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Bebop Spoken There

Raymond Chandler: “ I was walking the floor and listening to Khatchaturian working in a tractor factory. He called it a violin concerto. I called it a loose fan belt and the hell with it ". The Long Goodbye, Penguin 1959.

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!

Holly Cooper, Mouthpiece Music: "Lance writes pull quotes like no one else!"

Simon Spillett: A lovely review from the dean of jazz bloggers, Lance Liddle...

Josh Weir: I love the writing on bebop spoken here... I think the work you are doing is amazing.


16350 (and counting) posts since we started blogging 16 years ago. 230 of them this year alone and, so far, 27 this month (April 11).

From This Moment On ...


Thu 18: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ The Holystone, Whitley Road, North Tyneside. 1:00pm. Free.
Thu 18: NONUNONU @ Elder Beer Café, Chillingham Road, Newcastle. 7:30pm.
Thu 18: Knats @ Hoochie Coochie, Newcastle. 8:00pm (doors 7:30pm). £8.00. + bf. Support act TBC.
Thu 18: Merlin Roxby @ Prohibition Bar, Newcastle. 8:00pm. Free. A ‘Jar on the Bar’ gig. Ragtime piano.
Thu 18: Tees Hot Club @ Dorman’s Club, Middlesbrough. 8:30pm. Guest band night with Just Friends: Ian Bosworth (guitar); Donna Hewitt (sax); Dave Archbold (keys); Ron Smith (bass); Mark Hawkins (drums).

Fri 19: Cia Tomasso @ The Lit & Phil, Newcastle. 1:00pm. ‘Cia Tomasso sings Billie Holiday’. SOLD OUT!
Fri 19: Classic Swing @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm. Free.
Fri 19: Rendezvous Jazz @ The Monkseaton Arms. 1:00pm. Free.
Fri 19: New Orleans Preservation Jazz Band @ The Oxbridge Hotel, Stockton. 1:00pm. £5.00.
Fri 19: Tweed River Jazz Band @ The Radio Rooms, Berwick. 7:00pm (doors). £5.00.
Fri 19: Lindsay Hannon: Tom Waits for No Man @ Seventeen Nineteen, Hendon, Sunderland. 7:30pm.
Fri 19: Levitation Orchestra + Nauta @ Cluny 2, Newcastle. 7:30pm (doors). £11.00.
Fri 19: Strictly Smokin’ Big Band @ The Witham, Barnard Castle. 8:00pm. ‘Ella & Ellington’.

Sat 20: Record Store Day…at a store near you!
Sat 20: Bright Street Band @ Washington Arts Centre. 6:30pm. Swing dance taster session (6:30pm) followed by Bright Street Big Band (7:30pm). £12.00.
Sat 20: Michael Woods @ Victoria Tunnel, Ouseburn, Newcastle. 7:00pm. Acoustic blues.
Sat 20: Rendezvous Jazz @ St Andrew’s Church, Monkseaton. 7:30pm. £10.00. (inc. a drink on arrival).

Sun 21: Jamie Toms Quartet @ Queen’s Hall, Hexham. 3:00pm.
Sun 21: 4B @ The Ticket Office, Whitley Bay Metro Station. 3:00pm. Free.
Sun 21: Lindsay Hannon: Tom Waits for No Man @ Holy Grale, Durham. 5:00pm.
Sun 21: The Jazz Defenders @ Cluny 2. Doors 6:00pm. £15.00.
Sun 21: Edgar Rubenis @ Prohibition Bar, Newcastle. 7:00pm. Free. A ‘Jar on the Bar’ gig. Blues & ragtime guitar.
Sun 21: Tweed River Jazz Band @ Barrels Ale House, Berwick. 7:00pm. Free.
Sun 21: Art Themen with the Dean Stockdale Trio @ The Globe, Newcastle. 8:00pm. £10.00. +bf. JNE. SOLD OUT!

Mon 22: Harmony Brass @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm. Free.

Tue 23: Vieux Carre Hot 4 @ Victoria & Albert Inn, Seaton Delaval. 12:30-3:30pm. £12.00. ‘St George’s Day Afternoon Tea’. Gig with ‘Lashings of Victoria Sponge Cake, along with sandwiches & scones’.
Tue 23: Jalen Ngonda @ Newcastle University Students’ Union. POSTPONED!

Wed 24: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm. Free.
Wed 24: Darlington Big Band @ Darlington & Simpson Rolling Mills Social Club, Darlington. 7:00pm. Free. Rehearsal session (open to the public).
Wed 24: Sinatra: Raw @ Darlington Hippodrome. 7:30pm. Richard Shelton.
Wed 24: Take it to the Bridge @ The Globe, Newcastle. 7:30pm. Free.
Wed 24: Death Trap @ Theatre Royal, Newcastle. 7:30pm. Rambert Dance Co. Two pieces inc. Goat (inspired by the music of Nina Simone) with on-stage musicians.

