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Bebop Spoken There

Frank Zappa: "There was so much acid during the '60s that it was very easy for large numbers of people to think they had seen God as soon as the Beatles went boom, boom, boom, you know?." - (DownBeat May 18, 1978). – (DownBeat May 18, 1978).

Ryan Keberle: “Don't be easy on yourself when it comes to playing with perfect intonation. All other instruments will be playing with close-to-perfect intonation; the same should be expected of trombonists.'” – (DownBeat April 2018)

Today Thursday March 22


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

Higher Education & Research Presents: Future Grooves - Sage Gateshead. 12 noon. £5.00. Showcase performances by BMus & BA degree course students featuring jazz and non-jazz sets.

Tees Valley Jazzmen - White Horse Hotel, Burtree Lane, Harrowgate Hill, Darlington DL1 3AD. Tel: 01325 463262. 1:30pm. Free.


MGB: Milne Glendinning Band - The Globe, Railway Street, Newcastle NE4 7AD. 7:30pm. £5.00. Milne, Glendinning, Katy Trigger (bass) & Nik Alevroyiannis (drums).

BABMUS @ Jazz Café, Pink Lane, Newcastle NE1 5DW. 8:00pm. £3.00. (£2.00. students/MU).

Rob Heron & the Tea Pad Orchestra - St Cuthbert’s Centre, Church Hill, Crook DL15 9DN. Tel: 01388 765002. 7:30pm. £7.50., £5.00. child, £20.00. family.

Higher Education & Research Presents: Future Grooves - Sage Gateshead. 7:30pm. £5.00. Showcase performances by BMus & BA degree course students featuring jazz and non-jazz sets.

Ada Francis & the Italic Quartet - Las Iguanas, Grey Street, Newcastle NE1 6AF. Tel: 0191 232 9729. 7:30pm. Fortnightly restaurant residency. Line-up: Ada Francis (vocals); Jimmy Jefford (tenor saxophone); Ben Richardson (piano); Luke Gaul (bass) & Harry Still (drums).

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

Maine Street Jazzmen - Potter’s Wheel, Sunniside, Gateshead NE16 5EE. Tel: 0191 488 8068. 8:30pm. Free.

Tees Hot Club w. Gus Smith (vocal); Richie Emmerson (tenor); Bruce Taylor (keys) - Dorman’s Club, Oxford Road, Middlesbrough TS5 5DT. Tel: 01642 823813. 9pm. Free.

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

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

CD Review: Katie Thiroux – Off Beat.

Katie Thiroux (double bass/ vocals); Ken Peplowski (clarinet/tenor); Roger Neumann (tenor/ soprano); Justin Kauflin (piano); Matt Witek (drums.)
(Review by Dave Brownlow)
Katie Thiroux, a young bassist/vocalist already has an impressive musical background. On her CV is a degree from Berklee College of Music and a master's from California State University. Since then, she has worked with such fine musicians as Billy Taylor, Branford Marsalis, Bill Cunliffe, Geri Allen, Charles McPherson, Ken Peplowski, Mundell Lowe, Teri Lynne Carrington, Lewis Nash, Jeff Hamilton and many others. This is a follow-up album to her debut CD (Introducing Katie Thiroux 2015) and is thoroughly enjoyable, entertaining, swinging, uncomplicated yet sophisticated, full of variety and the essence of jazz “the sound of surprise.”
The programme Katie has chosen utilises the talents of her four musicians to the full with clever choices of accompaniment for each track. How refreshing it is to hear Peplowski’s clarinet featured on three pieces – it reminds me of Art Pepper’s occasional clarinet forays.
Off Beat uses Neumann’s quirky arrangement for an unusual front-line of clarinet and soprano sax. The song, made famous by June Christy, is a lively opener, swingingly anchored by Katie’s propulsive bass. Benny Carter’s smooth, mid-tempo When Lights Are Low has the piano-led trio as backing with a pleasant keyboard solo from Kauflin. The vocal is suitably sultry……..
Thiroux lays down her bass for a beautiful Why Did I Choose You with only piano support for this emotional ballad. Slow Dance With Me - a Thiroux original – is a bluesy instrumental which grooves along and includes a bass solo from the leader. She gets a round, warm tone from the bass and has ‘spot-on’ intonation coupled with a good ear for note choice throughout.
Master Bassist Ray Brown’s influence shows on the next three tracks. A ‘gospel style’ Brotherhood Of Man rides along cheerfully and includes another nimble solo from the bass. Ray’s Idea, from the early days of bebop and Dizzy’s Big Band, showcases a ‘scat’ vocal, a few bright choruses from the clarinet and ‘fours’ with drummer Witek.
A ‘sultry’ Some Cats Know has Peplowski on tenor and a sexy “knowing” vocal from Katie…..The rarely heard When The Wind Was Green (a Sinatra track from ’65) has the vocal supported by only clarinet and bass. A fine obbligato from Ken provides one of the high spots of the album. Ellington’s Happy Reunion is a showpiece for the two tenors and is a warm tribute to Duke. Finally, Willow Weep For Me is just Katie – vocal and bass – on a technical tour-de-force which she carries off with great aplomb showing off her talents as a more-than-competent bassist and a maturing vocalist. One detects subtle influences from Blossom Dearie, Norma Winstone and Claire Martin – but it’s chiefly herself!
With swinging basslines, clear vocals and inspired arrangements, Katie combines contemporary flair to mainstream stylings as a rising star in today’s scene.
Off Beat is to be released on August 18, 2017, on Capri Records 74146-2
 Also available on
Dave Brownlow.

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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: I look forward to hearing from you.