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Bebop Spoken There

David Binney: "In this age, we musicians need to do anything we can to make a living, and ninety-nine percent of us will have to do a wide variety of things." - (Jazz Times May 2019)

Archive

Daily: July 6 - October 27

Precarity John Akomfrah’s film (2017, 46 mins) about Buddy Bolden - Baltic Centre for Contemporary Art, Gateshead Quays, South Shore Road, Gateshead NE8 3BA. Tel: 0191 478 1810. Screenings at intervals during the day. part of Akomfrah's exhibition Ballasts of Memory. Exhibition (daily) July 6 - October 27. 10:00am-6:00pm. Free.

Until July 21

Today Tuesday July 16

Afternoon

Jazz

Precarity John Akomfrah’s film (2017, 46 mins) about Buddy Bolden. See above.

Classic Swing - The Ship Inn, Front Street, Monkseaton NE25 8DP. 0191 251 3677. 1:00pm. Free.

Evening

Jazz

Gala Big Band w. ALAN BARNES: Strictly Come BRASSing - Gala Theatre, Millennium Place, Durham DH1 1WA. Tel: 03000 266 600. 7:30pm. £15.00. (£12.00. concs.). A Durham Brass Festival event.

River City Jazzmen - Block & Tackle, Blackthorn Way, Ashington NE63 8NW. Tel: 01670 813983 (info). 8:00pm. £5.00. (inc. raffle). RCJ with Don Armstrong (clarinet, saxophone, penny whistle, vocals).

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SOLD OUT!

Zoe Rahman & Laura MacDonald - Lit & Phil, Westgate Road, Newcastle NE1 1SE. Tel: 0191 232 0192.. 8:00pm. £12.00. (£10.00. concs.). JNE.

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Northern Monkey Brass Band - Fox Inn, West End Terrace, Hexham NE46 3DB.Tel: 01434 603681. 8:30pm. Free (donations).

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

Wednesday, October 04, 2017

Three by Three a Feast of Trios @ The Bridge Hotel October 1

(Review by Steve H/Photos courtesy of Ken Drew). 
The final concert of the inaugural Newcastle Festival of Jazz and Improvisation was yet another sell out and by that I mean the ‘house full’ signs could be put out rather than that the musical integrity of the festival had been compromised. What a great weekend it had been an A to Z (Archipelago – to Zoe Rahman) of artists be they local, national or international. Great credit must be given to all involved but an extra special tribute should be paid to programme director Wesley Stephenson who not only dreamt up the whole idea but was actually able to deliver the project with such unprecedented success.  
The three trios played, to a great or lesser extent, something I would call chamber jazz and reminded me at times of the wonderful Bartok String Quartets.
The first trio up Musson, Kjaer & Marshall played in a fairly minimalist style and improvised around one another seamlessly. The music demanded 100% attention and the packed audience remained respectfully silent throughout which, given its size, was most impressive. A great start to the evening
After a short break Jurd, Kjaer & ‘Leafcutter’ John took to the stage. The ‘Leafcutter’ performed on an instrument which looked like it belonged more on the bridge of the Starship Enterprise rather than on the upstairs floor of The Bridge Hotel Newcastle. To the naked eye it appeared that that in each hand a crystal orb was being held and by moving the two orbs towards and away from a computer of some sort a marvellous concoction of sounds was conjured up with the added bonus of an impromptu light show to boot. I guess you could call it an optical Theremin. Not to be technologically outdone, Jurd used various objects as mutes including a half pint beer glass and an empty crisp packet. Hopefully Kjaer wasn’t feeling too left out and at least she was able to alternate between alto and flute. A very entertaining set indeed.

To complete not only this event but also the entire festival, Barrel stepped up to the plate. My first thoughts were that they appeared to be a classical string quartet minus a violin. However, aside from this obvious difference, the improvisation and the abundant sense of humour the trio displayed emphasised why I find this kind of music so much more enjoyable than straight forward classical chamber music. Every so often Kallin would yelp or chat to his fellow band members in a most humorous fashion yet rather than undermine the performance it seemed to enhance the proceedings adding a light touch to what can be a very intense form of music. A cracking end to an amazing weekend I can’t wait till next year’s festival!
Musson, Kjaer & Marshall: Rachel Musson (tenor sax), Julie Kjaer (alto sax); Hannah Marshall (cello).

Jurd, Kjaer & ‘Leafcutter’ John: Laura Jurd (trumpet); Julie Kjaer (alto sax,flute); ‘Leafcutter’ John (electronics).

Barrel: Alison Blunt (violin); Ivor Kallin (viola); Hannah Marshall (cello).

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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.

Submissions for review

Whilst we appreciate the many emails, texts, messages and other communications we receive requesting album/gig reviews on BSH, regrettably, we are unable to reply to all of them other than those we are able to answer with a positive response.
Similarly, CDs received by post will only be considered if accompanied by sufficient background material.
Finally, bear in mind that this is a jazz-based site when submitting your album.
Lance