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Bebop Spoken There

Jazzmeia Horn: "Sometimes my grandmother visits me in my dreams when I feel like I want to give up or I'm too tired, just for inspiration and encouragement." - (Jazzwise, Dec., Jan., 2019/20).

Archive

Today Thursday December 5

Afternoon

Jazz

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

Evening

Jazz

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

Tees Hot Club w. Middlesbrough Jazz & Blues Orchestra - 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.

Jools Holland’s R&B Orchestra - Newcastle City Hall, Northumberland Road, Newcastle NE1 8SF. Tel: 0844 8112121. 7:30pm. £47.50. & £34.00. Second night of two.

Chris Farlowe & the Norman Beaker Band + Teresa Watson Band - Newcastle Labour Club, Leazes Park Road, Newcastle NE1 4PF. Tel: 0191 232 8049. 7:45pm (doors). £22.00. (£19.00. adv.).

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

Saturday, November 30, 2019

CD Review: Classic Swing - Stepping Out with a Memory


Olive Rudd (vocals); Jim McBriarty (alto sax, clarinet, vocals); Tommy Moran (tenor sax); Neville Hartley (trombone); Colin Haikney (piano); Alan Rudd (double bass); Tommy Graham (drums)
(Review by Russell)
 
Formed less than two years ago Classic Swing is a band comprising experienced musicians who have been there, done that and continue to do it. Stepping Out with a Memory was recorded earlier this year at Ayr Jazz Club and the CD is a fine example of the band in action. No fewer than thirteen tracks across a generous seventy eight minutes' playing time feature all seven musicians. 

Friday, November 29, 2019

CD Review: Anne Phillips – Live At The Jazz Bakery


Anne Phillips (vocals); Roger Kellaway (piano); Bob Kindred (tenor sax); Chuck Berghoffer (bass).
(Review by Ann Alex).

Anne Phillips issued a promising debut album, Born To Be Blue, back in 1959 but, surprisingly, didn't do a follow-up until 2000. In between she was singing behind the scenes in commercial music and writing songs for shows and adverts. Then lately, she appeared at LA's famed Jazz Bakery, doing this live recording of standards and some of her own songs and giving an entertaining spoken account of her life and times.

Donkeys, Jazz and Mince Pies @ The Garden Centre

Saturday 30 November 2019: Christmas Shopping Event with The Vieux Carré Jazzmen, 12.00 - 2.00pm.
There’s lots to see and do at Plantsplus Garden Centre this festive season. Listen to live 20’s jazz music and Christmas songs and enjoy a FREE homemade mince pie. Bring the kids along to see our donkeys from the Scottish Borders Sanctuary; choose your fresh cut Christmas tree. You’ll also find a large range of indoor and outdoor Christmas lighting, artificial Christmas trees, decorations and unique gifts.

Tuesday 3rd December 2019: Afternoon Tea with The Vieux Carré Jazzmen, 3.00 - 5.00pm. 
Includes glass of prosecco or mulled wine on arrival with a small canape.
Mini afternoon tea served with a glass of prosecco. 
Tea or filter coffee.

Tickets £20, £5 deposit upon booking. 

Plantsplus Garden Centre, Berwick Hill Road, Seaton Burn, Newcastle NE13 6BU.

Thursday, November 28, 2019

Revisiting a super CD.

I was mulling through the albums I'd reviewed thinking in terms of best of... This one came out in January and, although I raved over it then, it somehow slipped off my radar - I played it again (Sam) and realised what I've been missing! So I've brought it back into the fray to remind readers of just how good it is.

At the time I actually had a spare copy which I passed on to The Jazz Coop for one of their raffles. I wonder who won it and if he thinks it is as fantastic as I do? Or maybe it's lying, hidden amidst a pile of unraffled CDs, the JC team unaware of the gem that lies within their reach...

Wednesday, November 27, 2019

CD Review: The Darius Brubeck Quartet – Live in Poland


Darius Brubeck (piano); Dave O’Higgins (tenor sax); Matt Ridley (bass); Wesley Gibbens (drums).
(Review by Lance).

