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Bebop Spoken There

Michael Dease: "Slide [Hampton] is also one of the people to expand the range of the horn, so he's popping out high Fs like they're breakfast cereals." - (JazzTimes Oct. 2019).

Archive

Daily: July 6 - October 27

Precarity John Akomfrah’s film (2017, 46 mins) about Buddy Bolden - Baltic Centre for Contemporary Art, Gateshead Quays, South Shore Road, Gateshead NE8 3BA. Tel: 0191 478 1810. Screenings at intervals during the day. Part of Akomfrah's exhibition Ballasts of Memory. Exhibition (daily) July 6 - October 27. 10:00am-6:00pm. Free.

Today Friday October 18

Afternoon

Jazz

Precarity John Akomfrah’s film (2017, 46 mins) about Buddy Bolden (see above).

Classic Swing - Jesmond Royal British Legion Club, West Jesmond Avenue, Jesmond, Newcastle NE2 3EX. Tel: 0191 281 0736. 1:00pm. Free.

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

Evening.

Ella Fitzgerald: Just One of Those Things - Forum Cinema, Market Place, Hexham NE46 1XF. Tel: 01434 601144. 7:00pm. £8.30. - £5.80. Film (2019, 89 mins) directed by Leslie Woodhead. Swing Bridge Trio in Café Bar following screening.

Dave O’Higgins & Colin Oxley - Great Broughton Village Hall, Ingleby Road, Great Broughton TS9 7ER. 7:30pm. £20.00. ‘O’Higgins & Oxley Play Monk & ‘Trane’. Oxley replaces Rob Luft.

Paul Taylor - Ushaw College, Durham DH7 7DW. Tel: 0191 334 5119. 7:30pm. Free (donations). An Ushaw Piano Festival event.

Jazz Lads - Saltburn Cricket Club, Marske Mill Lane, Saltburn TS12 1HJ. Tel: 01287 622761. 8:00pm. £5.00.

Guisborough Big Band - Saltburn Golf Club, Guisborough Road, Saltburn TS12 1NJ. Tel: 01287 622812. Time TBC.

Miles Davis: Birth of the Cool - Tyneside Cinema, Pilgrim Street, Newcastle NE1 6QG. Tel: 0191 227 5500. Time 8:30pm. Screening of Stanley Nelson's documentary film (2019, cert. 15, 1hr 55mins).

Blues/Soul etc.

Ray Stubbs R & B All Stars - Billy Bootleggers, Nelson St, Newcastle NE1 5AN. 9pm. Free.

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

Friday, January 25, 2019

CD Review: Ran Blake & Jeanne Lee - The Newest Sound You Never Heard

Ran Blake (piano); Jeanne Lee (vocal)
(Review by Lance).

It's argued that the GASbook has run its course. That just about every song from the masters that was worthwhile has been played, backward, forwards and just about every which way but loose by the good, the bad and the ugly and the only thing left is for original compositions by today's young Turks. 

Not something I personally go along with, there is life in the old book yet. However, I can understand today's breed of jazz musician not being totally au fait with the grand tradition why should they? "Who's this Kern fellow? He died before I was born. I wrote my next number sitting on the bus..."

I can understand both points but, an original number is not going to draw older people in just as a number by Carmichael, H, isn't going to mean a lot to the younger audience.

There is an in-between area where both extremes can meet.
Pop music!

Back in the sixties, jazzers either viewed the beat group boom with disdain - we'll squash these upstarts just like we did the Nazis and the Japs - or else they adopted the 'if we can't beat 'em join them attitude'. Neither worked. The invaders didn't retreat into the sea  and Basie's Beatle Bag, or Ella singing Hard Day's Night was, like some of Sinatra's attempts (Everybody's Twistin'), embarrassing and did nothing to bridge the ever-increasing divide. Paradoxically, in later years, they, the popsters, were queuing up to record the music they so arrogantly dismissed in their puberty years. Rod Stewart, Bob Dylan, Paul McCartney and quite a few others discovered that Porter, Kern, Gershwin etc. weren't so bad after all!

Then, more recently, singers in particular, discovered a magic formula. A mix of standards, chart hits and an occasional original = all bases covered.

Enter Blake and Lee.
They worked the above recipe out over 50 years ago as this album shows.

A double CD, recorded live in Europe back in 1966/67 featuring two of jazz's most mystical figures. A singer with a smoky laid back voice that takes you down paths few others have done. Shirley Horn, Sheila Jordan, Blossom Dearie, Norma Winstone have walked these late night streets and Jeanne Lee has done too. Alone, camaraderie in spirit only.

She improvises, sometimes swingingly, sometimes stark and uncompromising. Not much scatting but, when she does, I'm reminded of our best gal Zoë Gilby - uncanny.

Pianist Blake, Lee's collaborator until her death in 2000, is one of the relatively unsung heroes of jazz piano despite a career spanning nearly 6 decades and a worldwide following. His name should be on everyone's lips alongside Monk, Peterson, Garner and all the other great names.

The material is true to the formula and needs to be listened to again and again to appreciate the magic that they draw from each other.
Lance

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About this blog - contact details.

Bebop Spoken Here -- Here, being the north-east of England -- centred in the blues heartland of Newcastle and reaching down to the Tees Delta and looking upwards to the Land of the Kilt.
Not a very original title, I know; not even an accurate one as my taste, whilst centred around the music of Bird and Diz, extends in many directions and I listen to everything from King Oliver to Chick Corea and beyond. Not forgetting the Great American Songbook the contents of which has provided the inspiration for much great jazz and quality popular singing for round about a century.
The idea of this blog is for you to share your thoughts and pass on your comments on discs, gigs, jazz - music in general. If you've been to a gig/concert or heard a CD that knocked you sideways please share your views with us. Tell us about your favourites, your memories, your dislikes.
Lance (Who wishes it to be known that he is not responsible for postings other than his own and that he's not always responsible for them.)
Contact: lanceliddle@gmail.com I look forward to hearing from you.

Submissions for review

Whilst we appreciate the many emails, texts, messages and other communications we receive requesting album/gig reviews on BSH, regrettably, we are unable to reply to all of them other than those we are able to answer with a positive response.
Similarly, CDs received by post will only be considered if accompanied by sufficient background material.
Finally, bear in mind that this is a jazz-based site when submitting your album.
Lance