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Bebop Spoken There

Camila Meza: "Some tonalities or chords are colors to me: G major is blue, D major is orange and B minor is totally yellow." - (DownBeat July 2019)

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Today Sunday June 16

Birthday wishes to Steve H.

Afternoon

Jazz

Vieux Carré Hot 4 - Spanish City, Spanish City Plaza, Whitley Bay NE26 1BG. 12 noon. Free.

Musicians Unlimited - Park Inn, Park Road, Hartlepool TS26 9HU. Tel: 01429 233126. 1:00pm (doors 12 noon). Free.

Alice Grace & Ben Helm - Bonbar, Fenkle St., Newcastle NE1 5XU. Tel: 0191 232 8695. 1:30pm.

Jazz Social - Charts, Quayside, Newcastle NE1 3DX. Tel: 0191 338 7989. 4:00pm. Free.

Blues/Funk/Soul

The Panthers - Billy Bootleggers, Nelson St, Newcastle NE1 5AN. 3:00pm. Free.

Sour Mash Trio - The Schooner, South Shore Road, Gateshead NE8 3AF. 5:00pm. Free.

Evening

Customs House Big Band - Customs House, Mill Dam, South Shields NE33 1ES. Tel: 0191 454 1234. 6:00pm. £13.00. ‘Swing on a Summer’s Evening’. The band’s 20th anniversary concert.

East Coast Jazz Jam - The Exchange, Howard Street, North Shields NE30 1SE. Tel: 0191 258 4111. 6:00pm. Free.

Gerry Richardson Quartet - The Globe, Railway Street, Newcastle NE4 7AD. 7:30pm. £6.00. ( (£3.00. student).

DU Jazz Soc jam session - Fabio’s Bar, Saddler St, Durham DH13NP. Tel: 0191 383 9290. 7:30pm. Free.

Francis Tulip Quartet - Black Bull, Bridge Street, Blaydon NE21 4JJ. Tel: 0191 414 2846. 7:30pm. £7.00. Line-up: Francis Tulip (guitar); Ben Lawrence (piano); John Pope (bass); Matt MacKellar (drums)

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

Friday, June 16, 2017

CD Review: Stanton Moore - With You in Mind, the Songs of Allen Toussaint.

Stanton Moore (drums); David ‘Tork’ Torkanowsky (keys); James Singleton (bass) + Trombone Shorty; Nicholas Payton; Donald Harrison; Maceo Parker;  Jolyanda Kiki Chapman; Cyril Neville; Wendell Pierce.
Lance: I could write at length and wax eloquent but the press release says it all and, on this occasion, the press release doesn’t lie. An album that defies genre but pays tribute to one of New Orleans’ greatest musicians of the latter part of the twentieth century and beyond – Allen Toussaint.
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(Press release).
Toussaint’s sudden death on November 10, 2015 (in Madrid, far from home, of a heart attack, after playing a concert) shocked New Orleans. The polymath producer, songwriter, arranger, bandleader, pianist, singer, and all-around figure of elegance had been a vital, active presence in New Orleans since the 1950s.
Moore, Torkanowsky and Singleton immediately shelved a planned album and went into creative hyper drive. “We already had studio time booked, we couldn’t wait,” Moore recalls. “It’s not like we wrote out all these arrangements ahead of time. We were flying by the seat of our pants.” 
As they began working up pieces from Toussaint’s vast repertoire, it quickly became a vocal album with guest singers. “As Tork likes to say,” Moore comments, “being a musician in New Orleans is like having the greatest musical toolbox at your disposal.” Supplementing their trio with some of New Orleans’s living legends – their friends -- they reimagined Toussaint’s songs, conceptualizing and building out an album on the fly. 
It was Torkanowsky who brought in the first guest vocalist, Jolynda Kiki Chapman, best known in New Orleans for singing with her mother, Topsy Chapman. She delivers perhaps the most straightforward performance on the album: Toussaint’s tender ballad “All These Things.” “The first time I heard her sing was when we were tracking,” Moore says.  “The hair on my arms stood up. I took it home and played it for my girlfriend and she burst into tears.” The record was under way.
New Orleans music doesn’t recognize genre boundaries, so With You In Mind crosses effortlessly from funk to jazz and back. Two of New Orleans’s most eminent jazz thinkers, Nicholas Payton and Donald Harrison, appear on two instrumentals. The first is a version of “Java,” which became a top-5 hit for Al Hirt in 1963 and the other is “Riverboat,” Toussaint’s 1960 record with Lee Dorsey (which also doubles as an homage to the session’s original drummer, one of Moore’s heroes, James Black). 
They called in Cyril Neville to sing a song. “It turned into him singing four songs,” laughs Moore, “plus one as a spoken-word performance.” Neville kicks off the album with “Here Come the Girls,” with the added muscle of the musicians’ longtime colleague Trombone Shorty, the former child prodigy who is now a marquee attraction all over the world. Neville gamely sings one of Toussaint’s best-known numbers, “Life,” in 7/8 (James Singleton’s idea). Inspired by that, Moore put the 1969 Lee Dorsey classic “Everything I Do Gone Be Funky (From Now On)” into 5/4 (It was Tork, says Moore, who figured out how to make “fun-ky” line up on the 1). And Neville’s version of “Night People” features an alto solo by funk legend Maceo Parker.
But then they did something altogether new. “Tork said, ‘there’s this book of poetry that Allen wrote.’ We got a copy from Reggie Toussaint, Allen’s son. It’s just a little thin book of poetry -- a lot of it was different re-workings of some of his lyrics – but we found one, ‘The Beat,’ which he hadn’t recorded.” Cyril Neville pronounced the poetry virtuosically, with a characteristically funky musicality.
The album’s striking closer is another spoken-word number. Possibly the most experimental piece on the album, it’s also comfort music: a completely unexpected version of “Southern Nights,” a #1 hit in 1977 for Glen Campbell and a cornerstone of Toussaint’s own concerts. The catalyst for this number was Nicholas Payton, who’s doing compelling work these days in shows where he plays both trumpet and keys, sometimes at the same time.  And after it was recorded, Tork said, ‘what would be cool would be to get Wendell Pierce.’ “I was like, ‘uh, okay, I dunno.’ I thought it was a wacky idea at first, but it turned out to be a great idea.”
With You in Mind: The Songs of Allen Toussaint is built on the livest grooves the trio could deliver. It was a bittersweet project for all concerned, celebrating the memory of someone whose living presence was so important. “I didn’t get to work with Allen as often as I’d have liked to,” Moore says, “but I did get to.” Their friendship went back twenty years. Through the years we crossed paths a few times. The first time he played with us was also the first time we played the Saenger Theater,” referring to the 2,600-seat New Orleans landmark.
“Allen Toussaint wrote the soundtrack to New Orleans,” says Moore. “He came out of an environment that no longer exists. The level of talent and ability and artistry that he embodied – we won’t see this again.” 

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