Darius Brubeck dispensed with his siblings some twelve years ago, hooking up with Ridley and Gibbens. A move that some might see as the equivalent of Brubeck père bringing in Gene Wright and Joe Morello. Tenor man Dave O’Higgins remains on the team which is a wise move – which alto player could replace Paul Desmond?

Apart from a couple of dad’s breadwinners – In Your Own Sweet Way, Desmond’s Take Five and Hugh Masekela’s Nomali – the remaining tracks on this delightful album are  all composed by Darius. Of course the influence of Papa Dave seeps into Darius’ playing but it is only a slight infusion. It would be abnormal if some of his old man’s greatness didn’t rub off.

Ingrid & Christine Jensen with the Whirlwind Recordings Jazz Orchestra @ the Purcell Room, EFG London Jazz Festival, Nov. 23.

(Review by Patrick Hadfield/photo courtesy of Michael Lamb)

This concert was a treat on so many levels. I'm a sucker for a big band, and this one, made up of musicians on the Whirlwind Recordings label, was a special delight.

Lead by Canadian sisters Ingrid and Christine Jensen,much of the music was featured on their recent Whirlwind album, "Infinitude", arranged for the big band by Christine, as well as compositions by Kenny Wheeler, saxophonist Josephine Davies, and Carla Bley. The arrangements were full of rich textures and brought to mind the work of Maria Schneider. There were moments of quiet space as well as sonorous depth. Ingrid and Christine took turns in  directing the orchestra.

Jam Session @ The Black Swan - Nov. 26

(Review by Lance).

One of the more sedate jams that was, nevertheless, not without its merits and quite often less is more and so tonight proved.

The house trio of Stu, Paul and Rob set the tone with Lover, A Nightingale Sang in Berkeley Square and Take the A Train. Played with their customary precision and aplomb, it told any newcomers, and there were a few, that they would be in safe hands should they take the plunge.

Steve Summers is no newcomer and he set out his stall with compelling versions of Wave and Well You Needn’t. His booting tenor as tough as they come.

R.I.P. Roy Willox.

The news that saxophonist Roy Willox passed away on Monday (Nov. 25) at the age of 90 fills me with sadness and brought back many memories of listening to the Ted Heath Band at Newcastle City Hall back in the early 1950s. This was my introduction to the exciting world of big bands and the Heath orchestra was the finest one around as witnessed by the Melody Maker polls of the time.

Although the big attraction for many were the singers, Lita Rosa, Dickie Valentine and Dennis Lotis or the hot shot soloists such as trumpet players Bobby Pratt and Bert Ezzard, trombonist Don Lusher and clarinettist Henry McKenzie, Roy Willox more than held his own on alto and soprano. Since then he played on many albums as a session man, often anonymously, - a true legend.

Tuesday, November 26, 2019

Pope to visit Leeds

December in Leeds may not have quite the same ring to it as April in Paris or Autumn in New York but, nevertheless, there are some interesting chestnuts about to blossom in that fair city.

Of particular local interest, is a duo concert by the ubiquitous John Pope. The Tyneside bassist has teamed up with trumpet player Kim Macari for what is described as an ”improv/spoken word/electronic performance”

Full details of this and other concerts can be found here.
Thanks to Steve Crocker for the info.
Lance.

CD Review: Keith Jarrett – Munich 2016

Keith Jarrett   (Piano)
(Review by Chris K)

Amid the slew of releases marking the ECM label's 50th birthday, a Keith Jarrett solo concert, recorded in the label's Munich home. The piano god goes back a long way with ECM, with the solo Facing You (1971) recorded in the studio, followed by multiple incarnations in trio and quartet form as well as his trademark completely improvised solo slots on piano and organ.  It was his solo Köln Concert (1975) which opened the door to jazz for a generation of new listeners and established ECM financially, as it became the all-time best-selling solo jazz album (and all-time best-selling piano album) with over 3.5 million copies.

Jarrett is a divisive figure, famously ranting at audiences for coughing during his creative moments, while often indulging himself with (distracting and ludicrous) vocal accompaniments ranging from grunting to tuneless singing.  His perceived high-handedness has inspired stories such as the jazzer who gets to heaven and hears some beautiful music. He asks St. Peter who's playing:  "Oh, that's God. He thinks he's Keith Jarrett".

