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Bebop Spoken There

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11,644 (and counting) posts since we started blogging just over 12 years ago. 779 of them this year alone and, so far, 43 this month (July 11).

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As we all know there are no live gigs taking place in the immediate future. However, any links to jazz streaming that are deemed suitable - i.e. with a professional approach - will be considered for posting.

Sunday, March 17, 2019

King Bees @ Bar Loco, Newcastle - Mar 16

Michael Littlefield (guitar, vocals); Scott Taylor (harmonica, guitar, vocals); Dominic Hornsby (piano, guitar, vocals); Simon Hedley (double bass); Giles Holt ((drums) 
(Review by Russell)

Wherever King Bees go their audience follows. Having recently ended a successful monthly residency at Billy Bootleggers the Newcastle based blues band is shortly to begin an exciting new residency elsewhere in town.This Saturday evening saw a return to the uber cool Bar Loco located no more than a Frank Brennan no-nonsense clearance over the old East Stand at St James' Park (Frank who? Ask your dad!).

Juke for openers, a kind of ritual instrumental loosener for King Bees. Ace harp frontman Scott Taylor shared the vocals with Michael Littlefield and, occasionally, pianist Dom Hornsby;  variously I Don't Know (Taylor), Cuckoo (Littlefield), Just a Feeling and Heart Hearted Woman (Taylor) with Hornsby insisting I'm in Love with you, baby. A typical night with the best blues band in town. Hearing the same material time and again doesn't dull the appetite, on the contrary, it's a compare and contrast exercise - these guys really are upholding Tyneside's rich history of rhythm and blues.
Sonny Boy's Keep it to Yourself heard Taylor's harp and vocals at their best as he called out: Take it home boys! Straight in to Hornsby's feature on Kansas City and before long Littlefield closed a great first set bellowing Caledonia!  

Earier in the day, the Toon grabbed a late, late equaliser down on the south coast. One wondered if Teresa Watson's gig across town at Billy Bootleggers was holding its own with King Bees the obvious counter attraction...probably, Tyneside's blues audience is large enough to support two top-class gigs on the same night. 

Sit Down BabyMy BabeAutomatic Woman, yes, the second set proved every bit as good as the first. Rocket 88 made a case for the number of the night, mind you, with Hornsby on rhythm guitar Freddie King's Hideaway pushed it close as did Little Walter's Boom, Boom (Out Goes the Lights). You know it's time to head home when King Bees give you a Muddy Waters' one-two - Hoochie Coochie Man and Mojo. It had been another terrific night with King Bees. 
Russell

Starting Friday 5 April King Bees will be resident first Friday in the month at the Blind Pig Blues Club. And the first one is a special - it's Muddy Waters all night long! Lee Bates will play an acoustic support set, it has all the makings of a great night. There is an admission charge of £7, however, Michael Littlefield insisted they will not enforce the door entry charge - pay what you like, the man said. Oh, yes, you'll find the Blind Pig at 25 Pink Lane, formerly the Jazz Cafe, now Prohibition Bar. Blues lives!     

1 comment :

Unknown said...

Hi, thanks for review! Please come say hi as I feel we've hardly spoke? Apologies for delay in starting on Saturday my amp decided to blow its fuse at half eight as I turned it on...

Couple things on the club...

1)we are delaying the muddy thing till June, so April will be kingbees plus Lee Bates, suggested door tax of a fiver.
2)there will be certain gigs the door charge at blind pig will be enforced through tickets to pay the musicians, however certainly the kingbees gigs will be 'pay if you can' events for the moment. As you can probably tell, I haven't quite worked out how I can make this work yet, but the atmosphere I want in the place is all inclusive - I want everyone to enjoy it and not worry if they can't afford the door tax one month? We'll see how it works out. The money we make will pay our expenses as musicians and go back into the club to book some other players from outside town when we can...

We want to make more of our gigs this year self supported, whereby the audience pay for the music (if they can) and we aren't relying on venues to pay us? We haven't worked out the best way to do this but we're giving it a go and hopefully we can work something out so everyone's happy!

All the best, Michael

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