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Bebop Spoken There

Giovanni Guidi: "So many jazz albums today are all original compositions, and five minutes after the record is finished, you can't remember a single song. I think it's a problem." - (JazzTimes Oct. 2019).

Archive

Daily: July 6 - October 27

Precarity John Akomfrah’s film (2017, 46 mins) about Buddy Bolden - Baltic Centre for Contemporary Art, Gateshead Quays, South Shore Road, Gateshead NE8 3BA. Tel: 0191 478 1810. Screenings at intervals during the day. Part of Akomfrah's exhibition Ballasts of Memory. Exhibition (daily) July 6 - October 27. 10:00am-6:00pm. Free.

Today Thursday October 17

Afternoon

Jazz

Precarity John Akomfrah’s film (2017, 46 mins) about Buddy Bolden (see above).

Vieux Carré Jazzmen - Holystone, Whitley Road, Holystone NE27 0DA. Tel: 0191 266 6173. 1:00pm. Free.

Evening

Jazz

Aurora - St James' & St Basil's Church, Fenham Hall Drive, Fenham, Newcastle NE4 9EJ. 7:30pm. £8.00. (£4.00. student). Zoë Gilby, Noel Dennis & co play the music of Tom Harrell.

No Fox - The Globe, Railway Street, Newcastle NE4 7AD. 7:30pm. £6.00. (£3.00. student).

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

Darlington Big Band - 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.

Gerry Richardson Jazz Quartet - Hoochie Coochie, 54 Pilgrim Street, Newcastle NE1 6SF. Tel: 0191 222 0130. 8:30pm (doors 7:00pm). Free.

Blues/Soul/Funk

Holy Moly & the Crackers - Georgian Theatre, Green Dragon Yard, Stockton TS18 1AE. Tel: 01642 674115. 7:30pm. £12.00.

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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Bebop Spoken Here -- Here, being the north-east of England -- centred in the blues heartland of Newcastle and reaching down to the Tees Delta and looking upwards to the Land of the Kilt.
Not a very original title, I know; not even an accurate one as my taste, whilst centred around the music of Bird and Diz, extends in many directions and I listen to everything from King Oliver to Chick Corea and beyond. Not forgetting the Great American Songbook the contents of which has provided the inspiration for much great jazz and quality popular singing for round about a century.
The idea of this blog is for you to share your thoughts and pass on your comments on discs, gigs, jazz - music in general. If you've been to a gig/concert or heard a CD that knocked you sideways please share your views with us. Tell us about your favourites, your memories, your dislikes.
Lance (Who wishes it to be known that he is not responsible for postings other than his own and that he's not always responsible for them.)
Contact: lanceliddle@gmail.com I look forward to hearing from you.

Submissions for review

Whilst we appreciate the many emails, texts, messages and other communications we receive requesting album/gig reviews on BSH, regrettably, we are unable to reply to all of them other than those we are able to answer with a positive response.
Similarly, CDs received by post will only be considered if accompanied by sufficient background material.
Finally, bear in mind that this is a jazz-based site when submitting your album.
Lance