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Bebop Spoken There

Pat Thomas: “He’s definitely one to watch, he's going to be a breath of fresh air for the jazz scene. What I like is he [Xhosa Cole] plays like Dexter Gordon and Sonny Rollins - you don't hear anybody come from that. He knows tunes like "Fried Bananas" by Dexter Gordon and he can play free as well." - (The Wire September 2021)

The Things They Say!

Hudson Music: Lance's "Bebop Spoken Here" is one of the heaviest and most influential jazz blogs in the UK.

Rupert Burley (Dynamic Agency): "BSH just goes from strength to strength".

'606' Club: "A toast to Lance Liddle of the terrific jazz blog 'Bebop Spoken Here'"

The Strictly Smokin' Big Band included Be Bop Spoken Here (sic) in their 5 Favourite Jazz Blogs.
Ann Braithwaite (Braithwaite & Katz Communications) You’re the BEST! --

Postage

13,685 (and counting) posts since we started blogging 13 years ago. 1102 of them this year alone and, so far, 46 this month (Sept. 13).

From This Moment On ...

September

Fri 17: Classic Swing @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.
Fri 17: Rendezvous Jazz @ Monkseaton Arms, Monkseaton. 1:00pm.
Fri 17: New Orleans Preservation Jazz Band @ Oxbridge Hotel, Stockton. 1:00pm.
Fri 17: Abbie Finn's Finntet @ Traveller's Rest, Cockerton, Darlington. 8:00pm.

Sat 18: Baghdaddies @ The Globe, Newcastle. 8:00pm.
Sat 18: David Gray Trio @ Prohibition Bar, Newcastle. 8:00pm.

Sun 19: Vieux Carré Hot 4 @ Spanish City, Whitley Bay. 12 noon.
Sun 19: Musicians Unlimited @ South Durham Social Club, Westbourne Road, Hartlepool TS25 5RB. 1:00pm. South Durham Social Club aka Steelworks or Steelies. New venue for Teesside's premier big band.
Sun 19: Hand to Mouth: Lindsay Hannon & Bradley Johnston @ St James' & St Basil's Church, Newcastle. 3:00pm.
Sun 19: Green Tangerines + Knats @ Punch Bowl Hotel, Newcastle. 3:30pm.
Sun 19: Alice Grace Quartet @ The Globe, Newcastle. 8:00pm.

Mon 20: Jazz in the Afternoon @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.

Wed 22: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.
Wed 22: Darlington Big Band @ Rolling Mills Social Club, Darlington. 7:00pm. Rehearsal session (open to the public)
Wed 22: Take it to the Bridge @ The Globe, Newcastle. 8:00pm. Celebrating TITTB's 20th anniversary & Dave Weisser's forthcoming birthday! Limited gig tickets (£1.00.). Free live stream. www.jazz.coop.

Thu 23: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ The Holystone, North Tyneside. 1:00pm.
Thu 23: Jeremy McMurray & the Jazz Pocket Orchestra @ Middlesbrough Town Hall 8:00pm. .
Thu 23: Maine Street Jazzmen @ Sunniside Social Club, Sunniside, Gateshead. 8:30pm. .

Fri 24: Sue Ferris Quintet @ Gala Theatre, Durham. 1:00pm.
Fri 24: Classic Swing @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.
Fri 24: Rendezvous Jazz @ Monkseaton Arms, Monkseaton. 1:00pm.
Fri 24: New Orleans Preservation Jazz Band, Stockton. 1:00pm.
Fri 24: FILM: Jazz on a Summer's Day + Swing Bridge Trio (in the bar) @ Forum Cinema, Hexham. 7:00pm.

Wednesday, May 08, 2019

Cheltenham Jazz Festival: Vula Viel @ Parabola Arts Centre – May 5


Bex Burch (gyil); Ruth Goller (bass guitar); Jim Hart (drums).
(Review by Steve T)

I'd heard that Vula Viel - pronounced Vi-E-l - had shrunk to a trio since I saw them at the Scarborough Jazz Festival a few years back. I wasn't sure how that would work and read somewhere they were diminished a little, but was encouraged when Jazzwise gave their new album 4 stars; just one less than A Kind of Blue.


I couldn't remember the line-up from Scarborough and, when checking the credits on the first album didn't help, I asked the lady herself after the gig. She confirmed they were a quintet featuring bass synth, two drummers and sax. Here they had a fantastic busy drummer and, since the gyil (Ghanaian xylophone) is essentially a percussion instrument - and they displayed what seemed incredibly complicated interplay between the two - I heard no need for another kit man.

However, I definitely think a sax would have filled it out as it occasionally seemed one dimensional, repeated bass features and lots of drumming, if anything, drawing attention to the fact that they were essentially a woman down.

Not that I didn't enjoy it, and the threat of some ethnicity and some sisterhood is always a compelling argument in persuading Mrs T to agree. I'd already suggested she download/stream/ whatever the new album format, but apparently, her phone needed charging so it was a CD to the rescue again. 

Bex is extremely charismatic on stage, loosening up and limbering up ‘til she's bouncing around her instrument like a prize-fighter, her hair bobbing in double time. Most of the set was drawn from the new album, though they did dip into the debut and this would be the one I would recommend first.

At Scarborough, her introductions were interspersed with tales of her time in the African village where she learned to build and play her instrument, but here she seemed reluctant to do so, restricting it to one mention towards the end. I've no doubt her enthusiasm, commitment and passion is undiminished, so she shouldn't shy away from it since the dialogue actually helps bring the music to life.

I look forward very much to their arrival at one of the venues in the North East, but I think she may reconsider filling out the sound with reeds: soprano or flute, maybe with a baritone as well; or something from the guitar family, violin or cello. The possibilities are endless. 
Steve T.


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