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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.

Friday, September 15, 2017

The Safe Sextet with Debra Milne @ The Globe September 14

Debra Milne (vocals); Don Forbes (trumpet); John Rowland (tenor sax); Steve Summers (various saxes); Joel Brown (piano); Paul Grainger (bass); Mark Robertson (drums)
(Review by Ann Alex)
A stonkingly good night of jazz, which could even be an ‘I was there’ occasion for at least 2 reasons:-
Joel Brown, depping for Alan Law, gave a stunning performance on the keys, which made me wonder if he’s lying about his age. His lively, inventive, performance matched that of the other musicians, who must surely be 30 years (ahem!) or so his senior. And we witnessed the first performance of a new tune in the making, as Don gave out scores which were the basis of a tune which played out initially as a slow steady trumpet, with each instrument gradually picking it up and culminating with a slow bass solo. I think Don said it was called Silence and it was somehow connected with John Cage, but Don was giving lots of entertaining chat anyway.
It was the first time that Debra [Milne] had sung with this band and she did well with some very difficult material, even singing her own lyrics (Relax) to the slinky tune Killer Joe. Debra has talent as a lyricist and it will be good to hear more of her writing in the future. But all this was in the second set, I’m ahead of myself. The band opened with Wayne Shorter’s One by One, a delightfully boppy, jagged number, followed by a piece rarely played Israel, and the soloists well under way, horns playing as if they were in love with the tune, trumpet in charge (sort of) and the piano soon showing what it could do. Then a number which was written by a tenor player with the Basie band, didn’t catch the name, but it involved a dual between drums and trumpet, after Don stood up to call the drums into extra action – such fun. Enter Debra to sing Jumping With Symphony Sid (Lester Young) and Bluesology. Jumping had a vocalese written by the great Georgie Fame and both songs were Don’s arrangements. Then came Coltrane’s Equinox (I’d kill to get the chance to sing this song with a band), with a combined solo from piano, bass and drums.

Other second set numbers included Hocus Pocus, after which Don told us about how American trumpet player Lee Morgan had been shot dead by an ex girlfriend during a gig, so the chat was historically informative, then a Horace Silver composition with a superb solo from Joel. So What included lyrics, something about Miles Davis leaving the stage, and Four had Debra evolving into some scat. The never-played-before-Don Forbes original was followed by Scotch And Water, fast solos, Debra scatting 4’s with the tenor, a bass solo with brief comments from the piano, and a final statement from the trumpet, which seemed like the right ending to a great night of beboppy jazz.

Next week at the Globe promises to be memorable. If you fancy yourself as a song writer, a course for this begins on Monday at 7pm. If you like folk music as well as jazz, there’s an outstanding new band on Friday, Pons Aelius, which includes highland pipes, bass and rhythm from bodhran and cymbals, exciting stuff. Then this Sunday (Sept. 17) at noon, you can hear vintage jazz, how it all began, with Emily Bacon’s Good Time Gang, and you can have food with the music, gumbo and jambalaya.
I think I’ll move my bed into the Globe for the next week!
Ann Alex  

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