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Bebop Spoken There

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Postage

16434 (and counting) posts since we started blogging 16 years ago. 314 of them this year alone and, so far, 26 this month (May 9).

From This Moment On ...

May

Sat 18: Jam session @ The Black Swan, Newcastle. 7:00-9:00pm. Free. Celebrating ‘10 years of the Jazz Jam!’. House trio: Alan Law, Paul Grainger, Tim Johnston. A Late Shows event.
Sat 18: SH#RP Collective @ Holy Name Parish Church Hall, Jesmond, Newcastle. 7:00-9:00pm. Tickets: £15.00. Bar available, BYO snacks. A Jesmond Community Festival event. All proceeds to Kabuyanda Charity (Ugandan health care).
Sat 18: Red Kites Jazz @ Staithes Café, Autumn Drive, Gateshead. 7:30pm.
Sat 18: Alligator Gumbo @ The Witham, Barnard Castle. 7:30pm.
Sat 18: Rockin’ Turner Brothers @ Prohibition Bar, Newcastle. 8:00pm. A ‘Jar on the Bar’ gig.
Sun 18: Papa G’s Amigos special summer Latin set @ The Schooner, Gateshead NE8 3AF. 9:00pm. Free.
Sat 18: Late Night Special with Ruth Lambert & special guests @ The Black Swan, Newcastle. 10:00pm-midnight. £5.00. (booking essential). Lambert & surprise jam session guests from down the years.

Sun 19: BTS Trombone Day @ Mark Hillery Arts Centre, Collingwood College, Durham University DH1 3LT. 11:00am-5:00pm. Free to British Trombone Society members (£10.00. & £5.00. to non-members). Recitals, workshops and mass blows.
Sun 19: Women Play Jazz! workshop @ The Globe, Newcastle. 1:30pm. £25.00. Tutor: Andrea Vicari. Enquiries: learning@jazz.coop.
Sun 19: Ransom Van @ Prohibition Bar, Newcastle. 7:00pm. A ‘Jar on the Bar’ gig.
Sun 19: Tweed River Jazz Band @ Barrels Ale House, Berwick. 7:00pm. Free.
Sun 19: Andrea Vicari Trio @ The Globe, Newcastle. 8:00pm.

Mon 20: Harmony Brass @ the Crescent Club, Cullercoats. 1:00pm. Free.
Mon 20: Michael Young Trio @ The Engine Room, Sunderland. 6:00-8:00pm. Free. Opus de Funk: Horace Silver.
Mon 20: Joe Steels-Ben Lawrence Quartet @ The Black Bull, Blaydon. 8:00pm. £8.00.

Tue 21: Jam session @ The Black Swan, Newcastle. 7:30pm. Free. House trio: Alan Law, Paul Grainger, John Bradford.

Wed 22: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm. Free.
Wed 22: Alice Grace Vocal Masterclass @ The Glasshouse, Gateshead. 6:00pm. Free.
Wed 22: Darlington Big Band @ Darlington & Simpson Rolling Mills Social Club, Darlington. 7:00pm. Free. Rehearsal session (open to the public).
Wed 22: Take it to the Bridge @ The Globe, Newcastle. 7:30pm. Free.
Wed 22: Daniel Erdmann’s Thérapie de Couple @ The Glasshouse, Gateshead. 8:00pm.

Thu 23: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ The Holystone, Whitley Road, North Tyneside. 1:00pm. Free.
Thu 23: Gateshead Jazz Appreciation Society @ Gateshead Central Library, Gateshead. 2:30pm.
Thu 23: Castillo Nuevo Trio @ Revoluçion de Cuba, Newcastle. 5:30pm. Free.
Thu 23: Immortal Onion + Rivkala @ Cobalt Studios, Newcastle. 7:00pm.
Thu 23: The Doris Day Story @ Phoenix Theatre, Blyth. 7:30pm.
Thu 23: Tees Hot Club @ Dorman’s Club, Middlesbrough. 8:30pm. Guests: Jeremy McMurray (keys); Dan Johnson (tenor sax); Donna Hewitt (alto sax); Bill Watson (trumpet); Adrian Beadnell (bass).

Fri 24: Hot Club du Nord @ The Gala, Durham. 1:00pm. £8.00. SOLD OUT!
Fri 24: Classic Swing @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm. Free.
Fri 24: Rendezvous Jazz @ The Monkseaton Arms. 1:00pm. Free.
Fri 24: New Orleans Preservation Jazz Band @ The Oxbridge Hotel, Stockton. 1:00pm. £5.00.
Fri 24: Swannek + support @ Hoochie Coochie, Newcastle. Time TBC.

Wednesday, October 09, 2019

Newcastle Festival of Jazz and Improvised Music: Alexander Hawkins Solo + Parker, Hawkins Pope, Hession Quartet @ The Lit and Phil – Oct 6

Alexander Hawkins (piano)
Evan Parker (saxophone); Alexander Hawkins (piano); John Pope (bass); Paul Hession (drums)
(Review by Steve H/Photos courtesy of Ken Drew)

The final session of what had so far been a spellbinding festival concluded, not as advertised with The Julie Kjaer Trio - who sadly had to cancel through illness - but with a newly formed quartet featuring national jazz treasure Evan Parker, Alexander Hawkins, Paul Hession and, making his third appearance of the festival, Newcastle’s very own John Pope. What a fitting finale this proved to be and this pick up band picked up immediately and produced a marvellous if not somewhat short set of improvised jazz.

The last time I saw Evan Parker was when he played solo at the GIJF a couple of years ago but I enjoyed his playing in this ensemble far more. Hession’s drumming was excellent and festival stalwart Pope seemed to fit in perfectly. Who would have thought this band had never played together before?

Hawkins on piano illuminated throughout, especially enjoyable since I’d already been wowed by him when he opened the evening’s proceeding with a virtuoso solo performance. For about an hour we were treated to a sublime exhibition of creativity and technical expertise on the Lit and Phil’s rather excellent grand piano. The ideas ebbed and flowed as wave after wave of intricate, yet always accessible, musical stardust emerged from the keyboard - brilliant stuff.

At the end of the night it seemed fitting that John Pope should say a few words (after all not only did he play in the very first gig of the festival and also the very last but also played in the middle of the festival and even when he wasn’t playing seemed to be present at every gig. In fact rumour has it that next year the event will be renamed The Newcastle Jazz, Improvised and Pope Festival). I’m sure everyone agreed with John when he thanked and congratulated festival organiser Wes Stephenson for his supreme efforts in promoting and organising such a fabulous event.

Eighteen different combinations from all over the world playing an awe inspiring range of improvised music in eight different city locations to virtually capacity audiences -   what an astonishing achievement! He may not be able to organise a ‘festival in a brewery’ but he certainly managed to stage an event that deserves to feature as a jewel in the national festival calendar.  The city of Newcastle should be very grateful to him and might I suggest that he be rewarded by being made a ‘Free Jazzman of the City’?

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