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Sunday, June 17, 2018

Tonight! Great Guitars @ Blaydon Jazz Club

At the end of the twentieth century, two Belfast lads travelled to Newcastle to study jazz guitar with James Birkett. Dr Birkett had developed the pioneering BMus (Hons) degree programmes in Jazz, Popular and Commercial Music and the Irishmen were to prove to be two of many success stories down the years. This evening (Sunday, June 17) the Belfast lads make a first visit to Blaydon Jazz Club to play a concert as an accomplished jazz guitar duo.

Following graduation Mark Williams and Joel Byrne-McCullough went their separate ways; Mark decided to make his home here on Tyneside with Joel moving to Manchester where he became an in demand session musician. Recently, Joel returned to the northeast and they resumed their jazz guitar duo partnership. A gig at their old haunt (then Keith Crombie’s Jazz Café) confirmed that the boys were playing better than ever. An appearance at Ushaw Jazz Festival quickly followed and as and when they have a free date in their busy schedules they’ll happily play a duo set together.

Tonight at the Black Bull on Bridge Street in Blaydon Mark and Joel will play some of their favourite numbers. Perhaps some Jim Hall, perhaps Bill Frisell, John Scofield. Whatever they choose to play it’ll be masterful stuff. Get along in time for an eight o’clock start, it’s a mere fiver on the door. Jazz guitar at its very best.
Russell
(Photo courtesy of Mike Tilley)          

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