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Bebop Spoken There

Willie Jones lll: "I often wondered what it would be like to play with Clifford Brown or Lee Morgan. For me, Roy Hargrove was the closest thing to that." - (JazzTimes, November 2021)

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! --

Postage

13683 (and counting) posts since we started blogging 13 years ago. 1402 of them this year alone and, so far, 18 this month (Dec.5).

From This Moment On ...

December

Wed 08: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.
Wed 08: Darlington Big Band @ Darlington & Simpson Rolling Mills Club, Darlington. 8:00pm. Concert performance. Free admission.
Wed 08: Four @ The Exchange, North Shields. 7:00-9:30pm. In the bar.
Wed 08: Take it to the Bridge @ The Globe, Newcastle. 7:30pm.
Wed 08: Durham Uni Big Band + Durham Uni Jazz Soc Big Band @ Durham University Students' Union. 8:00pm.

Thu 09: Vieux Carré Hot 4 @ Spanish City, Whitley Bay. 12 noon. £22.00. Xmas lunch. Tel: 0191 691 7090.
Thu 09: Hot Club du Nord, Lubetkin Theatre, East Durham College, Peterlee. 7:00pm (doors). £10.00. + bf.
Thu 09: TBC + Knats @ Cobalt Studios, Newcastle. 7:00pm. £7.00. (£10.00. inc food).
Thu 09: Indigo Jazz Voices @ The Globe, Newcastle. 7:30pm.
Thu 09: Maine Street Jazzmen @ Sunniside Social Club, Gateshead. 8:30pm.
Thu 09: Tees Hot Club @ Dorman's Club, Middlesbrough. 9:00pm.

Fri 10: Vieux Carré Hot 4 @ Spanish City, Whitley Bay. 12 noon. £22.00. Xmas lunch. Tel: 0191 691 7090.
Fri 10: Zoë Gilby Trio @ Bishop Auckland Town Hall. 1:00pm.
Fri 10: Classic Swing @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.
Fri 10: New Orleans Preservation Jazz Band @ Oxbridge Hotel, Stockton. 1:00pm.
Fri 10: Rendezvous Jazz @ The Monkseaton Arms, Monkseaton. 1:00pm.
Fri 10: Secret Night Gang @ Hoochie Coochie, Newcastle. 8:00pm.
Fri 10: Jack Logan (replacement for Alter Ego) @ Prohibition Bar, Newcastle. 8:00pm.

Sat 11: Paul Skerritt @ Newcastle Central Station. 11:00am. On the concourse.
Sat 11: Life Drawing & Live Jazz @ Cobalt Studios, Newcastle. 2:00-4:00pm. Lindsay Hannon & Martin Douglas. Book via: www.cobaltstudios.co.uk.
Sat 11: Boys of Brass @ Branding Villa, South Gosforth, Newcastle. 8:00pm.

Sun 12 Vieux Carré Hot 4 @ Spanish City, Whitley Bay. 12 noon.
Sun 12: Musicians Unlimited @ South Durham Social Club, Hartlepool. 1:00pm.
Sun 12: Hot Club du Nord @ Hurworth Grange. 2:30pm. Festive Special! SOLD OUT!
Sun 12: Glenn Miller Orchestra UK @ Stockton Globe. 3:00pm. Ray McVay & co.
Sun 12: Foundry Jazz Ensemble @ The Exchange, North Shields. 3:00pm.
Sun 12: Am Jam @ The Globe, Newcastle. 3:00pm.
Sun 12: Sue Ferris Quintet (Musicians Unlimited’s Xmas Party) @ South Durham Social Club, Hartlepool. 4:00pm. Tickets: £6.00.
Sun 12: Jason Isaacs Big Band @ Hoochie Coochie, Newcastle. 5:00pm.
Sun 12: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ The Holystone, North Tyneside. 7:00pm.
Sun 12: Larry’s Brass Band @ The Vigilant Inn, South Shields. 7:00pm. Free. Brass band playing Xmas tunes!
Sun 12: corto.alto @ The Cluny, Newcastle. 8:00pm.
Sun 12: Under the Surface @ The Globe, Newcastle. 8:00pm. £10.00 adv., £12.00. door.

Mon 13: Jazz in the Afternoon @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.
Mon 13: 6th Street Swing w Calvert & the Old Fools @ St Thomas Aquinas’ Church, Darlington. 7:00pm. £5.00. Swing dance (‘social dancing’) night.
Mon 13: Stuart Fowler Quintet plays Art Blakey’s album Moanin’ + jam session @ Central Bar, Gateshead. 7:30pm. £5.00.

