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Bebop Spoken There

John Scofield: "I like architecture that lends itself to improvisation." - (Jazzwise November, 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

13,837 (and counting) posts since we started blogging 13 years ago. 1254 of them this year alone and, so far, 66 this month (Oct. 23).

From This Moment On ...

October

Tue 26: Classic Swing @ Ship inn, Monkseaton. 1:00pm. The post-lockdown resumption of the band’s weekly residency will be fortnightly until further notice.
Tue 26: Jam session @ Black Swan, Newcastle Arts Centre. 8:00pm. The post-lockdown resumption of the Black Swan’s fortnightly jam session.

Wed 27: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.
Wed 27: Darlington Big Band @ Darlington & Simpson Rolling Mills Club, Darlington. 7:00pm. Rehearsal session (open to the public).
Wed 27: Take it to the Bridge @ The Globe, Newcastle. 7:30pm.

Thu 28: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ The Holystone, North Tyneside. 1:00pm.
Thu 28: J Frisco @ Newcastle University. 1:15pm. ONLINE ONLY (YouTube).
Thu 28: ’58 Jazz Collective @ Hops & Cheese, Hartlepool. 7:30pm.
Thu 28: Maine Street Jazzmen @ Sunniside Social Club, Gateshead. 8:30pm.
Thu 28: Tees Hot Club @ Dorman's Club, Middlesbrough. 9:00pm.

Fri 29: James Birkett & Bradley Johnston @ Gala Theatre, Durham. 1:00pm..
Fri 29: Classic Swing @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm..
Fri 29: Rendezvous Jazz @ Monkseaton Arms, Monkseaton. 1:00pm..
Fri 29: New Orleans Preservation Jazz Band @ Oxbridge Hotel, Stockton. 1:00pm.

Sun 31 Vieux Carré Hot 4 @ Spanish City, Whitley Bay. 12 noon..
Sun 31: Musicians Unlimited @ South Durham Social Club, Hartlepool. 1:00pm. .
Sun 31: More Jam @ The Globe, Newcastle. 3:00pm. Jam session..
Sun 31: Alison Rayner Quintet @ The Globe, Newcastle. 8:00pm.

November

Mon 01: Jazz in the Afternoon @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.

Tuesday, September 24, 2019

CD Review: Peter Eldridge and Kenny Werner – Somewhere


Peter Eldridge (vocal); Kenny Werner (piano); Matt Aronoff (bass); Yoron Israel (drums) + 20 piece string orchestra conducted by Eugene Friesen.
(Review by James Henry)

"Somewhere" is a gentle, soothing offering from Peter Eldridge, Kenny Werner and a string orchestra, the culmination of an idea shared by  Eldridge and Werner that began about 10 years ago.  It would be terribly easy to combine Eldridge’s crooning baritone voice, Werner’s gentle piano fills and a string orchestra to recreate Frank Sinatra or Nat King Cole: thankfully, this CD doesn’t seek to do this. "Somewhere" is a fresh interpretation of song, strings, and soothing, gentle jazz; it is an antidote to the troubled times in which we live.   

Kenny Werner is an accomplished jazz pianist, composer and educator, possibly best known for his seminal book “Effortless Mastery, Liberating the Master Musician Within”, the closest thing I know to a jazz self-improvement book.   Peter Eldridge is a crooner of the old sort, with a wonderful vocal range, and a glorious deep lower register.  Werner and Eldridge are faculty members at Berklee Music College in Boston, and draw on other Berklee musicians for this album, notably the cellist Eugene Friesen who conducts the 20 piece string orchestra, itself recruited from the Berklee World Strings.

The album is for the most part a collection of Werner and Eldridge originals, but with one or two more familiar pieces. You Don’t Know Me is worlds away from the standard made famous by Ray Charles, and brings the best out of Eldridge’s deep baritone.  I’m so Glad You’re Mine is jazzy in a minor way.   That Which Can’t Be Explained has a more theatrical feel and juxtaposes Eldridge’s lyric and a complex string motif. Autumn in Three, a Werner/Eldridge original, swings and swirls seasonally in waltz time, with an evocative string arrangement and a nice rhythm section feature, bringing drummer Yoron Israel and bassist Matt Aronoff to the fore.

The mood slows and mellows with Minds of their Own, setting Eldridge’s words to Ivan Lin’s tune, and a midnight, clubby feel. Less Than Lovers, an Eldridge tune, is lifted by an Aaron Copeland-like string arrangement from Werner.  Difficult takes Eldridge’s music into territory normally occupied by Tom Lehrer, but with a dark, infatuated lyric.

Ballad for Trane features an extended tenor saxophone solo from George Garzone (another Berklee faculty member), and then we return to more familiar ground with a medley of Somewhere (Bernstein/Sondheim) and A Time for Love (Mancini). Untitled Lament (Werner) has an elegiac feel and we finish with a gentle lullaby,  Day is Done (Prayer for Diego), co-written by Eldridge and one of his song writing students Mitchell Proctor. Unexpectedly and splendidly, this sleepy song morphs into rocking bowed cello solo, before gently playing out.

Peter Eldridge and Kenny Werner’s Somewhere is very different, very soothing and very good.  Besides offering a safe place to the listener, there is a pleasing depth, which rewards multiple listenings.    
 James H

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