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Bebop Spoken There

Dee Dee Bridgewater: “ Our world is becoming a very ugly place with guns running rampant in this country... and New Orleans is called the murder capital of the world right now ". Jazzwise, May 2024.

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, Mouthpiece Music: "Lance writes pull quotes like no one else!"

Simon Spillett: A lovely review from the dean of jazz bloggers, Lance Liddle...

Josh Weir: I love the writing on bebop spoken here... I think the work you are doing is amazing.

Postage

16382 (and counting) posts since we started blogging 16 years ago. 262 of them this year alone and, so far, 59 this month (April 20).

From This Moment On ...

April

Mon 22: Harmony Brass @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm. Free.

Tue 23: Vieux Carre Hot 4 @ Victoria & Albert Inn, Seaton Delaval. 12:30-3:30pm. £12.00. ‘St George’s Day Afternoon Tea’. Gig with ‘Lashings of Victoria Sponge Cake, along with sandwiches & scones’.
Tue 23: Jalen Ngonda @ Newcastle University Students’ Union. POSTPONED!

Wed 24: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm. Free.
Wed 24: Darlington Big Band @ Darlington & Simpson Rolling Mills Social Club, Darlington. 7:00pm. Free. Rehearsal session (open to the public).
Wed 24: Sinatra: Raw @ Darlington Hippodrome. 7:30pm. Richard Shelton.
Wed 24: Take it to the Bridge @ The Globe, Newcastle. 7:30pm. Free.
Wed 24: Death Trap @ Theatre Royal, Newcastle. 7:30pm. Rambert Dance Co. Two pieces inc. Goat (inspired by the music of Nina Simone) with on-stage musicians.

Thu 25: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ The Holystone, Whitley Road, North Tyneside. 1:00pm. Free.
Thu 25: Jim Jams @ King’s Hall, Newcastle University. 1:15pm. Jim Jams’ funk collective.
Thu 25: Gateshead Jazz Appreciation Society @ Gateshead Central Library, Gateshead. 2:30pm.
Thu 25: Death Trap @ Theatre Royal, Newcastle. 7:30pm. Rambert Dance Co. Two pieces inc. Goat (inspired by the music of Nina Simone) with on-stage musicians.
Thu 25: Jeremy McMurray & the Pocket Jazz Orchestra @ Arc, Stockton. 8:00pm.
Thu 25: Kate O’Neill, Alan Law & Paul Grainger @ Prohibition Bar, Newcastle. 8:00pm. Free. A ‘Jar on the Bar’ gig.
Thu 25: Tees Hot Club @ Dorman’s Club, Middlesbrough. 8:30pm. Guests: Richie Emmerson (tenor sax); Neil Brodie (trumpet); Adrian Beadnell (bass); Garry Hadfield (keys).

Fri 26: Graham Hardy Quartet @ The Gala, Durham. 1:00pm. £8.00.
Fri 26: Classic Swing @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm. Free.
Fri 26: Rendezvous Jazz @ The Monkseaton Arms. 1:00pm. Free.
Fri 26: New Orleans Preservation Jazz Band @ The Oxbridge Hotel, Stockton. 1:00pm. £5.00.
Fri 26: Paul Skerritt with the Danny Miller Big Band @ Glasshouse, Gateshead. 8:00pm.
Fri 26: Abbie Finn’s Finntet @ Traveller’s Rest, Darlington. 8:00pm. Opus 4 Jazz Club.

Sat 27: Abbie Finn Trio @ The Vault, Darlington. 6:00pm. Free.
Sat 27: Papa G’s Troves @ Prohibition Bar, Newcastle. 8:00pm. Free. A ‘Jar on the Bar’ gig.

Sun 28: Musicians Unlimited @ Jackson’s Wharf, Hartlepool. 1:00pm. Free.
Sun 28: More Jam Festival Special @ The Globe, Newcastle. 2:00pm. Free. A ’10 Years a Co-op’ festival event.
Sun 28: Swing Dance workshop @ The Globe, Newcastle. 2:00-4:00pm. Free (registration required). A ’10 Years a Co-op’ festival event.
Sun 28: 4B @ The Ticket Office, Whitley Bay Metro Station. 3:00pm. Free.
Sun 28: Scott Bradlee's Postmodern Jukebox: The '10' Tour @ Glasshouse International Centre for Music, Gateshead. 7:30pm. £41.30 t0 £76.50.
Sun 28: Alligator Gumbo @ The Globe, Newcastle. 8:00pm. A ’10 Years a Co-op’ festival event.
Sun 28: Jerron Paxton @ The Cluny, Newcastle. Blues, jazz etc.

