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Bebop Spoken There

Piers Paul Read: "Bruce Reynolds and Biggs shared an interest in Sex, Jazz and Hemingway." - (The Train Robbers by Piers Paul Read, Coronet Books 1979.)

George Shearing: "Speaking about Johann Sebastian Bach I think he'd be a real jazzer if he were alive today. I mean any man who has two wives, twenty kids, gets kicked out of the church for being too harmonically radical and drinks beer can't be all wrong can he?" - (Crescendo March 1984.)

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 all of them 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

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Today Thursday July 19

Afternoon

Vieux Carré Jazzmen - Holystone, Whitley Road, Holystone NE27 0DA. Tel: 266 6173. 1:00pm. Free.

Evening

Maine St. Jazzmen - Sunniside Social Club, Holywell Lane, Sunniside, Gateshead NE16 5NJ. 8:30pm. Free.

Alexys de Alfaro: Guitar Dreams with Coco Vega - Prohibition Bar, Arch 3, Brandling Street, Gateshead NE8 2BA. Doors 7:00pm. A ‘jar on the bar’ gig. Guitar & percussion.

Alter Ego - St James’ & St Basil’s Church, Fenham Hall Drive, Newcastle NE4 9EJ. 7:30pm. £10.00.

Jesse Bannister Quartet - Jazz Café, Pink Lane, Newcastle NE1 5DW. Tel: 0191 222 9882. 8:00pm. £10.00. (£8.00. concs.). JNE.

Northern Monkey Brass Band - Jubilee Park, Spennymoor DL16. 6:00-9:00pm. Free. Big BRASS Bash (Durham Brass Festival).

New Orleans Preservation Jazz Band - Oxbridge, Oxbridge Lane, Stockton on Tees TS18 4AW. 8:30pm.

Tees Hot Club w. Donna Hewitt (alto); Josh Bentham (tenor); Dave Archbaid (keys) - Dormans Club, Oxford Road, Middlesbrough TS5 5DT. Tel: 01642 823813. 9pm. Free.

Jazz Jam - Fire Station, High Street West, Sunderland SR1 3DT. Tel: 0191 594 7241. 8pm. Free.

Billy's Buskers: Plug in and Play - Billy Bootleggers, Nelson St, Newcastle NE1 5AN. 7:00pm. Free.

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

Monday, March 27, 2017

Julian Siegel Jazz Orchestra @ Ronnie Scott's - March 16

(Review by Brian Blain/Photo courtesy of Anne Rigg)
From the spine-tingling brass stabs and powerful backbeat of Gene Calderazzo's drumming on the opening Mama Badgers, that took me back to that Brecker Brothers’ album with the WDR German Radio Big Band, the packed house at Ronnie Scott's (absolutely no freebies!) just knew that they were in for the kind of jazz excitement that only a 17 piece band can deliver.
Not that the whole program consisted of powerhouse sturm und drang; far from it. Tenor playing Siegel is a subtle and complex musical character, partially inspired by one of his mentors, Stan Sulzmann, one of the members of the saxophone section, and possibly responsible for the kind of  pah writing that pitted  Liam Noble in full elegiac mode against beautiful saxophone voicings on Tales From the Jacquard of which more later.

One of the great joys of Julian's writing was the wonderful contrast in moods throughout and for me, although thoroughly contemporary, somewhere in its DNA, echoes of classic sounds of the past, like the 'sizzle' of the trumpet section led by the astonishing Tom Walsh - still a student at the Royal Academy - on that opening theme. Elsewhere, in a Jacquard passage
with all the sections complementing and moving 'tutti' fashion against each other with a particularly rich creamy mix coming from the woodwinds, I even thought of Kenton.
The core of the long single set was Tales From the Jacquard, commissioned by the Arts Council, and around which Julian's 'dream tour' of six Midland towns and Ronnie's was built. It takes its name from the lace making machinery which was once an important part of Nottingham's life and an industry in which Julian's parents earned their living.
The opening section was peculiarly gripping, consisting of recorded sounds of the machinery which provided a multi-rhythmic basis for the thematic material of its subsequent sections. In a band full of strong soloists such as trombonists, Mark Nightingale and Trevor Mires, the flute playing of Tori Freestone in this piece was outstanding, and another section consisting of a hair-raising saxophone soli section which gradually gave way to bell sounding chimes suggestive of quiet Sunday rest for the factory employees was quite brilliant.
There was so much happening in this memorable event that it would be criminal not to mention the role of  Derby Jazz in kick-starting the whole project and of trumpet player Nick Smart, Head of Jazz Studies at The Royal Academy who conducted this complex but totally accessible music magnificently. And, oh yes, his own band Black Eyed Dog, with a superb guest appearance on Nick Drake's River Man, by Claire Martin, was just marvellous, well worth a spot on any Festival in the calendar. 

Brian Blain.

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About this blog - contact details.

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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