The Eales' Report: Opus 4 Jazz Club - Nov 22

On Friday 22nd Tony Eales attended Opus 4 Jazz Club's November concert presentation. The Traveller's Rest's first floor room in Cockerton, Darlington drew a good crowd to listen to the Mick Shoulder Quintet. Bassist Shoulder (pictured earlier in the day working with Sue Ferris at the Merry Monk in Bishop Auckland) called in a couple of deps and, according to TE, they did more than alright. 

Monday, November 25, 2019

Jazz Social @ Charts - Nov 24


Rick Laughlin (piano, keyboards); Paul Grainger (double bass); Abbie Finn (drums) + Harry Keeble (tenor sax); MJ (guitar)
(Review by Russell)

Charts' weekly jazz social continues to engage top class trios to entertain Quayside diners and drinkers. For 'jazz social' read 'jam session'. Sunday's late afternoon session welcomed Rick Laughlin, up from County Durham, to play three leisurely sets in the company of Paul Grainger and Abbie Finn.

New Gateshead Jazz line-up announced

(Press release)

Sage Gateshead has today announced the artists joining Gateshead Jazz headliner Jamie Cullum at next year’s festival.

Hard-hitting electronic trio GoGo Penguin, Mercury-nominated SEED Ensemble, dancefloor fillers Ibibio Sound Machine and House Gospel Choir, rising star Judi Jackson and many more will all be performing at Gateshead Jazz on Friday 20 March to Sunday 22 March 2020.

Upholding the venue’s long-standing commitment to Jazz, the festival (which is the UK’s biggest jazz festival under one roof) shifts into a new era with a fresh name; ‘Gateshead Jazz’.  Its focus is on attracting new audiences with cutting-edge artists joining established names, reflecting the current fervor for the genre and platforming talent from across the North.

Steve Hackett @ Sage Gateshead – Nov. 23

Steve Hackett (guitar); Roger King (keys); Rob Townsend (sax/flute/keys); Jonas Reingold (bass guitar); Nad Sylvan (vocals) (Craig Blundell (drums).
(Review by Steve T)

This was sold out months ago but we still managed to secure a ticket on the day for Mrs T and, after twenty five years, she's finally accepted that Peter Gabriel is a giant and Phil Collins a d!ck, at least when he's not behind a drum-kit.

I never had any intention of reviewing it for Bebop Spoken Here, but it turned out to be such a huge event, and seems to me to have been so important, it doesn't seem right for it to go totally unnoticed.

We arrived just after six and already the place was bustling and buzzing with a palpable atmosphere of anticipation.

EFG London Jazz Festival - Rhiannon Giddens/ Francesco Turrisi @ Royal Festival Hall – Nov. 22


(Review by Peter Slavid)

I should declare up front that I've been a fan of Rhiannon Giddens for some years.  I first saw her as part of the Carolina Chocolate Drops – the radical trio that recast the history of American Country music to finally recognise the part played by African Americans.  I've seen her play with her own band with a mix of pop, folk and country, I saw her became the first American to receive the BBC's folk singer of the year award. Then I saw her blow away a room full of Scotland's finest musicians when she totally stole the show at the Transatlantic Sessions.

So is this another example of a jazz festival booking someone from a different genre just to fill seats?  Well, yes – if you believe that the history of African-American music and jazz are completely unrelated.  But of course they aren't.

Sorathy Korwar @ Sage Gateshead (Sage 2) – Nov. 19

(Review by Steve T)

It's becoming increasingly futile to second-guess what to expect at gigs, but there was never any doubt in my mind I'd be going to this one.

His My East is Your West is one of the finest albums I've ever reviewed for Bebop Spoken Here, but it came with scant information (actually none if I remember correctly).

I was expecting a tabla player so wasn't sure whether Sorathy was the drummer or the person rapping at the front of the stage: when Trilok Gurtu played the Sage with Paulo Fresu and Omar Sosa, he had various Indian percussion instruments incorporated within his standard kit.

