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Bebop Spoken There

Aubrey Logan: "I chose trombone because trombone just kicks my ass, and I needed to do something that was hard" - (DownBeat June 2019).

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2019 Parliamentary Jazz Awards

The voting is open between now and May 31 to enable site visitors to nominate their choices in the various categories of this year's APPJAG awards which can be done here.
BSH was very proud to be nominated and to win the 2018 Media Award and hope we can have your support again this year.

Today Wednesday May 22

Afternoon

Jazz

Vieux Carré Jazzmen - Cullercoats Crescent Club, 1 Hudleston, Cullercoats NE30 4QS. Tel: 0191 253 0242. 1:00pm. Free admission.

Julija Jacenaite & Alan Law - Jazz Café, Newcastle Arts Centre, Westgate Road, Newcastle NE1 1SG. Tel: 0191 261 5618. 2:00pm. Free. Café Mezzanine (first floor, access via crafts shop).

Evening

Take it to the Bridge - The Globe, Railway Street, Newcastle NE4 7AD. 7:30pm. £1.00.

Blues

Moonshine Sessions - Billy Bootleggers, Nelson St, Newcastle NE1 5AN. 8:30pm. Free.

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

Wednesday, August 15, 2018

CD Review: Stéphane Spira - New Playground

Stéphane Spira (soprano); Joshua Richman (piano/Rhodes); Steve Wood (bass); Jimmy Macbride (drums).
(Review by Lance).
Soprano has never been my favourite member of the saxophone family. Neither the ten-miles wide vibrato of Sidney Bechet nor the painful harmonic extremities of the latter-day John Coltrane have floated my boat so it was with some trepidation that I approached this album. Spira, a French-born resident of New York had me wondering, given Bechet's years in Paris and Trane's time in New York, if this was going to be an unholy marriage of the two extremes?
Fortunately, my fears were unfounded. Spira has a liquidity of tone that ticks all the right boxes whilst managing to keep the listener interested with his ideas and compositions.
Self-taught, the former Parisian is described as having honed his jazz chops old-school style, at late-night jams and cutting sessions. However, music wasn't his first priority - earning a living took precedence and this he did by pursuing an engineering degree that took him to Saudi Arabia.
1990 saw him back in Paris, woodshedding and jamming for 15 years before making the life-changing decision to move to New York. 
A late-blooming jazzman, all those years playing in dimly-lit basements have paid off in this, his second New York recording. 
Lyrical, explorative and swinging in a contemporary manner - if Paul Desmond had played soprano he may have sounded like this.
His fellow musicians are much more than mere sidemen, each contributing at the same high level as the leader. Wood, not only fulfilling the traditional bass player's role but also putting in some fine arco work. Richman too is a sympathetic accompanist as well as being a sparkling soloist in his own right whilst drummer Macbride (correct spelling!) is sensitive when sensitivity is called for and not left behind when the gas pedal is pushed to the floor.
Although not released until Sept. 21, here's a link to whet your appetite and to connect with his previous albums from both New York and Paris.
Lance

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