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Bebop Spoken There

Sean Jones: "There were like three people in church who couldn't sing or play an instrument. We thought there was something wrong with them." (DownBeat July 2022)

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:"Lance writes pull quotes like no one else!"

Postage

14362 (and counting) posts since we started blogging 14 years ago. 581 of them this year alone and, so far, 81 this month (June 26).

From This Moment On ...

June

Tue 28: Jam session @ Black Swan, Newcastle. 7:30pm. House trio: Dean Stockdale, Paul Grainger, Sid White.

Wed 29: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.
Wed 29: Darlington Big Band @ Darlington & Simpson Rolling Mills Club, Darlington. 7:00pm. Rehearsal session (open to the public).
Wed 29: Four @ The Exchange, North Shields. 7:00pm. CANCELLED!
Wed 29: Take it to the Bridge @ The Globe, Newcastle. 7:30pm.

Thu 30: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ The Holystone, North Tyneside. 1:00pm.
Thu 30: 58 Jazz Collective @ Hops & Cheese, Hartlepool. 7:30pm.
Thu 30: Lights Out By Nine @ Hoochie Coochie, Newcastle. 8:30pm. Free.
Thu 30: Maine Street Jazzmen @ Sunniside Social Club, Gateshead. 8:30pm.
Thu 30: Tees Hot Club @ Dorman’s Club, Middlesbrough. 9:00pm.

July

Fri 01: Classic Swing @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.
Fri 01: New Orleans Preservation Jazz Band @ Oxbridge Hotel, Stockton. 1:00pm. £5.00.
Fri 01: Rendezvous Jazz @ The Monkseaton Arms, Monkseaton. 1:00pm.
Fri 01: Swing Manouche @ The Vault, Hexham. 7:30pm (doors). £20.00.
Fri 01: 1920s Speakeasy w live jazz @ The Exchange, North Shields. 8:00pm. A Blues, Jazz & Swing Festival event.
Fri 01: Struggle Buggy @ Prohibition Bar, Newcastle. Blind Pig Blues Club. 8:00pm.

Sat 02: Hot Fingers @ St Augustine’s Parish Centre, Darlington. 12:30pm. £10.00.
Sat 02: Play Jazz! workshop @ The Globe, Newcastle. 1:30pm. Tutor Steve Glendinning: Latin jazz. £25.00. Enrol at: www.jazz.coop.
Sat 02: Talk: Storytelling & jazz as an expression of urban life @ The Exchange, North Shields. 1:45pm. A Blues, Jazz & Swing Festival event.
Sat 02: The Commandments + On Parole @ The Exchange, North Shields. 2:30pm. A Blues, Jazz & Swing Festival event. Rhythm & blues.
Sat 02: Geordie Jazz Man @ The Exchange, North Shields. 5:30pm. A Blues, Jazz & Swing Festival event. Screening of Abi Lewis’ documentary film about Keith Crombie & the Jazz Café.
Sat 02: The Delta Prophets Trio @ The Exchange, North Shields. 6:30pm. A Blues, Jazz & Swing Festival event. Rhythm & blues.
Sat 02: Swing Manouche @ Claypath Deli, Durham. 7:00pm.
Sat 02: Swung Eight & King Bees @ The Exchange, North Shields. 7:30pm. A Blues, Jazz & Swing Festival event. Swing dance + ace Chicago blues band.
Sat 02: Tyne Valley Big Band @ Greenside Community Centre, Ryton. 7:30pm.
Sat 02: Patrick Cromb @ Prohibition Bar, Newcastle. 8:00pm.

Sun 03 Vieux Carré Hot 4 @ Spanish City, Whitley Bay. 12 noon.
Sun 03: Smokin’ Spitfires @ The Cluny, Newcastle. 12:45pm.
Sun 03: Ruth Lambert & Martin Craggs. @ The Exchange, North Shields. 2:00pm. A Blues, Jazz & Swing Festival event.
Sun 03: Abbie Finn Trio @ The Exchange, North Shields. 3:00pm. A Blues, Jazz & Swing Festival event.
Sun 03: Wild Women of Wylam @ The Exchange, North Shields. 4:30pm. A Blues, Jazz & Swing Festival event.
Sun 03: 4B @ The Exchange, North Shields. 5:30pm. A Blues, Jazz & Swing Festival event.
Sun 03: Jazz Jam @ The Exchange, North Shields. 6:30pm. A Blues, Jazz & Swing Festival event.
Sun 03: Jeffrey Hewer Quartet @ The Globe, Newcastle. 8:00pm.

