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Bebop Spoken There

George "Big Nick" Nicholas: "This band [George Adams-Don Pullen Quartet] is a bitch on roller skates, baby. They'll run you over if you ain't ready" (JazzTimes April, 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! --

Postage

14250 (and counting) posts since we started blogging 14 years ago. 469 of them this year alone and, so far, 69 this month (May 19).

From This Moment On ...

May.

Wed 25: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.
Wed 25: Darlington Big Band @ Darlington & Simpson Rolling Mills Club, Darlington. 7:00pm. Rehearsal session (open to the public).
Wed 25: Four @ The Exchange, North Shields. 7:00pm.
Wed 25: Take it to the Bridge @ The Globe, Newcastle. 7:30pm.

Thu 26: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ The Holystone, North Tyneside. 1:00pm.
Thu 26: Deep Pope + Garner & Pope @ Cobalt Studios, Newcastle. 7:00pm. £7.00.
Thu 26: 58 Jazz Collective @ Hops & Cheese, Hartlepool. 7:30pm.
Thu 26: Knats @ Hoochie Coochie, Newcastle. 8:00pm.
Thu 26: Jeremy McMurray & the Pocket Orchestra @ Arc, Stockton. 8:00pm.
Thu 26: Maine Street Jazzmen @ Sunniside Social Club, Gateshead. 8:30pm.
Thu 26: Tees Hot Club @ Dorman’s Club, Middlesbrough. 9:00pm.

Fri 27: Alice Grace Quartet @ The Gala, Durham. 1:00pm.
Fri 27: Classic Swing @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.
Fri 27: New Orleans Preservation Jazz Band @ Oxbridge Hotel, Stockton. 1:00pm.
Fri 27: Rendezvous Jazz @ The Monkseaton Arms, Monkseaton. 1:00pm.
Fri 27: Fergus McCreadie Trio @ The Witham, Barnard Castle. 7:30pm.

Sat 28: Whitley Bay Carnival: Northern Monkey Brass Band (1:00-1:45pm & 4:00-4:45pm); Baghdaddies (2:00-2:45pm & 5:00-5:45pm) @ Spanish City Plaza Arena, Whitley Bay. Northern Monkey Brass Band (2:30-2:45pm) @ Rainbow Corner (Marine Ave.), Whitley Bay.
Sat 28: Jack Logan & the Swing Section @ Prohibition Bar, Newcastle. 8:00pm.

Sun 29 Vieux Carré Hot 4 @ Spanish City, Whitley Bay. 12 noon.
Sun 29: Musicians Unlimited @ Hartlepool United Supporters’ Club, Hartlepool. 1:00pm.
Sun 29: Foundry Jazz Ensemble @ The Exchange, North Shields. 3:00pm.
Sun 29: Groovetrain @ Tyne Bar, Newcastle. 4:00pm. Free.
Sun 29: Zoë Gilby Quartet @ Allendale Village Hall, Northumberland. 7:30pm.
Sun 29: Two of a Mind: Sue Ferris-Steve Summers Quartet @ The Globe, Newcastle. 8:00pm. £10.00 adv., £12.00. door.
Sun 29: Cedric Burnside @ Cluny, Newcastle. Superb Mississippi hill country blues!

Mon 30: Jazz in the Afternoon @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.

Tue 31: Jam session @ Black Swan, Newcastle. 7:30pm. House trio: Stu Collingwood, Paul Grainger, Rob Walker.

Tuesday, May 08, 2018

Darlington Jazz Festival: Matt Roberts Sextet @ Voodoo Café - May 4

Matt Roberts (trumpet); Riley Stone-Lonergan (tenor saxophone); George Grant (alto saxophone); Chris Eldred (piano); Daisy George (double bass); Sam Gardner (drums)
(Review by Russell) 
Every year a handful of gigs are eagerly anticipated by your reviewer – Vasilis Xenopoulos playing the Traveller’s Rest in Darlington and Blaydon’s Black Bull, the Strictly Smokin’ Big Band’s sell out  ‘big name’ concerts, and, during the Darlington Jazz Festival, the returning trumpeter Matt Roberts playing a hometown gig above the Voodoo Café on Skinnergate. Friday evening’s 'Jazz After Dark' concert featured Roberts’ brilliant, youthful sextet playing the music of Kenny Dorham.

