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Bebop Spoken There

Tineke Postma: “ I had a huge crush on him [Sting] when I was a teenager ". Jazzwise, June 2024.

The Things They Say!

Hudson Music: Lance's "Bebop Spoken Here" is one of the heaviest and most influential jazz blogs in the UK.

Rupert Burley (Dynamic Agency): "BSH just goes from strength to strength".

'606' Club: "A toast to Lance Liddle of the terrific jazz blog 'Bebop Spoken Here'"

The Strictly Smokin' Big Band included Be Bop Spoken Here (sic) in their 5 Favourite Jazz Blogs.

Ann Braithwaite (Braithwaite & Katz Communications) You’re the BEST!

Holly Cooper, Mouthpiece Music: "Lance writes pull quotes like no one else!"

Simon Spillett: A lovely review from the dean of jazz bloggers, Lance Liddle...

Josh Weir: I love the writing on bebop spoken here... I think the work you are doing is amazing.

Postage

16462 (and counting) posts since we started blogging 16 years ago. 342 of them this year alone and, so far, 54 this month (May 18).

From This Moment On ...

May

Tue 21: Jam session @ The Black Swan, Newcastle. 7:30pm. Free. House trio: Alan Law, Paul Grainger, John Bradford.

Wed 22: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm. Free.
Wed 22: Alice Grace Vocal Masterclass @ The Glasshouse, Gateshead. 6:00pm. Free.
Wed 22: Darlington Big Band @ Darlington & Simpson Rolling Mills Social Club, Darlington. 7:00pm. Free. Rehearsal session (open to the public).
Wed 22: Take it to the Bridge @ The Globe, Newcastle. 7:30pm. Free.
Wed 22: Daniel Erdmann’s Thérapie de Couple @ The Glasshouse, Gateshead. 8:00pm.

Thu 23: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ The Holystone, Whitley Road, North Tyneside. 1:00pm. Free.
Thu 23: Gateshead Jazz Appreciation Society @ Gateshead Central Library, Gateshead. 2:30pm.
Thu 23: Castillo Nuevo Trio @ Revoluçion de Cuba, Newcastle. 5:30pm. Free.
Thu 23: Immortal Onion + Rivkala @ Cobalt Studios, Newcastle. 7:00pm.
Thu 23: Tees Hot Club @ Dorman’s Club, Middlesbrough. 8:30pm. Guests: Jeremy McMurray (keys); Dan Johnson (tenor sax); Donna Hewitt (alto sax); Bill Watson (trumpet); Adrian Beadnell (bass).

Fri 24: Hot Club du Nord @ The Gala, Durham. 1:00pm. £8.00. SOLD OUT!
Fri 24: Classic Swing @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm. Free.
Fri 24: Rendezvous Jazz @ The Monkseaton Arms. 1:00pm. Free.
Fri 24: New Orleans Preservation Jazz Band @ The Oxbridge Hotel, Stockton. 1:00pm. £5.00.
Fri 24: Swannek + support @ Hoochie Coochie, Newcastle. Time TBC.

Sat 25: Tyne Valley Big Band @ Bywell Hall, Stocksfield. 2:30pm.
Sat 25: Paul Edis Trio w. Bruce Adams & Alan Barnes @ Queen’s Hall, Hexham. 6:30pm. A Northumberland Jazz Festival event.
Sat 25: Nubiyan Twist @ The Glasshouse, Gateshead. 8:00pm.
Sat 25: Papa G’s Troves @ Prohibition Bar, Newcastle. 8:00pm. A ‘Jar on the Bar’ gig.

Sun 26: Tyne Valley Youth Big Band @ The Sele, Hexham. 12:30pm. Free. A Northumberland Jazz Festival event.
Sun 26: Musicians Unlimited @ Jackson’s Wharf, Hartlepool. 1:00pm. Free.
Sun 26: Alice Grace @ The Sele, Hexham. 1:30pm. Free. Alice Grace w. Joe Steels, Paul Susans & John Hirst.
Sun 26: Bryony Jarman-Pinto @ Queen’s Hall, Hexham. 3:00pm. A Northumberland Jazz Festival event.
Sun 26: Ruth Lambert Trio @ The Juke Shed, North Shields. 3:00pm. Free.
Sun 26: 4B @ The Ticket Office, Whitley Bay. 3:00pm. Free.
Sun 26: Clark Tracey Quintet @ Queen’s Hall, Hexham. 6:00pm. A Northumberland Jazz Festival event.
Sun 26: Saltburn Big Band @ Saltburn Community Hall. 7:30pm.
Sun 26: Ruth Lambert Quartet @ The Globe, Newcastle. 8:00pm.
Sun 26: SARÃB @ The Glasshouse, Gateshead. 8:00pm.

