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Monday, February 18, 2019

East Coast Jazz Jam @ The Exchange, North Shields - Feb 17

Keith Barrett (guitar); 
Bernie Ranson (tenor sax, keyboards); Andrew Porritt (double bass); Sam Young (drums) + Jude Murphy (alto sax, flute, vocals); Dave Weisser (cornet, vocals); Johannes Dalhuijsen (tenor sax, soprano sax)
(Review by Russell)

The East Coast Jazz Jam is a monthly, early evening jam session 'down at the coast'. The Exchange in North Shields stages a wide range of events (theatre, music, cinema) including a couple of jam sessions - one jazz, one blues. Last night, the third Sunday in the month, it was the turn of the former, the jazz jam.

Local resident and Newcastle Jazz Co-op member Keith Barrett decided it was time to arrange a jam session at the coast. Since last year the East Coast Jazz Jam has offered a monthly platform to all-comers and last night two stalwarts of the regional jazz scene - Dave Weisser and Jude Murphy - made the trip from County Durham to lend support and have a blow.

The Exchange café/bar is a comfortable space in which to relax. Locals, cyclists, whoever, they enjoy the ambiance, the well-kept real ales and, on this occasion, there was the jazz to enjoy. Stolen Moments for starters. Weisser and Murphy sat alongside Bernie Ranson who periodically switched from tenor sax to keyboards and back again. Weisser sang a first (always superb) vocal on I Can't Get Started with Murphy on alto. 

Barrett's guitar, Murphy's flute and the double bass playing of the impressive Andrew Porritt more than successfully negotiated Wayne Shorter's Footprints. Half an hour in Johannes Dalhuijsen arrived in time to join the party on Bernie's Tune. During the evening JD would alternate between alto and tenor saxes. Jude Murphy has been known to blow some fine flute and she did so again on Wave to take the session up to a mid-session interval. 

Back to the bar...following an earlier choice of Young's Bitter it was time to try Three Kings' Dark Side of the Toon (a 6% stout). Hmm...not what you'd call a 'session beer'! 

The jam session resumed with Ranson at the keyboard and Dalhuijsen on tenor as Weisser sang A Day in the Life of a Fool. Not to be outdone, Murphy launched into a scatted take on Softly, as in a Morning Sunrise. Well, it had been worth making the trip to the coast! Drummer Sam Young, sound throughout the evening, had his moment in the sun (moonlight?!) with a round of fours on, you've guessed it...Four. The next edition of the East Coast Jazz Jam is scheduled for Sunday 17 March, six o'clock (ish) start.  

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