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Bebop Spoken There

Brian Dee: "I feel my generation had one advantage over today's players in that we were not musically educated in colleges, so we all sounded different. I could tell who it was just by the sound." - (Jazz Rag, Summer 2020).

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11,783 (and counting) posts since we started blogging 12 years ago. 1023 of them this year alone and, so far, 50 this month (Sept. 17).

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SEPTEMBER

IT IS ADVISABLE TO CHECK IN ADVANCE WITH THE VENUE THAT THE GIG IS ON

SATURDAY

Happy Birthday Katy Trigger & Mia Webb.

SUNDAY 20

Vieux Carre Hot 4 - Spanish City, Spanish City Plaza, Whitley Bay NE26 1BG. Tel: 0191 691 7090. 12 noon. Free.

Riviera Quartet - The Globe, 11 Railway St., Newcastle NE4 7AD. 8:00pm. A limited number of seats are available which MUST be bought in advance online. £7:50 or £5:45 live stream only.

THURSDAY 24

Vieux Carre Jazzmen - The Holystone, Whitley Road, North Tyneside NE27 0DA. 0191 266 6173. 1:00pm. Free.

Maine St Jazzmen - Sunniside Social Club, Sunniside Road, Sunniside NE16 5NA. Tel: 0191 488 7347. 8:00pm - 10pm. Free. Note earlier start/finish.

Monday, May 06, 2019

Darlington Jazz Festival: New Century Ragtime Orchestra with Enrico Tomasso @ St Augustine's Parish Centre - May 4


(Review by Russell)

Jazz in the Quakerhouse, jazz along at Joseph Pease statue, jazz at St Augustine's...decisions, decisions. Opting for the latter, the Larchfield Street Parish Centre venue couldn't have been busier. Indeed the 100+ attendance set a new record at Darlington's flourishing New Orleans Jazz Club and little wonder with the New Century Ragtime Orchestra's star guests being none other than Enrico Tomasso, Nick Ward and Ruth Lambert. 

The full house lapped up two balanced sets of classic material and popular songs of the day interspersed with some vocal numbers from our vocal triumvirate. The New Century's 'boy vocalist' Jim McBriarty led the way in the vocal stakes singing My Sweet Tooth Says Yes (but my Wisdom Tooth Says No). A good start, there would be more singing from McBriarty and the band's special guests. 
The classic material included Black and Tan Fantasy with, as MC Steve Andrews explained, the saxophone solo harmonised for the reeds' section - Messrs Andrews, Gavin Lee, Alan Marshall, the aforementioned McBriarty and the exceptional Tomasso (trumpet and Louis Armstrong-like vocals). West End Blues is one of those iconic numbers that most trumpeters likely as not shy away from but not Tomasso! An approximation of Armstrong's legendary performance would have sufficed yet hearing Tomasso's masterful recreation at this year's Darlington Jazz Festival will take some beating! 

The Benny Moten Kansas City Orchestra's Rumba Negro, more Ellington with, as Andrews teased his bandmates, Arthur Whetsol, Barney Bigard and 'Tricky' Sam Nanton (actually Tomasso, Lee and Neville Hartley!) playing Black Beauty and a superb Patrol Wagon Blues with Red Allen trumpet and vocals by Rico Tomasso accompanied by percussion wizard Nick Ward's immaculate brushwork were just three highlights during an afternoon of highlights.  

The NCRO's guest band vocalist Ruth Lambert sat to one side chuckling along with the crowded room as MC Andrews kept the one-liners coming. From time to time the Tyneside-based singer, rightly described by Andrews as 'one of England's premier vocalists', joined the ensemble to sing a selection including That's You, BabyMad about the Boy and, in an unexpected departure, a wonderful small group (most of the boys vacated the stage seeking liquid refreshment) vocal rendition of Skylark accompanied by Andrew's fluttering, soaring clarinet. 

Gone three o'clock the New Century Ragtime Orchestra said good afternoon to an appreciative, attentive audience with a rousing Limehouse Blues.
Russell                 
New Century Ragtime Orchestra: Jim McBriarty, Alan Marshall, Gavin Lee, Steve Andrews (reeds); Enrico Tomasso (trumpet, vocals); Dave Hignett (trumpet); Neville Hartley (trombone); Colin Haikney (piano); Keith Stephen (guitar, banjo); Phil Rutherford (tuba); Nick Ward (drums); Ruth Lambert (vocals)

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