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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

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. Guests: Dave Archbold (keys); Josh Bentham (tenor sax); Donna Hewwitt (alto sax); Adrian Beadnell (bass).

Fri 03: Classic Swing @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.
Fri 03: New Orleans Preservation Jazz Band @ Oxbridge Hotel, Stockton. 1:00pm. £5.00.
Fri 03: Rendezvous Jazz @ The Monkseaton Arms, Monkseaton. 1:00pm.
Fri 03: Abbie Finn Trio @ Saltburn Community Hall. 7:30pm.
Fri 03: Dilutey Juice @ Bobik's, Punch Bowl, Newcastle. 7:30pm.
Fri 03: Smoove & Turrell @ Hoochie Coochie, Newcastle. 7:30pm (doors). £25.00.
Fri 03: TBA @ Prohibiton Bar, Newcastle. 8:00pm. Blind Pig Blues Club.

Sat 04: Alligator Gumbo @ St Augustine's Parish Centre, Darlington. 12:30pm.
Sat 04: Play Jazz! workshop @ The Globe, Newcastle. 1:30pm. Tutor: John Pope - Up Your Rhythm Game. £25.00. Enrol at: www.jazz.coop.
Sat 04: King Bees @ Grainger Market, Newcastle. 6:30pm (doors). Live music, comedy, DJs, food stalls. £10.00. advance, £15.00. on the door. Blues band King Bees on stage 9:45-11:15pm. A Great Market Caper event.
Sat 04: Jives Aces @ The Witham, Barnard Castle. 7:30pm.
Sat 04: Renegade Brass Band @ The Cluny, Newcastle. 7:30pm (doors).
Sat 04: Rendezvous Jazz @ Red Lion, Earsdon. 8:00pm. £3.00.

Sun 05 Vieux Carré Hot 4 @ Spanish City, Whitley Bay. 12 noon.
Sun 05: Rivkala @ Cumberland Arms, Newcastle. 6:00pm.
Sun 05: Jive Aces @ Fire Station, Sunderland. 7:30pm.
Sun 05: Dale Storr @ The Globe, Newcastle. 8:00pm.

Sunday, October 27, 2019

Vasilis Xenopoulos with the Paul Edis Trio @ The Black Bull, Blaydon - October 27

Vasilis Xenopoulos (tenor & soprano saxophones); Paul Edis (piano); Ken Marley (double bass); Russ Morgan (drums)  
(Review by Russell/Photos courtesy of Roly Veitch).

A third gig in as many days for the man from west London as Vasilis Xenopoulos concluded his north east mini tour with an afternoon concert at Blaydon Jazz Club. The Black Bull's south facing lounge attracts the sun and on this Sunday afternoon curtains were drawn to block out a blinding light. Our welcome visitor has a new album - Dexterity - to promote and chose to open the set with the CD's sole Xenopoulos composition. 

Dexterology in concert is best described as one part Dexter Gordon, one part Vasilis Xenopoulos, one part sackful of quotes. A quick-witted member of the audience could, perhaps, attempt to write down the titles but the torrent of oh-so-fleeting quotes all but overwhelms the listener - better to sit back and enjoy the brilliance, one could say, the dexterity of it all. It was quite a start.

A wonderful bluesy opening to Hanky Panky with Xenopoulos on tenor set up Ken Marley to deliver the first of several mature, extended solos - just as the Manchester based bassist had done in Darlington and Crook on Friday and Saturday respectively. Our bandleader is renowned for blowing some seriously good tenor and he also possesses a ready wit. In teasing Paul Edis about being allocated the task of delivering a convincing shout of Soy Califa, he suggested a 'take two' to which our pianist nailed it with Soy Califa, Hinny! And off they went - Xenopoulos on soprano conjuring a Moorish-ish feel, similarly drummer Russ Morgan with brushes, sticks and hands. Fantastic!

Society Red with its two-head structure appeals to Xenopoulos and Blaydon Jazz Club's regulars were treated to chorus after glorious chorus from an inspired musician in full flow. Likewise Edis, superb, two-handed piano playing (Blue Monk was in there), ideas tumbling. Later, one observer commented: Paul never plays the same thing twice. A compliment, indeed.

Tadd Dameron's ballad If You Could See Me Now took it down with yet more masterful playing. The interval, the consensus - wonderful. 

Charlie Chapiln's Smile (heard for the first time on this visit) opened the second set. Xenopoulos was clearly enjoying himself playing with panache and 'old school' swagger. Two tunes back to back focussing on Dexter Gordon's time in Sweden - Tivoli (Marley soloing) and Montmartre - maintained the highest of standards and Second Balcony Jump provided further evidence of the swash and buckle which marks out Xenopoulos as one of the finest saxophonists of his generation. 

A bolero ballad - I'm a Fool to Want You - enticed a couple to take to the Black Bull's imaginary dance floor. Magically, Edis quoted from The Godfather. It was as if Don Corleone had taken out a contract - on whom and for what reason will forever remain shrouded in mystery...

It was time to go but not before Xenopoulos called Scrapple from the Apple. How do you think this one went? It went whoosh! It had been a fabulous afternoon of jazz. As and when Vasilis Xenopoulos returns - day or night - it's a dead cert it'll be yet another memorable occasion.     

As a postscript Greek born Xenopoulos revealed that as a young man he performed at Copenhagen's Jazzhus Montmartre jazz club as a member of the European Youth Jazz Orchestra. Two great saxophonists, generations apart, stood on the same stage. How good is that?!    
Russell

1 comment :

Patti said...

An evocative and colourful extended review here, from Russell - but I must point out that Copenhagen, of the Tivoli Gardens and Monmartre Jazz Club fame, is in Denmark, not Sweden.

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