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Bebop Spoken There

Guy Barker: "You have to play it [the trumpet] every day or you just won't be match-fit." - (Jazz Rag, Winter 2019.)

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Today Friday December 13

Afternoon

Jazz

Vieux CarréJazzmen - Spanish City, Spanish City Plaza, Whitley Bay NE26 1BG. 12 noon. ‘Christmas Jazz Lunch’. Details from 0191 252 9429).

Dean Stockdale Trio - The Merry Monk, 30 Market Place, Bishop Auckland DL14 7NP. 1:00pm. £5.00.

Rendezvous Jazz - Monkseaton Arms, Front Street, Monkseaton NE25 8DP. Tel: 0191 251 3928. 1:00pm. Free.

Evening.

Jazz

‘An Evening of Swing & Sparkle’ - National Glass Centre, Liberty Way, Sunderland SR6 0GL. Tel: 0191 515 5555. 7:30pm. £35.00. Rat Pack evening inc. 4-course meal.

Strictly Smokin’ Big Band - Gosforth Civic Theatre, Regents Farm Road, Gosforth, Newcastle NE3 3HD. Tel: 0191 284 3700. 8:00pm. £12.00. + bf. First night of two.

Chris Dean's Syd Lawrence Orchestra - Yarm School, Stockton TS15 9EJ. Tel: 01642 786023. 7:30pm (6:30pm doors). £18.00. + £1.80. bf (£15.00. + £1.50. bf). 'Mistletoe & Miller'.

Blues, Funk/Soul etc.

Baghdaddies - Cobalt Studios, Boyd Street, NewcastleNE2 1AP. £10.68 (inc. bf). ‘Big Xmas Knees Up’.

Swamp Hoppers - Billy Bootleggers, Nelson St, Newcastle NE1 5AN. 9pm. Free.

George Shovlin & the Acoustic Radars feat. Pat Rafferty + George Pallas & John Wilkins - Whitburn Cricket Club, East Street, Whitburn SR6 7BZ. Tel: 0191 529 3187. 7:30pm (7:00pm doors). £7.50. admission by ticket only (from www.wegottickets.com). 'The Bents Road Sessions'.

Dead Skunk Skiffle & Blues Orchestra + Stetson Five - Station East, Hills Street, Gateshead NE8 2AN. 8:00pm. Free.

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

Monday, July 01, 2019

CD Review: Bill Frisell, Thomas Morgan - Epistrophy

Bill Frisell (guitar); Thomas Morgan (double bass).
(Review by Chris).

A curious ECM offering in the seldom-heard format of a guitar/double bass duo, recorded live at the Village Vanguard, NYC. The guitar is in the experienced hands of the veteran ECM house guitarist of the 80s, Bill Frisell, the bass in the capable hands of the younger Thomas Morgan, whose prolific output includes a lush contribution to the recent stylish Avec Le Temps with Giovanni Guidi

The album comprises varied covers, with the title track and Pannonica by Thelonious Monk at the core. Epistrophy emerges from seemingly random off-kilter plucking and strumming, and epitomizes Frisell’s sophisticated, oblique approach here. Billy Strayhorn’s Lush Life and All in Fun by Kern/Hammerstein  are of an even older vintage and receive a more delay-laden treatment, as does a stately version of You Only Live Twice, all well received by the audience.  Paul Motian’s Mumbo Jumbo is more free fiddly fretwork, with tricky timing tossed in for good measure.

Overall, not a groundbreaking release, more of a low key listen for the guitar geek or dinner party. I have to say I was disappointed, not having listened much to Frisell since the 80’s when I had him down as the unpredictable one of three US “fusion” guitarists (with Abercombie and Scofield). Nowadays he has a reputation for “noodling”, but back in the day he was less restrained and his oblique lines meshed excitingly in contrast with angular and more brutal bandmates, such as on the excellent 1988 Look Out For Hope.   

I won’t be making the trip, but he plays London's Cadogan Hall in October - I’m sure he’ll be compelling live. 
Chris Kilsby
Available now on ECM 2626
Buy/see here. 

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