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Bebop Spoken There

Vadim Neselovskyi, Professor of Jazz Piano, Berklee College of Music: “Every pianist has to deal with a very complex left-hand part at some point. This is the essential pianistic experience – to split your brain into two halves and execute two very different tasks at the same time.” – (Down Beat September 2017).

Roscoe Mitchell: “To me, improvisation is trying to improve your skills so you can make these on-point compositional decisions. That takes practice.” – (Down Beat September 2017)

Archives

Today Friday September 22

Scarborough Jazz Festival - Day one of three.
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Afternoon
Rendezvous Jazz - The Black Horse, Front St., Monkseaton, Whitley Bay NE25 8DP. 1pm. Free.
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Zoe Gilby Quartet - Town Hall, Market Place, Bishop Auckland DL14 7NP. 1pm. £5.
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Evening
Kentucky Cowtippers - Billy Bootleggers, 28 Nelson St., Newcastle NE1 5AN. 9pm. Free.
Sean Noonan: Memorable Sticks - Jazz Café, 25 Pink Lane, Newcastle NE1 5DW. 8pm. £8/£6.
Backyard Rhythm Orchestra + Monkey Puzzle - o2 Academy, Newcastle. Doors 6:30pm. Curfew 10pm.
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Dave Newton & Dean Stockdale - Traveller's Rest, 2 West Auckland Rd., Cockerton, Darlington DL3 9ER. 8:30pm. £10.
Smokin' Spitfires - Forum Music Centre, Borough Rd., Darlington DL1 1SG. 7:30pm. £10.
Steve Bone - Al Forno, 81 Skinnergate, Darlington DL3 7LX. 7pm.
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To the best of our knowledge, details of the above events are correct but may be subject to alteration.

Monday, June 19, 2017

James Birkett & Bradley Johnston @ Blaydon Jazz Club - June 18

James Birkett (guitar) & Bradley Johnston (guitar)
(Review by Russell/Photos courtesy of Roly Veitch)
Doors leading to the Black Bull’s beer garden were open all evening in a futile attempt to circulate fresh air through the lounge. The air stilled, nothing was moving. This month’s jazz concert drew a good crowd, with many of those present no doubt aware that Blaydon Jazz Club had recently lost one of its most loyal supporters with the passing of Margaret Barnes. The guitar duo of Dr James Birkett and Bradley Johnston expressed their admiration for Margaret, known to all as a keen jazz fan, and, quite simply, a very nice lady.
Our duo began with Black Orpheus. Birkett’s Blues for BJ (for his six string partner), then a Lonnie Johnson/Eddie Lang classic – Blue Room – set the highest of standards. The Birkett-Johnston duo began as a master and pupil arrangement. Now, Johnston, the 1st Class Honours graduate, is the equal partner in this musical relationship. Luiz Bonfá’s Uma Prece held the audience spellbound, a magical All the Things You Are, and as Birkett suggested, the Gershwin’s Someone to Watch Over Me an appropriate tune for us to remember Margaret, this was jazz guitar playing par excellence.
A bumper raffle (no fewer than nine prizes), a Deuchar’s glass replenished, the still, balmy evening encouraged all present to listen intently to our magicians – Messrs Birkett and Johnston – at work. Jobim’s Wave, Metheny’s Farmer’s Market (there had to be a Metheny number!), Doxy – a familiar set list perhaps, yet this concert performance exceeded expectations. The arrangements, changes, solos, everything about the evening just seemed right. John Lewis’ Skating in Central Park, elegant to the last, a brilliant – yet not too quick! – Cherokee, Johnston’s James’ Waltz (for you know who), this Blaydon Jazz Club presentation will live long in the memory. To close, the duo’s party piece –  Chick Corea’s Spain. Long fuse, light the blue touch paper, slow burn, stand back, wait, watch the fireworks. It works every time. Encore…Bacharach’s Alfie. A memorable evening at Blaydon Jazz Club. Margaret would have loved it.
Russell
All proceeds from the evening will be donated in memory of Margaret Barnes to Marie Curie Cancer Care.                                 

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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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