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Bebop Spoken There

Lakecia Benjamin: "From my early days with Clark Terry, he told me 'they see you before they hear you'... I'm just not from that school of thought where I'm gonna wear my jeans and T-shirt on stage and that's going to be respectable." - (Jazzwise, February 2023)

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!"

Postage

15056 (and counting) posts since we started blogging 15 years ago. 75 of them this year alone and, so far, 75 this month (Jan. 25).

From This Moment On ...

January

Sat 28: Tyneside Improvisers Workshop @ Ye Olde Cross, Ryton. 2:00-4:00pm. All welcome.
Sat 28: Secular Sounds in a Sacred Place @ Holy Cross Church, Ryton. 4:30-7:00pm. £10.00. Continuous performance featuring: Christian Alderson, Faye MacCalman, Sally Pilkington, John Pope. Event preceded by a Tyneside Improvisers Workshop (2:00pm, see above).
Sat 28: Entartete Musik @ The Globe, Newcastle. 7:30pm. A Brundibár Arts Festival event. SOLD OUT!

Sun 29: Vieux Carré Hot 4 @ Spanish City, Whitley Bay. 12 noon.

Sat 28: Revolutionaires @ Brandling Villa, South Gosforth, Newcastle. 9:00pm. Rhythm & blues band.

Sun 29: Musicians Unlimited @ Park Inn, Hartlepool. 1:00pm.
Sun 29: 4B @ The Exchange, North Shields. 3:00pm.
Sun 29: Revolutionaires @ Greens, Low Row, Sunderland. 6:00pm. Rhythm & blues band with a horn section (inc. Pete Tanton).
Sun 29: Hypnotic Brass Band @ Cluny, Newcastle. 7:00pm (doors). £20.00.
Sun 29: Jam No.12 @ Fabio's, Saddler St., Durham. 8:00pm. Free. Durham University Jazz Society jam session. All welcome (students & non-students).
Sun 29: Origin @ The Globe, Newcastle. 8:00pm.

Mon 30: Harmony Brass @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.

Tue 31: ???

February

Wed 01: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.
Wed 01: Darlington Big Band @ Darlington & Simpson Rolling Mills Social Club, Darlington. 7:00pm. Rehearsal session (open to the public).
Wed 01: 4B @ The Exchange, North Shields. 7:00pm.
Wed 01: Take it to the Bridge @ The Globe, Newcastle. 7:30pm.
Wed 01: Moonlight Serenade Orchestra UK: Glenn Miller & Big Band Spectacular @ Darlington Hippodrome. 7:30pm.

Thu 02: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ The Holystone, Whitley Road, North Tyneside. 1:00pm. Free.
Thu 02: Gateshead Jazz Appreciation Society @ Gateshead Central Library. 2:30-4:30pm. £1.00. All welcome.
Thu 02: Paul Skerritt Duo @ Tomahawk Steakhouse, High St., Yarm. 8:00pm.
Thu 02: Tees Hot Club @ Dorman's Club, Middlesbrough. 9:00pm.

Sunday, October 06, 2019

CD Review: Ray Blue - Work


Ray Blue (tenor sax); Sharp Radway (piano); Jeff Barone (guitar) Essiet Okone Essiet (bass); Steve Johns (drums) + Kirk Lightsey or Benito Gonzalez (piano); Ron Wilkins (trombone); Belden Bullock (bass); Neil Clark (percussion).
(Review by James Henry)

Once in a while, from out of nowhere, comes a CD that is just about perfect and restores one’s faith in jazz, the universe and just about everything else. Ray Blue’s Work is just such a gem. This is a carefully curated mix of the old and the new, played in a swinging old school style, but with enough freshness and surprise to keep us on our toes, and enough depth to reward a careful listening.

Ray Blue is a New York based saxophonist with an impressive CV as a sideman, and a few solo credits. He has worked extensively in the USA, mainland Europe and China, but sadly doesn’t appear to have played in the UK. His tenor playing is sweet and mellow and at its very best in the lower register.


The title piece Work is one of Blue’s own compositions, and is a joyful number - its rhythmic style lies somewhere between calypso and cha-cha, and it is helped along by Neil Clark’s percussion. Lift Every Voice and Sing is given an up beat rendition but retains an appropriate hymn-like, gospel quality. There are ballads too: My Friend and I Took a Walk, another Blue composition, has an ethereal quality, and Benito Gonzalez’ gentle piano playing perfectly matches Blue’s sweet tenor. Gonzalez and Blue continue their ballad partnership in That’s All, with sensitive support from Essiet Okone Essiet on bass and Steve Johns on drums. Nat Adderley’s Sweet Emma is uplifting, with a fine trombone solo from Ron Wilkins, and tight ensemble work.  

There are surprises too: Everything Happens to Me escapes from life as a ballad and enjoys a mid-tempo quartet outing. Don’t Know Why will tease you until you remember hearing Norah Jones singing it everywhere a few years back. Our Day Will Come is stated confidently and benefits from a driving up-tempo treatment.

Work is like one’s work should be- varied and fulfilling, purposeful and enjoyable, and more than just a job. Nice work.
James H

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