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Bebop Spoken There

Camila Meza: "Some tonalities or chords are colors to me: G major is blue, D major is orange and B minor is totally yellow." - (DownBeat July 2019)

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Today Sunday June 16

Birthday wishes to Steve H.

Afternoon

Jazz

Vieux Carré Hot 4 - Spanish City, Spanish City Plaza, Whitley Bay NE26 1BG. 12 noon. Free.

Musicians Unlimited - Park Inn, Park Road, Hartlepool TS26 9HU. Tel: 01429 233126. 1:00pm (doors 12 noon). Free.

Alice Grace & Ben Helm - Bonbar, Fenkle St., Newcastle NE1 5XU. Tel: 0191 232 8695. 1:30pm.

Jazz Social - Charts, Quayside, Newcastle NE1 3DX. Tel: 0191 338 7989. 4:00pm. Free.

Blues/Funk/Soul

The Panthers - Billy Bootleggers, Nelson St, Newcastle NE1 5AN. 3:00pm. Free.

Sour Mash Trio - The Schooner, South Shore Road, Gateshead NE8 3AF. 5:00pm. Free.

Evening

Customs House Big Band - Customs House, Mill Dam, South Shields NE33 1ES. Tel: 0191 454 1234. 6:00pm. £13.00. ‘Swing on a Summer’s Evening’. The band’s 20th anniversary concert.

East Coast Jazz Jam - The Exchange, Howard Street, North Shields NE30 1SE. Tel: 0191 258 4111. 6:00pm. Free.

Gerry Richardson Quartet - The Globe, Railway Street, Newcastle NE4 7AD. 7:30pm. £6.00. ( (£3.00. student).

DU Jazz Soc jam session - Fabio’s Bar, Saddler St, Durham DH13NP. Tel: 0191 383 9290. 7:30pm. Free.

Francis Tulip Quartet - Black Bull, Bridge Street, Blaydon NE21 4JJ. Tel: 0191 414 2846. 7:30pm. £7.00. Line-up: Francis Tulip (guitar); Ben Lawrence (piano); John Pope (bass); Matt MacKellar (drums)

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

Sunday, April 28, 2019

John McLaughlin and the 4th Dimension @ the Barbican, London – April 23.

John McLaughlin (guitar, vocals); Gary Husband (keyboards, drums, vocals); Etienne M'bappe (bass, vocals); Ranjit Barot (drums, vocals).
(Review by Steve T)

The person who introduced the show observed that you can punctuate your life via the different phases of John McLaughlin. My own experience of the uber guitarist has been more intermittent, with my first in ‘73, two in the mid-nineties and three in the last four years.

I thought we might get some more Mahavishnu Orchestra and they opened with Trilogy, the long piece from Between Nothingness and Eternity (1973), with some added konnakol singing from Ranjit Barot, variously described as Indian scat singing and Indian drum language.

Thereafter, the set was drawn from across his long career, including Love and Understanding from Electric Dreams (1979) and Pharoah Saunder's The Creator Has a Masterplan, which he originally covered on the album he shared with Carlos Santana (also ‘73).
Most of the rest was perfectly enjoyable but, as with much post-seventies fusion, tended to blend into each other, despite inspired musicianship by all concerned. This more or less culminated in the inevitable drawn-out drum duel between Barot and Husband, some more konnakol breaking it up.

After the golden age of rock concerts, drum solos more or less fell out of favour and, while I welcome their recent return, I prefer the concise variety.

A welcome encore but a disappointment that he didn't dip back into the Mahavishnu catalogue, choosing something written by Husband he described, rather dubiously, as rock and roll.

They received an appropriate level of adulation from an ever so nearly sell-out Barbican. At seventy-seven, he's still mighty impressive, though noticeably less so than four years ago or eighteen months ago, which was precisely the motivation for the trip. A final homage to an extraordinary musician and artist who had a massive impact on me all those years ago.

I won't be travelling any distance to see this band again, but don't bet against future collaborations with old sparring partners, including Zakir Hussain, Chick Corea, Jean Luc Ponty, Al DeMiola, Santana, Kenny Garrett, Trilok Gurtu, Stanley Clarke, Joey De Francesco, Christian McBride, L Shankar, Narada Michael Walden, Dave Holland, Billy Cobham, Jan Hammer, Rick Laird, Jerry Goodman etc etc ad infinitum.    
Steve T.

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