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Bebop Spoken There

George Shearing: "Speaking about Johann Sebastian Bach I think he'd be a real jazzer if he were alive today. I mean any man who has two wives, twenty kids, gets kicked out of the church for being too harmonically radical and drinks beer can't be all wrong can he?" - (Crescendo March 1984.)


Today Thursday December 12



Vieux Carré Jazzmen - Holystone, Whitley Road, Holystone NE27 0DA. Tel: 0191 266 6173. 12:00pm. Free.

Note earlier time for this week only!




Hot Club du Nord - Lubetkin Theatre, East Durham College, Willerby Drive, Peterlee SR8 2RN. Tel: 0191 518 2000. 7:00pm. £10.00. (£5.00. under 18s). 'Jazz at the Lubetkin'.

Gala Big Band - Gala Theatre & Cinema, Millennium Place, Durham DH1 1WA. Tel: 03000 266 600. 7:30pm. £10.00. (£8.00. concs.). ‘Gala Big Band Does Christmas’.

Durham University Big Band - Dunelm House, New Elvet, Durham DH1 3AN. Tel: 0191 334 1777. Free. 7:30pm. ‘Jazzy Christmas’.

Indigo Jazz Voices - The Globe, Railway Street, Newcastle NE4 7AD. 7:30pm. £5.00. (£2.00. student).

Maine Street Jazzmen - Sunniside Social Club, Hollywell Lane, Sunniside, Gateshead NE16 5NJ. Tel: 0191 488 7347. 8:30pm. Free.

Tees Hot Club w. Gus Smith (vocals); Dave Stansfield (tenor sax); Ted Pearce (keys) - Dorman’s Club, Oxford Road, Middlesbrough TS5 5DT. Tel: 01642 823813. 8:30pm. Free.

New Orleans Preservation Jazz Band - Oxbridge, Oxbridge Lane, Stockton on Tees TS18 4AW. 8:30pm. £2.50.



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

Monday, July 09, 2018

Jazz in the Afternoon @ the Crescent Club, Cullercoats - July 9

Herbie Hudson (trombone/vocal/harmonica); Harry Stephenson (clarinet); Neville Hartley (trombone); John Carstairs Hallam (bass); Ollie Rillands (drums); Brian Chester (trombone); Roy Gibson (piano); Teresa Armstrong (vocals); Ann Wilson (vocals) + Colin Aitchison (trumpet/vocals); Neville Sarony (vocals).
(Review by Lance).
Our man in Hong Kong, Colin, made his annual pilgrimage back home. His flight probably took only slightly longer than my Metro/bus/shank's pony trek from Hebburn to Cullercoats a complete contrast to yesterday's journey on the same route - more of my misfortunes later.
Appropriately enough, when I did arrive, the oldest swinger in town - Teresa Armstrong - was singing What a Difference a Day Made - it sure did! The First Lady of Cullercoats also sang of Red Sails in the Sunset and Mean to Me. That great line - Why should you be mean to me when you know what you mean to me? Herbie Hudson blew an equally mean harmonica solo.

Raffle drawn, tickets discarded, it was time for Ned Kelly himself to take the stand - sans tin mask. 
All the cats joined in including Harry Stephenson whose trademark used to be a spider dangling from the bell of his clarinet. The spider was absent - perhaps the RSPCS stepped in or maybe it died of old age. However, even without his beloved spider, Harry blew some fine clarinet. Colin, of course, was blowing great and in good voice on I'm Gonna Sit Right Down and Write Myself an Email. Neville Sarony stepped up and sang Ain't Misbehavin' with an amazing scat chorus.
Ann Wilson sang Stranger on the Shore. Not often that you hear a vocal version and the lyric, although not up there with Mean to Me, does give it a certain winsome freshness after years of  O D'ing on Acker. Nice one Ann.
The show was drawing to a close, Brian Chester joined Hudson and Hartley for a jam on The Saints/Mama Don't Allow. This was like being back in the old New Orleans Club. Herbie did the vocal and everyone else soloed with mucho gusto!
It was gone 3pm but Jazzers don't know about time other than 4/4 or 3/4 or 5/4 (by accident) and C Jam Blues saw the afternoon out.
I left with the glow that you can only get by hearing good jazz and slurping down a couple of real ales.
So why did I not report the first set or hear John Broddle sing?
1) The never reliable Tyne and Wear Metro called it a day at West Monkseaton due, they said, to overhead power failure.
2) It looked as though we were going to spend the rest of our lives in West Monkseaton so I jumped train which, fortunately, was alongside the platform. My intention being to board a bus to Cullercoats which was only 3 stops down the line.
3) Buses don't go to Cullercoats from West Monkseaton. A brisk walk down the road as it started to rain. Not heavy rain but just enough to dampen my enthusiasm.
4) A bus to Whitley Bay duly turned up and got me somewhat closer to my destination. In fact it dropped me off right next to a sign that read Taxi Rank. This turned out to be a mirage so once again I was whistling Walkin'.
5) I've never been too sure about the existence of God but today may have swung me a little bit towards him.
6) Oliver's Book Shop, 48a Whitley Road, is situated about midway along my route. I couldn't resist calling in. It's a proper bookshop with a stock only slightly less than that of the Britsh Library. I was tempted to spend the rest of the afternoon here. The owner directed me to the music books, of which there were many, and covering most genres. There was a copy of the infamous Shining Trumpets. Rudi Blesh's book was the first jazz book I ever bought. Happily, it wasn't long after that I picked up Leonard Feather's Inside Bebop and my future was laid out. I still have both books.
7) One book I didn't have and Mr Oliver did have was Gene Lees' You Can't Steal a Gift. Immaculate first edition complete with dust jacket - £6. This was one gift I didn't steal! I readily parted with my £6 and went on my way to 'church' rejoicing which is where we came in.

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