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Bebop Spoken There

Guy Barker: "You have to play it [the trumpet] every day or you just won't be match-fit." - (Jazz Rag, Winter 2019.)

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Today Friday December 13

Afternoon

Jazz

Vieux CarréJazzmen - Spanish City, Spanish City Plaza, Whitley Bay NE26 1BG. 12 noon. ‘Christmas Jazz Lunch’. Details from 0191 252 9429).

Dean Stockdale Trio - The Merry Monk, 30 Market Place, Bishop Auckland DL14 7NP. 1:00pm. £5.00.

Rendezvous Jazz - Monkseaton Arms, Front Street, Monkseaton NE25 8DP. Tel: 0191 251 3928. 1:00pm. Free.

Evening.

Jazz

‘An Evening of Swing & Sparkle’ - National Glass Centre, Liberty Way, Sunderland SR6 0GL. Tel: 0191 515 5555. 7:30pm. £35.00. Rat Pack evening inc. 4-course meal.

Strictly Smokin’ Big Band - Gosforth Civic Theatre, Regents Farm Road, Gosforth, Newcastle NE3 3HD. Tel: 0191 284 3700. 8:00pm. £12.00. + bf. First night of two.

Chris Dean's Syd Lawrence Orchestra - Yarm School, Stockton TS15 9EJ. Tel: 01642 786023. 7:30pm (6:30pm doors). £18.00. + £1.80. bf (£15.00. + £1.50. bf). 'Mistletoe & Miller'.

Blues, Funk/Soul etc.

Baghdaddies - Cobalt Studios, Boyd Street, NewcastleNE2 1AP. £10.68 (inc. bf). ‘Big Xmas Knees Up’.

Swamp Hoppers - Billy Bootleggers, Nelson St, Newcastle NE1 5AN. 9pm. Free.

George Shovlin & the Acoustic Radars feat. Pat Rafferty + George Pallas & John Wilkins - Whitburn Cricket Club, East Street, Whitburn SR6 7BZ. Tel: 0191 529 3187. 7:30pm (7:00pm doors). £7.50. admission by ticket only (from www.wegottickets.com). 'The Bents Road Sessions'.

Dead Skunk Skiffle & Blues Orchestra + Stetson Five - Station East, Hills Street, Gateshead NE8 2AN. 8:00pm. Free.

To the best of our knowledge, details of the above events are correct but may be subject to alteration.

Friday, July 13, 2018

Andy Lawrenson Trio @ GCT Jazz Club - July 12.

Andy Lawrenson (violin/vocals); Simon O'Byrne (guitar/vocals); Paul Grainger (double bass).
(Review by Lance).
Sadly, the English World Cup dream was over and we didn't face a confrontation with France on Sunday which made the Andy Lawrenson Trio's presentation Le Café Parisien less controversial although, such was the strength of performance by the trio that I may have almost been persuaded to change allegiances - almost!
This was one of those mini gems that spring up on you unexpectedly. On the face of it, it looked likely to be yet another Hot Club outing - I think there are now more hot-clubbers around than there are traddies - and a large part of the ALT repertoire does stem from Django & Stephane. However, it doesn't end there, if anything it starts there before weaving its way around the arrondissements of Paris.
The most unusual aspect of this vignette was the complete lack of amplification - even the vocals were sung acoustically - yet it didn't detract, if anything, because of the intimate setting of Gosforth Civic Theatre (the musicians played at ground level enabling them to interact with the audience), it enhanced the music. A Maccaferri in full flight is a force to be reckoned with and O'Byrne is a commendable exponent of the genre. He also sings quite uniquely. I'm unsure as to whether its great drama or dark comedy but, whatever, he does it well.
By contrast, Lawrenson's voice is lighter, perhaps even romantic in the late 'twenties/early 'thirties style that heralded the arrival of the crooners.
His violin playing ticks all the Grappelli boxes just as O'Byrne's does the Reinhardt ones. But there's more to it than that. Celtic reels and jigs turn up in the most unexpected places - not least in the most swinging version of Paganini's Caprice XX1V since Benny Goodman's 1942 recording.
The classics were well and truly jazzed. Apart from Pag's Caprice, we had Bach's Toccata and Fugue in D minor and Mozart's Rondo Alla Turka once recorded by Red Ingle and his Natural 7 as Moe Zart's Turkey Trot! On top of that, we had a couple of Klezmer pieces, a few bars of Cream and a lot of repartee twixt Andy and Simon with the occasional intervention by the exquisitely coiffured Grainger who, as ever, was a tower of strength.
So, apart from Mozart and co, what else did we hear?
Minor Swing; It Had to be You, sung by Andy complete with verse; After You've Gone, vocal by Simon; Greensleeves; J'attendrai; Honeysuckle Rose; A fast waltz, Under Paris Skies; Lady be Good, crooned by Andy; Coquette; Kashtanka (or something similar) sung in Polish by Simon; Django's Tiger; I Can't Give You Anything But Love, sung by Andy; an incredible Sweet Georgia Brown that sounded as if it was intended for the Dublin Globetrotters and, finally, All of Me with a Segovia type intro by Simon and vocal by Andy.
Needless to say, all of the above numbers had swingy violin solos. Our fiddler added a mute on J'attendrai that gave the violin an almost viola-like sonority and, throughout he displayed an enviable technique.
O'Byrne too can get around the guitar. At times it sounded as though all three Hot Club guitarists were riffing away.
Paul Grainger, as elegant as any Frenchman proved he can handle music and rhythm from any continent or genre as well as soloing more melodically than most bassists.
Overall, it was a delightful evening of gypsy jazz and its spinoffs handled by three of the finest and all done in an entertaining manner,
They're at the Prohibition Bar on July 28 don't miss it.
Lance.

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