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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)

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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.

Friday, March 16, 2018

James Harrison Trio @ The Lit & Phil, Newcastle - March 16

James Harrison (piano/drums); Anth Ord (bass guitar); Tom Chapman (drums).
(Review by Lance).
The monthly Friday lunchtime sessions at the Lit and Phil are rapidly becoming an automatic entry into the jazzoholic's diary. As with the Gala lunchtime gigs at Durham, they are invariably sold out. Today's session may not have been totally sold out but, for latecomers, it was standing room only.
When the attraction is the James Harrison Trio, understandably so.
Three young men of talent, they delighted the audience with their brand of piano jazz. Harrison is that rare breed of jazz musician who can be both creative and entertaining at the same time. 
Bass guitarist Ord once played a wrong note but it was so long ago that jazz historians are still unsure of the actual date - there were none today. 
Chapman's solos were absolutely compelling although his position was challenged when Harrison leaped from the piano stool and joined him in a drum duet. I think the tune was Putting on the Ritz although Fred Astaire would have had his work cut out dancing to this version!
One of those afternoons that you hope will never end. The pieces flowed; from the pianist's unaccompanied, rhapsodic intro to the opener right through to the closing Yardbird Suite. In between we had, among others, Mambo Inn, Put on a Happy Face, Strasbourg  St. Denis, Obsession and an unaccompanied piano solo - There Will Never Be Another You. Not the tear up so beloved of jammers but a delicate, sensitive, version dedicated to the late trumpet player Pete Papprill an early mentor of James. A deserved tribute by one great musician to another.
Outside, it didn't matter that it was raining - I felt like Gene Kelly (come to think of it, didn't James insert a quote from that movie during an exchange of fours?)
I'm sure the trio will be back to the Lit & Phil but, in the meantime, there are other delights in store;
April 6:  Birkett & Johnston Duo.
May4:    Alan Barnes & Paul Edis.
June 22: Ushaw Ensemble.
Lance.

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