Mon 04: Jazz in the Afternoon @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.

Wed 06: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.
Wed 06: Michael Bublé @ Durham County Cricket Club, Chester le Street. Doors: 5:00pm.
Wed 06: Darlington Big Band @ Darlington & Simpson Rolling Mills Club, Darlington. 7:00pm. Rehearsal session (open to the public).
Wed 06: Four @ The Exchange, North Shields. 7:00pm.
Wed 06: Take it to the Bridge @ The Globe, Newcastle. 7:30pm.

Saturday, December 30, 2017

The "Real" J Hendricks

(By Frank Griffith)
With all due respect to Jimi Hendrix, an equally important and innovative icon of 20th-century American popular music, I would like to share my work with singer/lyricist Jon Hendricks in the wake of his recent passing.

As a saxophonist/arranger, resident in NYC from 1980-96 I first met Jon in December 1993 when an arranger colleague of mine, Mark Lopeman, asked me to assist him with some last minute orchestrations for Jon in anticipation of some gigs around Christmas of that year. Jon had been writing lyrics to several of Miles Davis’ solos from Gil Evans’ arrangements from their 1957 "Miles Ahead" LP on Columbia. These included "My Ship", "I Don't Wanna Be Kissed", "New Rhumba" and "The Maids of Cadiz". These were also performed the following year for Jon’s Christmas week-long engagement at NYC's Blue Note club. The band included such luminaries as Wynton Marsalis, Red Holloway, Benny Golson and Al Grey.
Without getting too technical, my task was to transcribe the original Gil orchestrations (no published scores existed then) and transpose them into Jon's key as his tenor voice was considerably lower than Miles' trumpet and to re-orchestrate them to a nonet with 5 horns. So, in the end, quite a few "plates to spin" concurrently but this was mitigated by the sheer enjoyment of getting to know this great music intimately by going through the process of transcribing and adapting it.

Jon's enthusiasm with this new and forward-looking project was so infectious and inspiring that only a fool would turn down this arranging opportunity. Hard work, yes, but well worth it in so many ways.

Later on, I adapted Gershwin's ""Bess Oh Where Are You Now" from the 1958 "Porgy and Bess" LP. After copying the chart by hand we discovered at rehearsal that its key of Db was not suitable due to one high note at the end being beyond Jon's reach and it had to be recopied into the key of C! Sadly, this was before computer music software allowed one to transpose a chart at the push of a button so I had to recopy the chart again. Oh well....all part of the fun.

I also did several gigs with Jon's nonet during this time which were all very enjoyable as his ebullience on stage with both the band and audience was infectious even if the music went awry, on occasion.  I can also remember ringing Jon to discuss his key for "The Maids of Cadiz" and I suggested Eb instead of E to which he asked, "Which one's higher?" Not sure if he was serious or not. 

In my visits to Jon and Judith's rather spartan 2 bedroom apartment in Lower Manhattan's Battery City, it would not be uncommon to find him still in his pyjamas at 2PM in the afternoon. The second bedroom was the office often full of staff tending to matters to do with publishing royalties and gig bookings etc. Lots going on in that place. Jon and Judith's lifestyle and work were inseparable - leaving no demarcating lines between them. I believe that this could have played a role (along with his good genes) in his longevity (96). He was naturally a good-natured and optimistic kind of guy and this certainly came through each time he picked up the microphone.

As many LJN (and BSH) readers will know, pianist, vocalist, choir leader and arranger (is there anything that he doesn't do?) Pete Churchill, had collaborated with Jon over the last ten years to adapt and orchestrate an entire programme's worth of Gil/Miles material for the twenty-five strong London Vocal Project choir (www.londonvocalproject.com). The LVP performed this material at St Peter's Church in NYC in February 2017 all to great acclaim. Jon did attend the event but did not perform. His presence would certainly have greatly imbued the event. The concert was documented in both audio and video formats and we all await the forthcoming release of this with great anticipation. I am also very pleased (and honoured) to have been involved in the beginnings of this project twenty-three years ago and never would have imagined that it would have reached the stages that it has through the efforts of my friend and colleague (and neighbour), Pete Churchill.

Maybe they should rename the NYC venue of the premiere St Peter's Churchill?
(Or maybe not...?)

The "Real" J. Hendricks was a truly inspirational and positive force in the world of vocal jazz. Long may he and his music live.
Frank Griffith.

1 comment :

Roly said...

A heartfelt and beautifully written tribute.

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