Tue 14: Harry Keeble & Friends @ Forum Music Centre, Darlington. 7:30pm. Keeble (tenor sax); Dean Stockdale (keyboards); Paul Grainger (bass); John Bradford (drums).

Friday, November 24, 2017

The BBC Big Band: Swing Legends @ Middlesbrough Theatre - November 22

(Review by Russell)
The BBC Big Band made a rare visit to the region to play a concert at Middlesbrough Theatre with vocalist Jeff Hooper as special guest. As a full house took its seats a star-studded line-up ambled out onto stage bang on time…professional from beginning to end. The BBC’s Big Band Special is long gone from the Radio 2 schedules but the orchestra continues to defy the odds with a concert diary stretching into next year.
Les Brown’s Leap Frog opened the show and the first, albeit brief, soloist to stand up (there was a lot of standing up and sitting down and standing up as a section and sitting down and…) was Paul Booth on tenor. From these parts, well, slightly further north, Booth no doubt felt quite at home. An enthusiastic MD helps, and trooper Barry Forgie is nothing if not enthusiastic about big bands. The evening’s programme ranged across the great big band years and Forgie was keen to tell how the bands back in the day, or rather the band leaders, made small fortunes playing to packed dances, the next big selling 78 eagerly awaited by their adoring public.

Artie Shaw…Begin the Beguine (rec.1938), looking around the auditorium it appeared that one or two members of the audience could have been there first time around! And, what’s more, a dark, drizzly Middlesbrough November evening wasn’t going keep them at home. The trumpet section’s star man Martin Shaw made his way down to front of stage for a flugelhorn feature on Strayhorn’s  Lush Life. As with most of the band, Shaw was making a 600 miles round trip to play on Teesside, and this kind of made it all worthwhile. MD Forgie reckoned Terry Gibbs’ big band was something special, at this point introducing the BBC Big Band’s ‘secret weapon’ Mr Anthony Kerr. Something up tempo? Try Sweet Georgia Brown.

Time for a song. Welcome Mr Jeff Hooper. You know the routine…suave, debonair, this is Vegas, after all. Mack the Knife. One of life’s mysteries…how do vocalists remember the lyrics of this odd, faintly ridiculous, but ever-popular number? No such problems for Hooper, managing to reference the, by now, swinging BBC Big Band. The band motoring, Hooper didn’t miss a beat. Time to take it down a notch; I’ve Got You Under My Skin with Kieran McLeod’s spot on trombone blast, Nancy with the Laughing Face and more.  

Let’s have some Harry James. Vibes man Kerr featured, as did the killing trumpet section, on The Mole. Then some Tommy Dorsey (Opus One), Jimmie Lunceford (For Dancers Only), MD Forgie asked if we were dancing? Not exactly, more a toe-tapping shuffle. Aye, those were the days!

Hard liquor passed few lips during the interval, more like a hard-living choc ice (what the band got up to backstage is another matter!).

Quincey Jones’ arrangement of For Lena and Lennie for the Basie band reintroduced Anthony Kerr with a muted Martin Shaw featuring once again. A set-piece affair brought tenor men Julian Siegel and Paul Booth to front of stage to slug it out Herman’s Herd style on Hallelujah Time. An absolute blast! Phew! Ding! Ding! Break! Our pugilists returned to their cornermen (reeds’ section) Smiles, a score draw. There’ll be a rematch and when it happens, make sure you’re ringside.*  

The BBC Big Band’s pad is probably as comprehensive as any and MD Barry Forgie plucked from it Mood Indigo featuring the latter day Harry Carney, baritone saxophonist Adrian Wilkinson, and a further beautifully executed trumpet part by Martin Shaw. One O’Clock Jump bounded towards the finishing line with one final blast awaiting. Drummer Tom Gordon, a tower of strength throughout, brought the show to a thunderous close with an extended, exhausting solo on Sing, Sing, Sing.          Russell    
                      
*The BBC Big Band will be in concert at Darlington Hippodrome (formerly Darlington Civic Theatre)  on April 10th next year. There is no guarantee Messrs Siegel and Booth will be there, after all, they are very busy musicians, but you wouldn’t want to miss a rematch, would you? Telephone the box office now: 01325 405405.                 

Barry Forgie MD; Jeff Hooper (vocals); Euan Mayne, Danny Marsden, George ?, Martin Shaw (trumpets); Kieran McLeod, Liam Kirkman, Ashley Horton, Peter North (trombones); Julian Siegel, Paul Booth, Alan Barnes, Steve ?, Adrian Wilkinson (reeds); Anthony Kerr (vibes); Robin Aspland (piano); Nick Walsh (double bass); Tom Gordon (drums).  


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