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Bebop Spoken There

Cécile McLorin Salvant: "She [Melissa Aldana] makes us realise how terrible it is to be complacent." - (DownBeat July 2019)

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Today Thursday June 20

Afternoon

Jazz

Vieux Carré Jazzmen - Holystone, Whitley Rd., Holystone NE27 0DA. Tel: 0191 266 6173. 1:00pm. Free.

Evening

Jazz

Jeremy McMurray & the Pocket Jazz Orchestra - Arc, Dovecot St., Stockton on Tees TS18 1LL. Tel: 01642 525199. 7:00pm. £12.00. + £0.10. bf. ‘Jazz & Tapas’ - booking essential.

Ruth Lambert Quartet - St James' & St Basil's Church, Fenham Hall Drive, Fenham, Newcastle NE4 9EJ. 7:30pm. £8.00.

Heller-Glendinning: Billie Meets Kurt - The Globe, Railway Street, Newcastle NE4 7AD. 7:30pm (doors). £6.00. (£3.00. student).

Acoustic Infusion - The Forum, Borough Road, Darlington DL1 1SG. Tel: 01325 363135. 7:30pm. £5.00. Line-up: Alan Thompson (tenor sax); Rick Laughlin (piano); Bruce Rollo (double bass); Ian Halford (drums). Now Abbie Finn on drums.

Durham University Concert Band + Grollingwood Big Band - Durham Town Hall, Market Place, Durham DH1 3NJ. 7:30pm. £10.00., £9.00., £8.00.

Durham University Big Band - Black Swan Bar, Newcastle Arts Centre, Westgate Road, Newcastle NE1 1SG. Tel: 0191 222 9882. 8:00pm. £6.00. (£5.00 concs.). JNE.

Tees Hot Club w. Gus Smith (vocals); Donna Hewitt (tenor sax), Dave Archbold (keys) - Dormans Club, Oxford Road, Middlesbrough TS5 5DT. Tel: 01642 823813. 8:30pm. Free.

Maine Street Jazzmen - Sunniside Social Club, Hollywell Lane, Sunniside, Gateshead NE16 5NA. Tel: 0191 488 7347. 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.

Saturday, February 09, 2019

Alan Barnes @ The Traveller's Rest, Darlington - Feb 8

Alan Barnes (alto sax, baritone sax, clarinet); Paul Edis (piano); Andy Champion (double bass); Russ Morgan (drums)
(Review by Russell)

Opus 4 Jazz Club's February concert attracted a full house. And little wonder, with Alan Barnes on the premises! The hugely popular reeds virtuoso enjoys his annual visit to the Traveller's Rest and this Friday evening engagement, working once again with pianist and good friend Paul Edis, would prove to be no different. 

As Barnes announced the first number - Joy Spring - long-time supporter Dennis arrived, waving regally to one and all. Our guest star is a master of side-splitting one-liners, add straight man Dennis to the equation and you've got the makings of a memorable night of superb jazz and hilarious repartee. From alto on Clifford Brown's well-loved number - with a cheering audience behind him all the way - to the first of several baritone features on Time After Time, the evening was shaping up as a Gig of the Year contender. 

Jobim's late-fifties bossa A felicidade found Barnes switching to clarinet on a number which featured towering contributions from Edis and drummer Russ Morgan, the latter showing how it's done with brushes and hands, exemplary musicianship. More clarinet on In a Sentimental Mood* with scribbled notes referring to Edis' 'perfect' solo and a further note - 'wow!' - pertaining to Andy Champion's imperious bass playing. 

The interval: a dash to the downstairs' bar, the queue a mile long. On the tv, Aston Villa 0 Sheffield United 3, with little more than fifteen minutes to go, game over.** Another pint of Young's more than acceptable American-style IPA, the raffle, better luck next time, then back to Mr A Barnes with the Paul Edis Trio. 

Cole Porter's Everything I Love, replete with quotes, resumed matters with Opus 4's guest once again grappling with his baritone sax. Sticking with the big beast, Barnes and co-found themselves On Green Dolphin Street. No strolling here, this was an eyeballs-out sprint to the finish. Absolutely brilliant, the journey from Newcastle had been more than worthwhile...as if it had been in any doubt!

In suggesting Detox Ahead as an alternative title to Johnny Frigo's Detour Ahead, Barnes mused, for a nanosecond, on the possibility of a detox before summarily dismissing such a nonsensical idea!  
    
Cedar Walton recorded Bolivia with Bob Berg, Sam Jones and Billy Higgins. Well, here in the Cockerton suburb of Darlington, Messrs Barnes, Edis, Champion and Morgan were more than a match for the illustrious Americans. To close a memorable evening Barnes conducted a straw poll. By popular demand, a blues won out. The late-night journey home was a 'cloud nine' affair. 

* Earlier in the day Barnes listened to a recording of Lucky Thompson on alto playing In a Sentimental Mood and decided to include Ellington's number in the evening's set list.

** Three Aston Villa goals in the last eight minutes secured an unlikely point for the home team. 
Russell

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