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Bebop Spoken There

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Sunday, January 20, 2019

The House of the Black Gardenia @ the New Prohibition Cabaret Bar - Jan. 19.

Bobbi Charleston (vocals/washboard); Michael Lamb (trumpet); Keiran Parnaby (trombone); Keith Robinson (soprano/alto/tenor saxes/ clarinet); Katja Roberts (violin); Marcus Tham (keys); Michael Littlefield (guitar/banjo/vocals); Neil Hopper (bass/sousaphone); Giles Holt (drums).
(Review by Lance)
PHOTOS

They were all there, lined up against the wall. "Legs" Diamond, "Machine Gun" Kelly, "Baby Face" Nelson, John Dillinger, Bonnie and Clyde and a few hoods, torpedoes and their molls from across the river.  This wasn't the St. Valentine's Day Massacre - it was still only January - it was the grand opening of the new Prohibition Cabaret Bar that, until a few weeks ago, had been the Jazz Café. Entrepreneur Mitch has moved his operation lock, stock and barrel from a railway arch on the south side to the Pink Lane venue conveniently sited near Newcastle Central Station for those who might need to make a quick getaway.

We checked our violin cases at the door, surprisingly, only one contained a violin - that of Katja who not only fiddled whilst the Gardenias burned but also did a little shimmying on the postage stamp dance floor. I understand Katja's sister wishes that she too could shimmy like that.

For opening night, the first "Signature Drink" was on the house - we opted for a Gin Sour before elbowing our way to a ringside table. It was a two house show and both were sold out - a tribute to the band and the venue.

The programme was fairly predictable and none the worse for that - why change a winning team? and, although there were a couple of ringers on trombone and drums neither let the side down. Great vocals from Bobbi and Michael Littlefield plus super solos all round.

On the dance floor, apart from Katja and her friend, Geoff and Mim, with whom we shared a table, also did some fancy struttin', adding to the atmosphere. This all took place on the ground floor but the upstairs too has been refurbished - if Crombie could only see it now!

A great night, the only disappointment was that it wasn't raided by the Feds!

The Mooche; Blue Drag; Viper Mad; Russian Caravan; You're my Girl; Graveyard Shift; Joshua Fit the Battle of Jericho; Ain't it Hard?; Evenin'; Why Don't You Do Right? and Skirts.
Lance.

2 comments :

Jude (on F/b) said...

We were in the second house. Fabulous. And I can confirm a raid by the Feds was nowhere in sight (unlike for poor Keith, back in the day!)

Patti (on F/b) said...

It was indeed. Loved it all.

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