications) You’re the BEST! -- Holly Cooper:"Lance writes pull quotes like no one else!"

Postage

14378 (and counting) posts since we started blogging 14 years ago. 597 of them this year alone and, so far, 2 this month (July 2).

From This Moment On ...

July

Sat 02: Hot Fingers @ St Augustine’s Parish Centre, Darlington. 12:30pm. £10.00.
Sat 02: Play Jazz! workshop @ The Globe, Newcastle. 1:30pm. Tutor Steve Glendinning: Latin jazz. £25.00. Enrol at: www.jazz.coop.
Sat 02: Talk: Storytelling & jazz as an expression of urban life @ The Exchange, North Shields. 1:45pm. A Blues, Jazz & Swing Festival event.
Sat 02: The Commandments + On Parole @ The Exchange, North Shields. 2:30pm. A Blues, Jazz & Swing Festival event. Rhythm & blues.
Sat 02: Geordie Jazz Man @ The Exchange, North Shields. 5:30pm. A Blues, Jazz & Swing Festival event. Screening of Abi Lewis’ documentary film about Keith Crombie & the Jazz Café.
Sat 02: The Delta Prophets Trio @ The Exchange, North Shields. 6:30pm. A Blues, Jazz & Swing Festival event. Rhythm & blues.
Sat 02: Swing Manouche @ Claypath Deli, Durham. 7:00pm.
Sat 02: Swung Eight & King Bees @ The Exchange, North Shields. 7:30pm. A Blues, Jazz & Swing Festival event. Swing dance + ace Chicago blues band.
Sat 02: Tyne Valley Big Band @ Greenside Community Centre, Ryton. 7:30pm.
Sat 02: Patrick Cromb @ Prohibition Bar, Newcastle. 8:00pm.

Sun 03 Vieux Carré Hot 4 @ Spanish City, Whitley Bay. 12 noon.
Sun 03: Smokin’ Spitfires @ The Cluny, Newcastle. 12:45pm.
Sun 03: Ruth Lambert & Martin Craggs @ The Exchange, North Shields. 2:00pm. A Blues, Jazz & Swing Festival event.
Sun 03: Abbie Finn Trio @ The Exchange, North Shields. 3:00pm. A Blues, Jazz & Swing Festival event.
Sun 03: Wild Women of Wylam @ The Exchange, North Shields. 4:30pm. A Blues, Jazz & Swing Festival event.
Sun 03: 4B @ The Exchange, North Shields. 5:30pm. A Blues, Jazz & Swing Festival event.
Sun 03: Jazz Jam @ The Exchange, North Shields. 6:30pm. A Blues, Jazz & Swing Festival event.
Sun 03: Jeffrey Hewer Quartet @ The Globe, Newcastle. 8:00pm.

Mon 04: Jazz in the Afternoon @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.

Wed 06: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.
Wed 06: Michael Bublé @ Durham County Cricket Club, Chester le Street. Doors: 5:00pm.
Wed 06: Darlington Big Band @ Darlington & Simpson Rolling Mills Club, Darlington. 7:00pm. Rehearsal session (open to the public).
Wed 06: 4B @ The Exchange, North Shields. 7:00pm.
Wed 06: Take it to the Bridge @ The Globe, Newcastle. 7:30pm.

Thu 07: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ The Holystone, North Tyneside. 1:00pm.
Thu 07: Gateshead Jazz Appreciation Society @ Gateshead Central Library. 3:00-5:00pm. £1.00. All welcome.
Thu 07: Lara Jones + Echo Juliet @ Cobalt Studios, Newcastle. 7:00pm.
Thu 07: Thursday Night Prayer Meeting @ The Globe, Newcastle. 8:00pm. Free admission (donations).
Thu 07: Maine Street Jazzmen @ Sunniside Social Club, Gateshead. 8:30pm.
Thu 07: Tees Hot Club @ Dorman’s Club, Middlesbrough. 9:00pm.

Fri 08: Alex Clarke Quartet @ Bishop Auckland Town Hall. 1:00pm. £7.00.
Fri 08: Classic Swing @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.
Fri 08: New Orleans Preservation Jazz Band @ Oxbridge Hotel, Stockton. 1:00pm. £5.00.
Fri 08: Rendezvous Jazz @ The Monkseaton Arms, Monkseaton. 1:00pm.

Sat 09: Jazz Stage @ Mouth of the Tyne Festival: Zoë Gilby Duo (12 noon); Vieux Carré Jazzmen (1:35pm); Harmony Brass (3:10pm); Ruth Lambert Quartet (4:40pm). Outdoor stage adjacent to Tynemouth Priory.

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

The Jazz North East Fluid Orchestra - a 50 years celebration @ Newcastle Arts Centre - December 13