Mon 27: Harmony Brass @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm. Free.

Saturday, October 21, 2017

XPQ @ Opus 4, Darlington - October 20

Vasilis Xenopoulos (tenor saxophone), Nigel Price (guitar), Paul Edis (piano), Paul Susans (double bass) & Russ Morgan (drums)
(Review by Russell)
A Friday night in mid-October sees all and sundry heading to the Traveller’s Rest in Cockerton. What’s the occasion? The annual visit of Vasilis Xenopoulos, that’s what! As they queued down the stairs, drinks in hand, a voice said: It’s a tenner tonight. Another replied: I’d pay thirty quid tonight. Such is Vasilis Xenopoulos’ reputation that an increase in the usual admission price didn’t deter the faithful.
An added attraction at this Darlington Opus 4 Jazz Club gig took the form of the brilliant guitarist Mr Nigel Price. Add in the best piano trio around – Messrs Paul Edis, Paul Susans and Russ Morgan – and it had all the makings of a memorable occasion. XPQ are Vasilis Xenopoulos, Nigel Price and, on this gig, the aforementioned A-list rhythm section.
On June 21st Xenopoulos and Price went into the studio to record material associated with several of the great saxophone/guitar partnerships in jazz history. The album Sidekicks (review to follow) is the result of their endeavours, and here at Opus 4 not only was the physical product (CD) available to buy hot off the press, the evening’s two sets featured cuts from it! 
 The London-based headliners had some of the jazz greats listening in on the gig (see photo) as the quintet opened with Vincent Youmans’ Without a Song (Sonny Rollins-Jim Hall, 1962). Nigel Price (NP) took the first solo. Gargantuan it was, simple as. Vasilis Xenopoulos (VX) replied, big style! This 52nd Street gig (Opus 4/52nd Street – same thing!) couldn’t have got off to a better start. Cheering fans, of a certain age, in the upstairs room of a suburban Darlington pub, hard to believe, but true. And this established the pattern for the evening.

The Right Time (Geoff Simkins-Dave Cliff, comp. Dave Cliff) heard VX in swinging, bluesy mode. A strange thing happened…more cheering! O Pato (Stan Getz-Charlie Byrd), an Edis solo feature on  When Joanna Loved Me (Paul Desmond-Jim Hall) reminded all present that this was an A-list five-piece outfit…cue cheering. A searing tempo on Ready and Able (Ronnie Cuber-George Benson) is something else to listen to, what must it be like to play it? The cookin’ rhythm section – Edis, Paul Susans and Russ Morgan – more than matched VX and NP. More cheering.

The interval – phew! A refill (Theakston’s Black Bull – more on this later). The unanimous view was it had been an unbelievable first set. Seasoned musicians in the audience were fulsome in praising XPQ.

John Coltrane-Kenny Burrell to resume. Lyresto started where we left off with more cheering as the A-list rhythm section took a few bars as an imperious piano trio. Uh Huh fuelled greater excitement as VX booted, honked and swung his way through the Grant Green-Hank Mobley showstopper. NP had his say with shuffle-rhythm accompaniment before ceding to a Paul Edis piano solo which VX offered enthusiastic encouragement urging his friend from their days working together in London to play on. Yep, more hollering!

Nigel Price revealed that at one time Wes Montgomery was his mobile ringtone! Full House tore it up with solos all round. From Johnny Griffin-Wes Montgomery to more homegrown jazz talent with a hear-felt tribute to a now well again Jim Mullen. Price said: This goes out to Jim Mullen, adding and he’s back with a vengeance! From one guitarist to another, Price led XPQ on Mal Waldron’s Soul Eyes (Dick Morrissey-Jim Mullen). Shirley Scott’s Ladyfingers trained the spotlight on Stanley Turrentine-Kenny Burrell. Solos all round, Paul Susans excelling. It was almost time to go. Vasilis Xenopoulos suggested one for the road. Sonny Rollins’ If Ever I Would Leave You from What’s New? is where we came in – Sonny Rollins-Jim Hall. Yet more astounding solos (VX briefly quoting St Thomas) with the exceptional Russ Morgan, drums, taking it home.

XPQ at Opus 4 Jazz Club is currently top of your reviewer’s Gig of the Year list. And you’re thinking Damn! I missed it! Well, my earlier mention of Theakston’s Black Bull serves as a reminder. Tomorrow night (Sunday 22) they’re going to do it all over again at the Black Bull on Bridge Street in Blaydon. No excuses, all roads (Sat Navs) lead to NE21 4JJ. Eight o’clock start, a tenner on the door. Arrive early to claim a seat, it’s going to be busy. Gig of the Year MKII.                              
Russell

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