Saturday, June 29, 2019

Preview: Ushaw Jazz Festival 2019

(Press release - possibly more names to follow)
Photo credits where known: 
Buck Clayton Legacy Band - Alan Ainsworth.
John Pope Quintet - Ken Drew.
Tony Kofi - Geoff Davies.
Friday 23 August

6pm - Early Bird Big Band - FREE - Francis Thompson Room

The 2018 Ushaw festival opened with the first-ever performance by the Early Bird Big Band. In 2019 the same hugely talented players return to Ushaw, this time joined by more recruits to perform new music under the leadership of festival director Paul Edis.

8pm - Emma Fisk’s Hot Club du Nord - £12/10 - Exhibition Hall

Emma Fisk's Hot Club du Nord brings to life the classic 1930s and 40s repertoire of Django Reinhardt and Stéphane Grappelli's Hot Club de France, conjuring up the swinging gypsy jazz of pre-war Paris with classics such as Belleville, Nuages & Minor Swing.

Featuring 2018 British Jazz Awards nominee Emma Fisk, violin, James Birkett and David Harris, guitars and Bruce Rollo, double bass, the band brings a wealth of knowledge and love of the hot club/gypsy jazz style and a joy in the music that is absolutely infectious!
A treat for connoisseurs of swinging, string jazz, fans of acoustic music in all its variety and lovers of all things vintage!

Saturday 24 August

1pm - Jo Harrop with the Paul Edis Trio - £10 Francis Thompson Room

Described as a 'velvet-voiced' singer, Jo is a rising star in the UK and Europe.
She’s performed at venues across the capital (including the Royal Albert Hall, 606 Club, Pizza Express, the Hideaway) and at festivals and clubs all over the UK, headlining Scarborough Jazz Festival, Burton Agnes Jazz and Blues Festival and performing at Sage Gateshead as part of A Jazzy Christmas.

Harrop joins ‘Brilliant young pianist' Paul Edis and virtuosos Andy Champion (double bass) and Russ Morgan (drums) to perform swinging music rooted in the straight-ahead tradition.

2pm - Improvisation Workshop with Matt Anderson - £10

*Calling musicians aged 18 and above looking to learn more about improvisation*

Saxophonist Matt Anderson teaches at the Junior Royal Academy of Music, London, University of Leeds and Leeds College of Music and works regularly with adult learners and community organisations including Jazz at HEART and Cambridge Jazz Co-operative.

To take part in the workshop please bring anything you’ll need to perform.
A PA for singers and a piano will be provided. Any sheet music and resources will be provided but it’s worth bringing a notepad and pencil.

Workshop runs from 2-5pm with a public performance at 5:30pm. Places limited - book now!
In addition to buying a ticket, please get in touch with Ushaw to let us know what you play and details of any prior experience. Email:

4pm - Xhosa Cole/Francis Tulip Quintet - £8 - Exhibition Hall
Led by BBC Young Jazz Musician of the Year Xhosa Cole alongside the prodigiously talented Durham-born guitarist Francis Tulip, the quintet pays homage to the jazz tradition, including the influences of Thelonious Monk and John Coltrane alongside inventive contemporary original compositions. 

Xhosa Cole - tenor
Francis Tulip -guitar
Will Markham- piano
Shivraj Singh- bass
Kai Chareunsy - drums

6pm - Matt Anderson and Paul Edis - £6 - Francis Thompson Room

Originally hailing from the North Yorkshire Moors, London-based saxophonist and
Dankworth Prize-winning composer Matt Anderson released his second critically-acclaimed album Rambling last year. 

Since its launch at the hotbed of the creative London jazz scene, the Vortex Jazz Club, the album has won praise from the likes of Jazzwise, BBC Radio 3 and Jazz FM for its 'outstanding' melodic writing and 'uniformly excellent playing' all fronted by Matt’s warm tenor sound. Rooted in a deep love of and respect for the jazz tradition from Sonny Rollins to Wayne Shorter, Matt’s music also explores influences from the folk music of his rural upbringing, alongside bluesy, country elements reminiscent of Bill Frisell and British and European jazz.

In recent years Matt has worked regularly with pianist Paul Edis performing as a duo, as guest soloist/tutor with Sage Gateshead's youth jazz ensemble Jambone and as part of 'A Jazzy Christmas'.   

8pm - Tony Kofi and the Organisation - £14/12 - Exhibition Hall

Tony Kofi is a British jazz multi-instrumentalist born of Ghanaian parents, a player of the alto, baritone, soprano and tenor saxophones and flute. Having cut his teeth in the Jazz Warriors of the early 90s, award-winning saxophonist Tony Kofi has gone on to establish himself as a musician, teacher and composer of some authority. As well as performing and recording with Gary Crosby's Nu-Troop and Jazz Jamaica, Tony's playing has also been a feature of many bands and artists he has worked/recorded with including US3, the World Saxophone Quartet, Courtney Pine, Donald Byrd, Eddie Henderson, the David Murray Big Band, Sam Rivers Rivbea Big Band, Andrew Hill Big Band, Abdullah Ibrahim, Macy Gray, Julian Joseph Big Band, Harry Connick Jr, Byron Wallen's Indigo, Jamaaladeen Tacuma's Coltrane Configurations and Ornette Coleman.