This year’s edition of Matt Roberts’ band wrought no fewer than four changes in personnel. The in-demand Leo Richardson couldn’t make it as his star is in the ascendant following the release of his album The Chase and his busy itinerary simply couldn’t accommodate Darlington. Roberts thought about it for a second before giving fellow Leeds College of Music graduate Riley Stone-Lonergan a call. A good choice, RSL was in fine form when heard recently in Durham. Pianist Chris Eldred was another obvious first call. With a cv including gigs with John Dankworth, Jean Toussaint and Bobby Wellins, appearances at Ronnie’s, the Bull’s Head and Soho’s Pizza Express, and a long tenure as pianist with NYJO, Eldred would surely cut it. 
The bass and drums working on this 2018 festival gig were well known and not so well known. Drummer Sam Gardner played this gig two or three years ago and as another LCoM graduate is no stranger to the regional jazz scene. The one name not so well known was double bass player Daisy George. In her final year at the Royal Academy of Music, Daisy, as of Friday, is your reviewer’s new favourite bass player! The one survivor from last year’s line-up, alto saxophonist George Grant, stood to Roberts’ right, just as he did last year, ready to rip it up.

The annual ‘Jazz After Dark’ gig guarantees a full house and this year wasn’t any different. Family, friends, fans, they were out in force to welcome home one of their own. Matt Roberts, now wearing spectacles to read the charts (at the grand old age of thirty-ish!), greeted all and sundry, eventually making it to the stand ready to play some Kenny Dorham. Una Mas for openers, Poetic Spring from Blue Spring (Dorham’s album with Cannonball Adderley) following up, this 2018 edition of Robert’s amazing band was up and running, firing on all cylinders. Trumpeter Roberts led the way; the blue touch paper lit, the slow burn solo, the fireworks. RSL and Grant stood either side of the Main Man smiling, weighing up their options, confident they would match Robert’s opening joust. The rhythm section purred, then purred some more with Eldred supplying the chords as Sam Gardener played better than ever – at one point Roberts effusive about the drummer’s ‘hard-bop chops’ – and then there’s our undergraduate, Daisy George. Simply wonderful, in-the-pocket bass playing, often with eyes closed, very much into it all as her bandmates looked on with no little admiration. It’s difficult to believe this was Daisy’s first gig with Matt’s band!  

On more than one occasion Roberts drew on Joe Henderson (Recorda Me) and from Whistle Stop, Dorham’s 1961 Blue Note album, Philly Twist and later in the set, Buffalo. Robert’s sextet exploited these numbers to the full – killer frontline solos, a cookin’ rhythm section – at one point prompting Roberts to joke that the positive audience response was down to his immaculate transcriptions!

During the interval the band went to the bar, some stepped outside to take the air, and after a while the Matt Roberts Sextet reconvened, drinks in hand, ready to play some more Kenny Dorham.
Band leader Roberts, playing his Yamaha ‘Bobby Shew’ trumpet, hit the ground running, firing from the first note on Straight Ahead as the engine room once again stoked the hard bop fires and again on the aforementioned Buffalo. George Grant weighed in on alto as the band first played Afrodisia, then it was the turn of Riley Stone-Lonergan to knock out another big tenor solo. The frontline took the majority of the solos but the rhythm section grabbed its share; pianist Chris Eldred dazzled, as did bassist Daisy George, and drummer Sam Gardner played better than ever – and that’s saying something! As the evening neared its end at way past eleven o’clock Joe Henderson’s album In ‘n Out offered Roberts the pick, choosing first Brown’s Town (featuring RSL, Eldred and George) and later Short Stay. Matt Roberts’ annual gig is a sure-fire winner and they’ll do it all again next year! 
Russell.                   


1 comment :

Patti said...

As Mr Reviewer says in his own inimitable way - this was one stonkingly brilliant gig, from start to finish ..... it was possible to get really close to the band, and it's always a joy to see fantastic musicians enjoying their gig as much as this appreciative audience member!

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