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Bebop Spoken There

Andrew Hadro: "It seems to me that everybody just puts out an album, they go through the motions, spend the money and they just sort of throw it out there into the sea of CDs and hope something comes back" - (DownBeat June 2018).

Jonnathan Blake (Blindfold Test): “Maybe it's someone from New Orleans who has lived in New York for a minute.” (DownBeat June 2018).

Today Monday May 21

Afternoon.

Jazz in the Afternoon - Cullercoats Crescent Club, 1 Hudleston, Cullercoats NE30 4QS. Tel: 0191 253 0242. 1:00pm. Free.

Evening

Jazz FM - a Paul Edis track to be played between 6-7pm.

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

Monday, January 22, 2018

Bradley Johnston @ The Fire Station, Sunderland - Jan 21

Bradley Johnston (guitar)
(Review by Russell).
Snow, a non-weather related disruption to the Metro network, the half-hour journey from Newcastle to Sunderland promised to be fraught with difficulties. Oh, ye of little faith! A convenient train pulled into the station…all aboard! And off to Sunderland we go! The Fire Station the destination, and the reason for making the trip? Bradley Johnston, jazz guitarist in residence.
The Fire Station, a recently renovated building adjacent to Sunderland Empire, has reopened as a place to meet, eat, drink and, on a Sunday evening, listen to Bradley Johnston play jazz guitar. The High St West site is developing into a cultural hub with dance, theatre and music on the agenda. At present, the bar and kitchen are open for business with all parts of the building scheduled to be fully operational by 2019. In advance of Johnston’s arrival, the bar manager cordoned-off a raised corner section to enable the Wearside-based guitarist to set up without disturbance or delay.
Professional, looking the part for this sort of engagement, Brad started on time – we expect nothing less from our well-schooled musician ‘taking care of business.’ Three leisurely sets, the intervals an opportunity to catch up with friends, the repertoire spot on for the occasion, BJ has ‘got a gig going’ albeit on Wearside rather than the West Coast! It was a GASbook list of composers; Duke, Antonio Carlos Jobim, Harold Arlen, Ray Noble, Rodgers and Hart, Gershwin and more. The running order,  was, more or less, as follows – Wave, My Funny Valentine, They Can’t Take That Away From Me, an extra helping of Jobim with The Girl from Ipanema, Have You Met Miss Jones? All of this and many  more, the patrons for the most part not listening (what’s new?), although, credit where it’s due, one or two did listen perhaps wondering ‘How does he do that?’ Indeed, how does Brad do it? Masterful playing, one number running into another, an ‘on the fly’ medley. Joe Pass did it, and Martin Taylor does it, so too Bradley Johnston.

A switch to six string acoustic for a couple of numbers which included Lennon and McCartney’s In My Life worked well, but it wasn’t long before Brad took up his Ibanez once more to play The Very Thought of You, A Nightingale Sang in Berkeley Square, a return to ACJ with One Note Samba, a few bars of Georgia, I’m Beginning to See the Light and Over the Rainbow – it’s easy when you know how and Bradley Johnston definitely knows how it’s done.

The Fire Station’s cask beers are likely to attract the attention of members of CAMRA and foodies should take a look at the menu which is available until seven o’clock. Brad chatted to friends, said hello to fellow musician Alan Marshall and he appears to have struck up a good relationship with the Sunday evening staff.

Brad played through the house PA which was more than adequate, his sound projecting easily to all parts of the spacious room. Many features from the building’s days as a fire station have been retained – buckets and helmets adorning the (original) tiled walls, but sadly no fireman’s pole! The prospect of musicians arriving on stage in a most unconventional manner would have been worth turning up for! No matter, we turned up to hear jazz guitar. Another acoustic guitar interlude – the  Lennon and McCartney songbook offers up endless riches – as Brad played And I Love Her.

Joe Pass aka Bradley Johnston played You Turned the Tables on Me – oh, for Ella to walk in. Ray Noble’s Cherokee did several laps of the room, Rollin’s Doxy overtaking on the blind side, Duke’s Satin Doll, you’d pay good money to hear this stuff and here in Sunderland it’s for free. Farmer’s Trust (comp. Pat Metheny) closed a third and final set exactly on time at nine o’clock. Do support Brad’s residency, it’s about time Wearsiders had a regular jazz gig to go to. 
Russell.   

1 comment :

Anonymous said...

[They're] probably gonna spin you some line about jazz
How [they love] Dizzy and Chet
But John and Paul hanging up on [their] wall
That's about as jazz as [they get].
Paul Heaton.

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Whilst we appreciate the many emails, texts, messages and other communications we receive requesting album/gig reviews on BSH, regrettably, we are unable to reply to them all other than those we are able to answer with a positive response.
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About this blog - contact details.

Bebop Spoken Here -- Here, being the north-east of England -- centred in the blues heartland of Newcastle and reaching down to the Tees Delta and looking upwards to the Land of the Kilt.
Not a very original title, I know; not even an accurate one as my taste, whilst centred around the music of Bird and Diz, extends in many directions and I listen to everything from King Oliver to Chick Corea and beyond. Not forgetting the Great American Songbook the contents of which has provided the inspiration for much great jazz and quality popular singing for round about a century.
The idea of this blog is for you to share your thoughts and pass on your comments on discs, gigs, jazz - music in general. If you've been to a gig/concert or heard a CD that knocked you sideways please share your views with us. Tell us about your favourites, your memories, your dislikes.
Lance (Who wishes it to be known that he is not responsible for postings other than his own and that he's not always responsible for them.)
Contact: lanceliddle@gmail.com I look forward to hearing from you.

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