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Bebop Spoken There

Dick Katz: "Carmen [McRae] would say some pretty caustic things but, so what? There aren't any people who don't talk caustically to each other at some time unless they're Mother Teresa." - (Lesley Gourse: Carmen McRae Miss Jazz - Billboard Books 2001, 2020)

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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".

Postage

11,772 (and counting) posts since we started blogging 12 years ago. 912 of them this year alone and, so far, 49 this month (August 13).

Coming soon ...

August

Saturday 15: Anth Purdy - Prohibition Bar, Pink Lane, Newcastle NE1 5DW. 8:00pm. Free (donations). Purdy’s solo ‘Swing Jazz Guitar’ show. Limited capacity.

Thursday 20: Vieux Carre Jazzmen - The Holystone, Whitley Road, Holystone, North Tyneside NE27 0DA. Tel: 0191 266 6173. 1:00pm. Free.

Maine St. Jazzmen - Sunniside Social Club, 27 Sunniside Rd., Gateshead NE16 5NA. 8:30pm. Free.

Friday 21: Lindsay Hannon - Prohibition Bar, Pink Lane, Newcastle NE1 5DW. 9:00pm. Free (donations). Limited capacity.

Sunday, May 12, 2019

Keswick Jazz & Blues Festival: The Vitality Five - May 10


Michael McQuaid (tenor sax, clarinet, cornet, vocals); David Horniblow (bass sax, clarinet); Andrew Oliver (piano); Tom 'Spats' Langham (banjo); Nick Ball (drums)
(Review by Russell)

The Vitality Five, one of the big draws at Keswick, attracted a full house to Southey St Church for the mid-afternoon set. One change to the line-up - no Martin Wheatley, replaced by the more than capable 'Spats' Langham. The Vitality Five are self-confessed obsessives searching out rare 78s, transcribing the music (the more obscure the better!), trying to outdo one another in the obscurity stakes: Hey! Look what I found the other day!    

The Five's reedsman Michael McQuaid blazed a trail on the opener - That's A Plenty - playing clarinet and maintained the 'hot' start on Jelly Roll's Steamboat Stomp (see photo - l to r McQuaid, Nick Ball, David Horniblow). The Five's members took it in turn to introduce numbers with entertaining and informative insights, none more so than McQuaid revealing he'd recently received an email from the grandson of the New Orleans Owls' Benji White thanking him for researching and performing material from way back. The Vitality Five's collective improvisation did the Owls proud - a match for any present-day 'improvising' musician.   

Pianist Andrew Oliver and bass saxophonist David Horniblow recently embarked upon 'The Complete Morton Project' which involves learning (and recording?) something like one hundred of Jelly Roll Morton's many compositions. Here at Keswick, they played Courthouse Bump, a bass sax feature illustrating Morton's compositional ideas which evidently hold appeal for today's' improvising musicians. 

The multi-talented McQuaid switched to cornet in tribute to Red Nichols as the Five played a hot, hot, hot That's No Bargain. In terms of programme content, presentation and audience engagement the Vitality Five leave many others standing.      
Russell

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