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Bebop Spoken There

Veronica Swift: "I don't want to call myself a jazz singer anymore. I'm a singer and a storyteller.'" - (JazzTimes, December 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

13837 (and counting) posts since we started blogging 13 years ago. 56 of them this year alone and, so far, 56 this month (Jan. 16).

From This Moment On ...

January 2022

Wed 19: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.
Wed 19: Classic Swing @ Venue, Cramlington NE23 6UT. 1:00pm.
Wed 19: Darlington Big Band @ Darlington & Simpson Rolling Mills Club, Darlington. 7:00pm. Rehearsal session (open to the public).
Wed 19: Four @ The Exchange, North Shields. 7:00pm.
Wed 19: Take it to the Bridge @ The Globe, Newcastle. 7:30pm.

Thu 20: Maine Street Jazzmen @ Sunniside Social Club, Gateshead. 8:30pm.
Thu 20: Tees Hot Club @ Dorman's Club, Middlesbrough. 9:00pm.

Fri 21: Emma Fisk & James Birkett @ The Lit & Phil, Newcastle. 1:00pm. POSTPONED!
Fri 21: Classic Swing @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.
Fri 21: New Orleans Preservation Jazz Band @ Oxbridge Hotel, Stockton. 1:00pm.
Fri 21: Rendezvous Jazz @ The Monkseaton Arms, Monkseaton. 1:00pm.
Fri 21: John Law @ Durham Cathedral. 7:30pm. £20.00. POSTPONED!
Fri 21: Dean Stockdale Quartet @ Traveller’s Rest, Darlington. 8:00pm. £8.00. Opus 4 Jazz Club.
Fri 21: Jude Murphy & Dan Stanley @ Prohibition Bar, Newcastle. 8:00pm.

Sat 22: East Coast Swing Band @ East Bedlington Community Centre. 7:30pm. £5.00.
Sat 22: MGB @ Prohibition Bar, Newcastle. 8:00pm. The Milne-Glendinning Band.

Sun 23 Vieux Carré Hot 4 @ Spanish City, Whitley Bay. 12 noon.
Sun 23: Musicians Unlimited @ South Durham Social Club, Hartlepool. 1:00pm.
Sun 23: Foundry Jazz Ensemble @ The Exchange, North Shields. 3:00pm.
Sun 23: More Jam @ The Globe, Newcastle. 3:00pm.
Sun 23: Anth Purdy: Swing Jazz Guitar @ Blues & Bourbon, Newcastle. 3:00pm.
Sun 23: Svarc Hanley Longhawn @ The Globe, Newcastle. 8:00pm. £10.00 adv., £12.00. door.

Mon 24: Jazz in the Afternoon @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.
Mon 24: Vels Trio + Knats @ The Cluny, Newcastle. 8:00pm. POSTPONED!.

Tue 25: East Coast Swing Band @ East Bedlington Community Centre. 10:00am - 12 noon. Rehearsal session (open to the public). .
Tue 25: Jam session @ Black Swan, Newcastle. 7:30pm. House trio: Murray Wankling, Paul Grainger, King David Ike-Elechi.

Monday, December 18, 2017

George MacDonald & James Birkett with the Roly Veitch Trio @ Blaydon Jazz Club - Dec 17

George MacDonald (clarinet), James Birkett (guitar), Roly Veitch (guitar), Paul Grainger (double bass) & David Francis (drums)
(Review by Russell/photos courtesy of Ken Rodham). 
As Humph would have said, Blaydon Jazz Club has been promoting ‘the very best in jazz’ for well over thirty years and the Christmas party’s legendary DIY buffet has long since assumed mythical status. This year’s festive feast more than lived up to expectations and the interval raffle assumed gigantic proportions with numerous prizes on offer. The icing on the Christmas cake was the jazz. It’s the reason fans turn up from one month to the next and the evening’s invited guests – George MacDonald and James Birkett – were making a welcome return visit.

The Black Bull on Bridge Street is a steadfast supporter of the jazz club and the room was set out in advance ready to accommodate the arrival of not only the ‘regulars’ but also a food mountain of sweet and hot seasonal goodies. If there is a more amiable group of musicians than those playing this Christmas party engagement then they are yet to visit Blaydon. Clarinetist George MacDonald is a life-long fan of Benny Goodman and can tell a story or two of the King of Swing’s days touring coast to coast in America. Master guitarist James Birkett is the ideal musical foil for Mr MacDonald, readily adapting to any given situation as the ex-pat Canadian suggests they play such and such. The house rhythm section for the evening, led by Blaydon Jazz Club’s long-serving promoter Roly Veitch, was well acquainted with the numbers in the set list and handled matters with ease; bassist Paul Grainger and drummer David Francis both knowing their way around the GASbook.

The affable MacDonald suggested Summertime and, sure enough, the quintet went for a leisurely stroll and on into autumn playing Joseph Kosma’s Autumn Leaves. Our clarinetist likes a bossa, a Jobim tune was a cert, so we heard Meditation. Gershwin was on the cards, the choice vast, what to play? On this occasion But Not for Me. Time for a blues, MacDonald suggesting ‘in F’. Blues, in a mellow tone, with Roly Veitch laying down a fine solo, followed by his friend and fellow guitarist, James Birkett crafting another exquisite solo. Mr MacDonald always listens to his fellow musicians, appreciative of their contribution, and at Dr Birkett’s suggestion, closed the first set with their ‘wild’ version (when the mood takes them they do a less wild version) of Lady Be Good. Fleet-fingered, the quintet worked up a collective appetite…the buffet beckoned.

Earlier, a party of four arrived, looked around the room with its few unoccupied seats, and enquired if they could sit behind (and within arm’s length of) the buffet table. On the understanding that they showed restraint (leaving the festive nibbles undisturbed until the interval!) the party duly took their seats. They were well placed to tuck in as an orderly queue formed and it can be reported that this year’s offering met with wide approval. No names, but more than one person went back for not only seconds, but thirds! ’Tis the season.

The second set began with some Benny Goodman but not before Veitch and Birkett played a duet. As glasses were recharged, our virtuoso guitar duo played All the Things You Are. From Goodman to Eubie Blake's Memories of You (lyrics Andy Razaf) to Edgar Sampson’s Stompin’ at the Savoy, Mr MacDonald was having a ball, after all, to him it’s all about his ‘main man’ – Benny Goodman.


Mr MacDonald can certainly evoke the mood. Either side of a stompin’ I Got Rhythm our clarinetist expertly conjured the flight of the Skylark and gazed into the middle distance somewhere Over the Rainbow. It was almost time to go but not before a swift take on One Note Samba featuring a solo from David Francis, the orchestra finally taking its bow on A Nightingale Sang in Berkeley Square

Russell

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