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Thursday February 25

HAPPY BIRTHDAY EDDIE BELLIS

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12,535 (and counting) posts since we started blogging 12 years ago. 254 of them this year alone and, so far, 105 this month (Feb. 24).

Tuesday, November 27, 2018

Ruth Lambert Trio @ The Beaumont Hotel, Hexham - Nov 26

Ruth Lambert (vocals); Giles Strong (guitar); Paul Susans (double bass)
(Review by Russell)

It had been a while. Ruth Lambert recently returned to performing with the Customs House Big Band but this trio gig was a first opportunity to hear Ms Lambert in an intimate setting, up close, singing to an attentive audience. 

Taking a Chance on Love (comp. Vernon Duke) for starters. Sure enough, Lambert was as good as ever, singing gems from the Great American Songbook. No Moon at AllHere's That Rainy Day (the first of two Van Heusen/Burke numbers), What is This Thing Called Love? - Lambert the supreme interpreter of timeless material. What's more, Lambert's musical associates - Giles Strong and Paul Susans - offered impeccable support during the evening. 


It Could Happen to You opened the second set followed by Teach Me Tonight (it's in the Customs House Big Band's pad), the masterclass continued. Guitarist Giles Strong was the consummate accompanist, taste in abundance. Similarly, affable bassist Paul Susans provided a secure foundation, himself taking an occasional, succinct solo. 

High to low register and back again, often within a couple of bars, Lambert sang with élan, making it look and sound easy. Easy? No way! Lambert is at the top of her game, she's been there for a long time and there's no doubt she'll retain her pre-eminent position in the hierarchy of GASbook singers far into the future. 

Lambert's interpretation of Skylark (comp. Hoagy Carmichael) was never less than masterful, similarly Beautiful Love, one could have listened to this all night but the nine o'clock finish was fast approaching. Billie’s Lover Man heard Lambert at her most introspective, then, as if by design, the mood, and tempo, lifted with It's Only a Paper Moon. It may well be a Barnum and Bailey world, as phony as it can be, but wouldn't you just love to live in Lambert's GASbook world?   

Hexham's Beaumont Hotel is a recent addition to the jazz gig circuit and it is to be hoped that it will develop an audience over the coming weeks. Next Monday (Dec 3, seven o'clock start) it's the duo of Paul Edis (piano) and Graham Hardy (trumpet and flugelhorn).     

Russell.

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