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Bebop Spoken There

Guy Barker: "You have to play it [the trumpet] every day or you just won't be match-fit." - (Jazz Rag, Winter 2019.)

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Today Friday December 13

Afternoon

Jazz

Vieux CarréJazzmen - Spanish City, Spanish City Plaza, Whitley Bay NE26 1BG. 12 noon. ‘Christmas Jazz Lunch’. Details from 0191 252 9429).

Dean Stockdale Trio - The Merry Monk, 30 Market Place, Bishop Auckland DL14 7NP. 1:00pm. £5.00.

Rendezvous Jazz - Monkseaton Arms, Front Street, Monkseaton NE25 8DP. Tel: 0191 251 3928. 1:00pm. Free.

Evening.

Jazz

‘An Evening of Swing & Sparkle’ - National Glass Centre, Liberty Way, Sunderland SR6 0GL. Tel: 0191 515 5555. 7:30pm. £35.00. Rat Pack evening inc. 4-course meal.

Strictly Smokin’ Big Band - Gosforth Civic Theatre, Regents Farm Road, Gosforth, Newcastle NE3 3HD. Tel: 0191 284 3700. 8:00pm. £12.00. + bf. First night of two.

Chris Dean's Syd Lawrence Orchestra - Yarm School, Stockton TS15 9EJ. Tel: 01642 786023. 7:30pm (6:30pm doors). £18.00. + £1.80. bf (£15.00. + £1.50. bf). 'Mistletoe & Miller'.

Blues, Funk/Soul etc.

Baghdaddies - Cobalt Studios, Boyd Street, NewcastleNE2 1AP. £10.68 (inc. bf). ‘Big Xmas Knees Up’.

Swamp Hoppers - Billy Bootleggers, Nelson St, Newcastle NE1 5AN. 9pm. Free.

George Shovlin & the Acoustic Radars feat. Pat Rafferty + George Pallas & John Wilkins - Whitburn Cricket Club, East Street, Whitburn SR6 7BZ. Tel: 0191 529 3187. 7:30pm (7:00pm doors). £7.50. admission by ticket only (from www.wegottickets.com). 'The Bents Road Sessions'.

Dead Skunk Skiffle & Blues Orchestra + Stetson Five - Station East, Hills Street, Gateshead NE8 2AN. 8:00pm. Free.

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

Wednesday, December 13, 2017

CD Review: Hugh Masekela – Sixty/Black to the Future/Notes of Life

(Review by Russell)
This three-CD release features Hugh Masekela’s music recorded during the mid to late 1990s. The anti-apartheid movement’s success in securing the release of Nelson Mandela encouraged a three decades’ exiled Masekela to return to South Africa and these albums on Floating World Records, a London-based specialist reissue label, represent an upbeat, celebratory period in a long recording career.
Trumpet, flugelhorn and vocals, composer Hugh Masekela has experienced chart-topping success, the highs of festival and stadium concert performances and a determined life-long political activism. Sixty comprises thirteen tracks; Fela is dedicated to the late Fela Kuti, musician, and fellow political activist. Township and Afrobeat are the life-affirming sounds permeating this and the majority of the thirty-six tracks across the three albums. It would appear that Masekela plays flugelhorn exclusively with the trumpet parts on Black to the Future played by Prince Lengosa – Chileshe and Excuse Me Baby feature Lengosa, Khaya Mahlangu, tenor saxophone, and Jasper Cook, trombone, alongside Masekela’s flugelhorn and vocals.
On several tracks Don Laka is listed as playing ‘all other instruments’ thus identifying him as pianist on several otherwise un-credited piano contributions. Bokone closes Black to the Future seemingly without Masekela, but with effective guitar contributions from Kenny Mathaba and John Selolwane.

The third album – Notes of Life was actually the first of the three to be recorded and it has a soul-jazz feel to it with its soft-focus backing vocals and synth keyboard sounds. Bassist Trevor Gordon, one of four heard on this disc, restrains his fretless jazz bass inclinations on Moments of Love, fine collective vocals take centre stage on Father of Our Nation (comp. H Masekela/Cedric Samson) in praise of Mandela - ‘father of our freedom’ they sing, and the all-too-short salute to Mandela Thank You Madiba brings to a close almost three hours playing time of the music of Hugh Masekela.     
Russell
Sixty/Black to the Future/Notes of Life is available now. 
Visit: www.floatingworldrecords.co.uk               

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