(Review by Lance/Photo courtesy of Ken Drew.)
Possibly the most ambitious project by any regional jazz organisation, Jazz North East's 50th-anniversary celebration attracted a goodly crowd to the Arts Centre for this performance by the Jazz North East 'Fluid' Orchestra - an ensemble specially formed to celebrate the occasion.
Jazz North East came into being in 1966 as the brainchild of the late Chris Yates and was the first grant supported jazz organisation in the UK.
Beginning with a concert by Earl Hines in the, now long gone, Connaught Hall JNE presented countless jazz greats at that venue and later at the Corner House. As the legendary names fell from the tree more contemporary bands and artists took over.
Tonight was to be a celebration of those 50 years.
Not 50 years of JNE music but 50 years of social happenings and events that occurred during that period as seen through the eyes of today's 12 jazz musicians and composers rounded up to form the Fluid orchestra. An apt title given the unique instrumentation and the transient nature of the music. Theremin, viola, voice, trumpet, reeds, vibes and rhythm.
The 1960s were represented by Graham Hardy's Brasillia of the North and inspired by T Dan Smith and John Poulson rather than Earl Hines and Coleman Hawkins. Graeme Wilson's sonorous baritone brought it in before dissonance took over. Mark Williams briefly restored sanity bringing a variety of soloists into the fray. Sometimes a lone voice, occasionally a duo, often a free for all. I guess this was depicting a council meeting of the day.
The 1970s, Smoke and Mirrors, a combined effort by Zoe and Andy covers the demise and disgrace of T Dan Smith, the winter of discontent (the last one), the  3 day week and my fave film - Get Carter. Zoe wails above the ensemble  - she's at the races - the Blaydon Races. The band chants Gannin' alang and there's solos from all and sundry.
The 1980s were portrayed by Corey Mwamba's Resilience Underground - striking miners, shipyard closures, the Metro and Kevin Keegan provided the inspiration.
Into the 1990s via James Mainwaring's Fog on the Tyne - not exactly Lindisfarne - lots of freedom for the soloists.
The noughties saw Faye MacCalman and Graeme Wilson bring to life photographs of Byker with Unfolding.
The Future, described as 'Improvisation by the Orchestra', brought the whole shebang to a close although, by this time, I was aboard the Metro.
This was probably the most intense gig I've ever been to and, in truth, way out of my comfort zone. The musicianship was unbelievably superb and chapeaux to JNE for setting it up. I'm sure those of my colleagues who stayed the course will add their own take on a memorable landmark in north-east jazz.
Lance.
Andy Champion (bass/bass guitar); Stephen Hanley (drums); Mark Williams (guitar); Johnny Richards (keys/electronics); Zoe Gilby (voice); Aby Vulliamy (viola); Corey Mwamba (vibes); Beatrix Ward-Fernandez (theremin); James Mainwaring, Faye MacCalman, Graeme Wilson (various reeds); Graham Hardy (trumpet/flugel).

5 comments :

Steve T said...

A once in a lifetime event which, as a relative newcomer to the North East live Jazz scene, I felt privileged to be a part of.
Not outside my comfort zone but somewhere in the outer reaches. Zoe pointing and swinging her arm around was a sight to behold and may have even inspired me - a total football philistine - to stand in the cold and rain of Sid James' Park for hours.
The Grahams, cool as ice, Mighty AC on top, underneath, in control. But it's unfair to single out anybody; without exception they were all amazing, and who knew the theremin was so versatile; for almost as long as Jazz North East has been in existence I assumed the spacey sounds of Hawkwind came from synthesizers, but now I'm not sure.
Although never boring, across what must have been about two hours of new and difficult music, the highlight for me was in the closing minutes of Fog on the Tyne with a real King Kong moment, and they could have stayed in that groove for a round of lengthy solos from me.
The Future seemed like a massive sigh of relief by everyone on the stage, starting off scrappy and directionless, it then proved the scientific theory that order always comes out of chaos; at least with twelve world class singer and musicians in tow (does Free Jazz prove or disprove this theory? Discuss!).
The order generally came as a result of drums and vibes which, writing as a non-musician, seems to me to make sense.
Zoe, Andy and Aby, getting extraordinary sounds from the viola, brought it to an impressive close but Corey wasn't having that, setting up a brilliant coda, his own laughter finally pulling down the curtain.
A few of us chatting afterwards observed that we wouldn't be there for the centenary, but were encouraged that plenty people present will, including the two Jamboning Early Birds who'll be the only ones under seventy, which should be middle-aged by then.
Big fat kudos to everyone involved.

Dave Clarke said...

I enjoyed every minute of the Fluid Orchestra concert, considering it an entirely worthy celebration of Jazz North East's 50th anniversary. I was delighted that you, Lance, attended and reviewed the gig despite your initial reservations but must make take issue with your statement that "Jazz North East came into being in 1966 as the brainchild of the late Chris Yates."

The last thing I want to do is underplay the enormous contribution which Chris made over many years to the organisation. A contribution which, as a fellow board member, I was in a good position to observe. But credit where it's due.

Chris did not join Jazz North East until 1973 and it was established in 1966 by Northern Arts, the predecessor to the Arts Council, with a voluntary committee consisting of Don Locke ( Chair), David Bell, (Treasurer), and Alan Smith (Secretary).

Even if that founding committee served for only two years the musicians they brought to Newcastle included Earl Hines, Ornette Coleman, Sonny Stitt, Clark Terry, Bob Brookmeyer, Johnny Griffin, Ben Webster and Roland Kirk. Quite a foundation for their successors, including Chris, to build on.

Lance said...

I stand corrected! And, as one who attended an inaugural meeting with the above founding committee members, my memory should have stood me in better stead. I suppose that, because it was some years later when I actually joined the committee with Margaret, Alex, Randy and Chris etc. that I overlooked what had gone before. My apologies to all concerned and thank you Dave for reminding me that I'm getting old and my memory is fading...

Steve T said...

I'm in my mid fifties and my memory's shot; that'll teach me.
Sonny Stitt, Ben Webster and Roland Kirk? Sh!t!

martinrp said...

As usual with weekday gigs this was a no-go for me, living near Carlisle. I did, however, get to the open rehearsal at the Bridge the previous Sunday and could tell that this was going to be something special. Hope it isn't their last outing.

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