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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.)

Archive

Today Thursday December 12

Afternoon

Jazz

Vieux Carré Jazzmen - Holystone, Whitley Road, Holystone NE27 0DA. Tel: 0191 266 6173. 12:00pm. Free.

Note earlier time for this week only!

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Evening

Jazz

Hot Club du Nord - Lubetkin Theatre, East Durham College, Willerby Drive, Peterlee SR8 2RN. Tel: 0191 518 2000. 7:00pm. £10.00. (£5.00. under 18s). 'Jazz at the Lubetkin'.

Gala Big Band - Gala Theatre & Cinema, Millennium Place, Durham DH1 1WA. Tel: 03000 266 600. 7:30pm. £10.00. (£8.00. concs.). ‘Gala Big Band Does Christmas’.

Durham University Big Band - Dunelm House, New Elvet, Durham DH1 3AN. Tel: 0191 334 1777. Free. 7:30pm. ‘Jazzy Christmas’.

Indigo Jazz Voices - The Globe, Railway Street, Newcastle NE4 7AD. 7:30pm. £5.00. (£2.00. student).

Maine Street Jazzmen - Sunniside Social Club, Hollywell Lane, Sunniside, Gateshead NE16 5NJ. Tel: 0191 488 7347. 8:30pm. Free.

Tees Hot Club w. Gus Smith (vocals); Dave Stansfield (tenor sax); Ted Pearce (keys) - Dorman’s Club, Oxford Road, Middlesbrough TS5 5DT. Tel: 01642 823813. 8:30pm. Free.

New Orleans Preservation Jazz Band - Oxbridge, Oxbridge Lane, Stockton on Tees TS18 4AW. 8:30pm. £2.50.

Blues/Soul/Funk/Etc.

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

Wednesday, October 02, 2019

Nishla Smith & Tom Harris @ The Lubetkin Theatre, Peterlee - October 2

Nishla Smith (vocals); Tom Harris (piano)
(Review by Russell)

In August 2018 Nishla Smith sang at the old Jazz Café jam session. As BSH's editor-in-chief LL recorded at the time, the Australian-born, Manchester-resident vocalist silenced the room as she gave a spellbinding reading of Don't Explain. A gig in the Black Swan earlier this year followed and today Smith made the trip across the Pennines to perform at the Lubetkin Theatre in Peterlee.

Jazz at the Lubetkin is a monthly, Wednesday lunchtime, concert series promoted by musician/educator Emma Fisk at East Durham College. An audience of jazz diehards and college students gathered for a one o'clock start. Smith walked onto stage with pianist Tom Harris to present a one hour set of original compositions and a few jazz standards. 

Very much alone together, the duo succeeded in establishing an intimate atmosphere in a darkened auditorium. A brace of original compositions for openers; Friends with Monsters and Blue Dream revealed a quirky songwriting talent; simplicity of lyric, space to breathe (literally!), a wistful fragility. Ms Smith likes Billie Holiday - Jim, a lesser known song from the legendary performer's songbook, found pianist Harris in playful Monkian mood and, as the set developed, it became apparent Smith's musical partner has a distinctive approach irrespective of his primary function as accompanist. 

Don't Explain sang Smith (it was worth making the trip to Peterlee!), Mean to Me, familiar material given a new treatment, not quite what one might expect and all the better for it. The Lark (comp. N Smith), Tea for Two (one of Harris' favourite numbers) with, not for the first time, much space. The duo seemed to revel in being so exposed - slow tempo, a considered pause, challenging themselves to negotiate/avoid the obstacles ahead. 

Corcovado featured Harris, a fine soloist in his own right. As the hour-long concert drew to a close Ms Smith suggested an up-tempo, happy finale. Smith left us with another original composition titled Up. It had been an intriguing hour, the next time Nishla Smith is in town go check her out. 

Russell            

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