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Bebop Spoken There

Brian Harvey: "The exciting day arrived and we [as under age school boys] snuck into the [pub's] rehearsal room, sat awkwardly to attention on hard chairs in a row facing the band and heard our first - very loud - live jazz. What an occasion that was - we even drank beer because we understood that's what jazz people did and that's what the band were drinking." - (Just Jazz June 2020)

Dave Rempis:Ten years from now, I can see musicians streaming concerts in real time and charging a minimal amount for people to watch.” - (DownBeat September 2013)

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As we all know there are no live gigs taking place in the immediate future. However, any links to jazz streaming that are deemed suitable - i.e. with a professional approach - will be considered for posting.

Sunday, January 07, 2018

CD Review: Birkett & Fisk Play Venuti & Lang

Emma Fisk (violin); James Birkett (guitar)
(Review by Lance).
In the beginning, God made Eddie and Joe who begat Stephane and Django who begat Emma and James...
Emma and James are well known and respected on the Hot Club circuit through their work with bands such as Djangologie and Emma's own Hot Club du Nord. James and his protege Bradley Johnston are the hottest jazz guitar duo around whilst Emma is invariably featured (amongst other things) at the Whitley Bay Classic Jazz Party in tribute sessions to other jazz violin legends.
Here, Emma and James go back to the roots of early jazz stringsters and remind us how innovative Venuti and Lang were and how they [Emma and James] don't fall short in that department either.
Venuti was renowned for being a prankster and some of the titles reflect that: Black and Blue Botton; Kickin' The Cat and Cheese and Crackers have that zany feel about them although the playing is far from zany. Paradoxically, Sunshine has quite a melancholy mood. However, you want melancholy? Listen to James' Eddie's Lament. Both players tug at the heartstrings without sounding maudlin.
Raggin' the Scale is the piece I know best having had the original on a '78' for about a thousand years. Listening to it now, I wonder if this maybe pre-dated Kind of Blue...?
Both players swing, complementing each other in solo and support. James plays all the right chords in all the right places with a few inversions of his own that would surely have got the nod from Eddie himself.
Emma displays a fluency many a horn player would envy - not to mention other fiddle players.
Highly recommended,
Listen/buy.
Lance.

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