The origins of the Organisation go back over a decade and grew from Simon Fernsby’s memorable Manhattan Project sessions which were a staple of jazz in South London throughout the 2000s. 

Drummer Pete Cater was an early recruit having been a jazz tutor on Fernsby’s music college course. The band went through several incarnations and with the addition of organist Pete Whittaker honed its no-nonsense, hard-hitting style maintaining residencies and working as the house rhythm section at many venues and festivals. 

Throughout this time they worked with many of London’s leading jazz musicians yet despite associations with several distinguished players did not become a regular quartet until a serendipitous meeting with saxophonist Tony Kofi in August 2010. 

This association with Tony was the result of a last minute dep at Kent jazz institution the Eagle Tavern (Tony fresh from recording with Ornette Coleman in New York!). Playing both alto and baritone on the date there was an instant affinity between the players, the Organisation’s combination of both the bluesy, soul jazz side of the Hammond canon, and their knowledge of the more modern post-bop side of the repertoire (as typified by Woody Shaw’s Moontrane) working perfectly with Tony’s approach. 

It is to the credit of all the musicians that they have played a long game, developing their craft and style on the UK jazz circuit and the sounds you will hear are the sounds of a band who have put the hours in and held an ace in their collective hand until the moment to play it was just right.

10pm - Jam Session - FREE - Francis Thompson Room

Bring your horn and join in with the house band until midnight. Alternatively, come along to hear who might get up to perform. The jam session at the Ushaw Festival has produced some of the most interesting and unexpected combinations in recent years!

House trio: Paul Edis (piano) Paul Grainger (double bass) & Russ Morgan (drums).

Sunday 25 August
1pm - Zoë Gilby Family All Stars - £20 family ticket (two adults and two children), otherwise £6 per person  Francis Thompson Room

A show especially for children and families of all ages. A jazztastic 50-minute show, performing recognisable tunes with jazz standards and many opportunities for interaction and participation. A huge success at London Jazz Festival, Sage Gateshead International Jazz Festival, Cleethorpes Jazz Festival and Hull Jazz Festival

2:30pm - VHB - FREE - Francis Thompson Room

VHB is an up-and-coming contemporary jazz collective which formed in 2018 after meeting at the University of York. They play original tunes blending elements of jazz, funk, hip-hop, and gospel as well as re-imagined versions of classic jazz standards, owing as much to J Dilla as to John Coltrane. If you like Ezra Collective, Alfa Mist, Robert Glasper or Kamasi Washington then VHB is a band you should check out!

Faye Thompson - Alto Sax
Marko Marsenic - Tenor Sax
Rebecca Hall - Keys
Cameron McArthur - Synths/Synth Bass
Susan Rutter - Drums

4pm - John Pope Quintet - £8 - Francis Thompson Room

Drawing on 1960s avant-jazz and hard bop, but with a modern, European sensibility, their open-hearted, quirky compositions and dynamic, ‘anything-goes’ improvisations are played with swinging groove, referencing Ornette Coleman, Tom Waits and the Pixies: a joyful racket full of rewards for the adventurous listener.

John Pope  (double bass); Chris Biscoe (alto sax); Faye MacCalman (tenor sax), clarinet); Graham Hardy (trumpet); Johnny Hunter (drums). 

7pm – Buck Clayton Legacy Band – Ellington and Hodges - £14/12 – Exhibition Theatre

The great swing trumpeter Buck Clayton made his reputation in the cut-throat jam sessions and all-night blues clubs of 1930s Kansas City. In later years he kept the traditions of the great blues shouters alive touring Europe and the UK with his own octet together with such singers as Jimmy Rushing, Big Joe Turner and Jimmy Witherspoon. 

The Buck Clayton Legacy Band, formed in 2004 by bassist Alyn Shipton and saxophonist Matthias Seuffert to revisit Clayton’s music delves into that Kansas City Legacy. They turn their concerts into a speakeasy in the grand tradition of the Reno and Woodside clubs immortalised by Count Basie. 

Menno Daams, Ian Smith (trumpets); Robert Fowler (tenor sax); Matthias Seuffert (alto sax); Adrian Fry (trombone); Martin Litton (piano); Alyn Shipton (double bass); Bobby Worth (drums).  
Tickets on sale now - visit

WEEKEND TICKET £60 (admission to every gig during the weekend)
SATURDAY TICKET £30 (admission to every gig on Saturday, a saving of £8)
SUNDAY TICKET £20 (admission to every gig on Sunday, a saving of £8)*  

* Please note: Sunday ticket does not admit to Zoë Gilby Family All-Stars. Admission is £20 family ticket (two adults and two children) or £6 individual ticket.   

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