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COVID-19

In the current climate we are doing our best to keep everyone up to date. All gigs, as we all know, are off.

However, good old YouTube has plenty to offer both old and new to help us survive whilst housebound. Plus now is a good time to stock up on your CDs.

Also, keep an eye out for live streaming sessions.

Alternatively, you could do as they do in Italy and sing from your balcony.

Today

As we all know there are no live gigs taking place in the immediate future. However, any links to jazz streaming that are deemed suitable - i.e. with a professional approach - will be considered for posting.

Monday, May 15, 2017

The Jazztones @ The Quakerhouse, Darlington - May14














Shaune Eland (trumpet), Alan Thompson (tenor saxophone), Steve McGarvie (keyboards & soprano saxophone), Alan Smith (bass) & Stephen Fletcher (drums) + Beth Roberts (alto saxophone) & Ted Pearce (keyboards)
(Review by Russell)
Blues for Duane, One Mint Julep, Bernie’s Tune, three gems for starters. The Jazztones returned to play another set at the Quakerhouse, the de facto HQ of the long-running Darlington Jazz Club. The Mechanics’ Yard pub hosts regular gigs – blues, rock, and, twice a month, jazz. A six o’clock start attracts listeners and performers across the age spectrum – teenagers to octogenarians. An illustration of this early evening gig policy presented an established small group (the Jazztones) a been-there-done-that musician invited to sit in (pianist Mr Ted Pearce), and star of the future, Ms Beth Roberts playing alto saxophone.

Black Orpheus and Comin’ Home Baby rounded off a first set of relaxed jazz. Trumpeter Shaune Eland and Alan Thompson (tenor saxophone) exchanged leisurely solos supported by pianist and occasional soprano saxophonist Steve McGarvie, depping bassist Alan Smith, and award winning drummer Stephen Fletcher. The set highlight (hopefully the guys in the band won’t take offence!) featured Beth Roberts on Tadd Dameron’s Lady Bird. Standing her ground between the frontline duo of Eland and Thompson, the young altoist continues to find something in the tune, finding her way around it with increasing confidence. Roberts departed to resume door duties and organise the all important raffle!

The Jazztones’ second set spanned the generations – the quintet firing on Lee Morgan’s Tom Cat, veteran Pearce joining the band on Out of Nowhere (McGarvie on soprano), and the return of Beth Roberts to play Blue Bossa (Eland content to leave the stage to the young altoist). Darlington Jazz Club’s year round sessions present numerous regional musicians and occasional out-of-towners. A procession of emerging musicians gigged at the Quakerhouse (and other venues) including Square One guitarist Joe Williamson, Will Howard, reeds, Leeds College of Music undergraduate drummer Abbie Finn (heard recently at the Quakerhouse), and the Bakers (Amy, the Jazztones’ regular bass player and brother Alex, reeds). To close the Jazztones’ set Beth Roberts rejoined the band to play Freddie Hubbard’s Red Clay. Our altoist took a first solo, laying down a marker. Eland, Thompson and co did their best to keep up. The next Darlington Jazz Club gig is a young musicians’ jam night at the Quakerhouse on Sunday 28 May. Six o’clock start, recommended. 
Russell.

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