Saturday, January 20, 2018

Graeme Wilson Quartet @ The Jazz Café - Jan 19


Graeme Wilson (tenor & baritone saxophones, bass clarinet, flute & whistling), Paul Edis (keyboards, flute & whistling), Andy Champion (bass, double bass, flute & whistling) & Adam Sinclair (drums & whistling)  
(Review and flute trio photo by Russell/quartet photo courtesy of Mike Tilley).
We know the Graeme Wilson Quartet, we know what to expect, or rather we did. This Newcastle Jazz Café date produced surprise upon surprise. The atmospheric first-floor performance space works best when there is a good crowd in and as the first set was about to get underway the few remaining seats were being snapped up.
Composer, multi-instrumentalist, Honourary Geordie, Graeme Wilson arrived from his Edinburgh home to link up once again with pals Paul Edis, Andy Champion and Adam Sinclair. Wilson said there would be lots of new material (premiere pieces, no less!), and there was, together with two tracks from the quartet’s excellent CD Sure Will Hold a Boat. Wilson opened on tenor saxophone playing a new number titled Hyvot Mill. It bore all the hallmarks of a Graeme Wilson composition with its intricate harmonic structure (the lads were concentrating hard, real hard!) and ‘slow burn’ tenor solo culminating in near volcanic eruption only for our tenor man to take it down then out.
Five Floors Up from Sure Will Hold a Boat heard yet more wonderful tenor playing by Wilson and, as the bandleader took a breather, the trio – Edis, keyboards, Champion, double bass and Adam Sinclair, drums – stretched out in classic piano trio style before Wilson returned to lead the quartet in a most entertaining whistled coda. A new tune without a title prompted Wilson to announce that   Profane Drawings of Trees would suffice. An urgent, swift opening (this had the makings of a new favourite number), the composition’s title inspired by the nineteenth-century novelist James Hogg, pianist Edis crafting a fine solo, inviting the brilliant Sinclair to engage in musical conversation.

Spinning Slowly from Sure Will Hold a Boat featured Sinclair’s imperious, ever-so-slow percussion work (a master at work). A good idea would be to acquire the album – let’s call it a ‘recommended purchase’. Oh, a new album is in the pipeline, watch this space.                 

Earlier your eagle-eyed BSH correspondent spied Wilson’s baritone saxophone lying to one side of the stage…difficult to miss given that it isn’t something easily concealed in a jacket pocket. Golden Gate is a composition that Wilson took along to a rehearsal session by the sadly now defunct John Warren Splinter Group. That rehearsal session would be the last time the orchestra met, as shortly after, the pride of the north east of England would disband due to early-onset austerity cuts. Wilson put the charts away in his study drawer, to be dusted off one day. That day was January 19, 2018. The Jazz Café audience heard the premiere public performance of the tune, a tune Wilson was at pains to point out was named after the Golden Gate Quartet, a magnificent gospel vocal quartet at its peak in the thirties (second-hand vinyl recordings of the Golden Gate Quartet are scarce, one of which resides on the shelves of your reviewer). Amazingly, Wilson’s facility on baritone is equal to his tenor playing, and he’s more than adept on other instruments…

Second set, likely to settle down, fewer surprises. No chance! Flautists Wilson, Edis and Champion – yes, three flutes on stage! – began the set playing an intro to a new chart, Wilson’s After School. Is there no end to their talents? Apparently not! Adam Sinclair wasn’t to be left out, once again the amiable drummer par excellence showing what he could do ahead of our three Pied Pipers taking it out. Why Are You Staring at Me? saw Andy Champion switching to electric bass (echoes of Shiver and other outfits) bookended by Edis’ wonky harpsichord contribution. At its conclusion bandleader Wilson led the applause for ‘Paul Edis on harpsichord’. Moments earlier review notes read: wonky harpsichord. It’s good to be in accord, wonky or not.

Wilson like crosswords (each to their own) and took great delight in discovering ‘brainless act’ is an anagram of bass clarinet! At which point, our man picked up his bass clarinet. The reed didn’t quite behave itself, necessitating a change as Andy Champion, on double bass once more, played a fine solo; considered, restrained, chops in check. The tune? A Dwindling (another new one). The Bold Sammy (referencing firebrand and scourge of the establishment, novelist James Kelman) featured Wilson (tenor) and drummer Sinclair on what would be the penultimate number of the evening. The final tune, yet another new one – Friction Motor – did what a closing number should do, knock ’em dead. That doesn’t tell half the story. This was masterful stuff with its stop time device, the counting in the head (band and audience!), the elision of rip-roaring, full-on sections into swing time feel and back again. Brilliant, quite simply, brilliant.  
Russell. 

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