CD Review: Kelley Johnson - Something Good

Kelley Johnson (vocals); John Hensen (piano); Michael Glynn (bass); Kendrick Scott (drums) + Jay Thomas (sop sax/tenor sax/trumpet: tks 4,5,8).
(Review by Lance).

Kelley Johnson's yet another singer mining the GASbook and she seems to have struck gold going by DownBeat's assessment "...wisps of Carmen McRae's ginger snap, Betty Carter's yawning reach, Anita O'Day's feline purr and Nancy Wilson's crystaline enunciation.

Wow! unlike DB I'm lost for words - crystaline enunciation - I'll file that one for future reference!

Sunday, November 24, 2019

CD Review: Joachim Caffonnette Trio - Vers L'Azur Noir

Joachim Caffonnette (piano); Alex Gilson (bass); Jean-Baptiste Pinet (drums)
(Review by Lance)

Sadly, non-jazz pressures caused me to delay my review of this very enjoyable album by Belgium pianist Caffonnette and his two French confrères. Doubly sad as it meant not being able to draw attention to their recent UK tour which, although it bypassed Newcastle, given the number of mainland Europe bands that do turn up on Tyneside, was something of a surprise. However, the tour did include Glasgow, Edinburgh, Manchester, Nottingham, Luton, Hove and, of course, London at no less a place than Kansas Smitty’s.

El swing de los años 30 y 40: swing revival

Saturday, November 23, 2019

Preview: Zbigniew Namyslowski Quintet @ Jazz Cafe Posk - Dec. 7

One of the legendary gigs at the old New Orleans Club on Forth Banks in Newcastle, and one that is still spoken of with reverence today, was the appearance by the Zbigniew Namyslowski Quintet.

The Polish modern jazz group impressed fans with the leader's alto playing being compared favourably with many American alto saxists back then in the early 1960s. His Decca album Lola, released in 1964, still sounds relevant today.

Over the years there have been many more recordings and concerts all over the world indicating that even at the age of 81 his powers are undimmed.

The good news is that on December 7 the quintet are appearing in London - see poster for details - and, for those living within the sound of Bow Bells, it surely is a must. Even if you live in John O'Groats, Land's End or points in between give it some serious thought.
Lance. 

The Tenement Jazz Band @ Theatre Hullabaloo, Darlington - Nov 22

John Youngs (banjo, guitar, vocals); Charles Dearness (trumpet); Paddy Darley (trombone); Tom Pickles (alto sax, soprano sax); Doug Kemp (string bass)
(Review by Russell)

Darlington New Orleans Jazz Club continues to go from strength to strength. For twelve months and more Saturday lunchtime concerts at St Augustine's Parish Centre have attracted ever increasing audiences and this welcome trend encouraged organisers to take a chance on promoting an evening event at Hullabaloo on Borough Road. Theatre Hullabaloo is Darlington Hippodrome's studio theatre space and on Friday evening a near capacity audience turned up to hear the Tenement Jazz Band. 

Friday, November 22, 2019

CD Review: DIVA Jazz Orchestra - DIVA + The Boys

(Review by Lance)

DIVA + The Boys sees the Pittsburgh based all girls big band lure four of their male counterparts into a live session at the Manchester Craftsmen’s Guild which is on 1815 Metropolitan St in Pittsburgh PA and not to be confused with any craftsmen’s guilds in Manchester UK.

If the guys thought they were in for an easy time of it they hadn’t reckoned on the DIVAS!

Ken Peplowski is, without doubt, my favourite clarinettist and what better stomping ground for him than Goodman’s Slipped Disc? DIVA Janelle Reichman obviously thought she could handle it too and, with the powerhouse band behind her she pushed Ken to a split decision – listeners, the verdict is up to you!

Sue Ferris Trio @ The Merry Monk, Bishop Auckland - Nov 22


Sue Ferris (tenor sax, flute); Paul Edis (piano); Mick Shoulder (double bass)
(Review by Russell/Photos courtesy of Jerry E)

Three top class musicians - bandleader Sue Ferris arrived with minutes to spare, Paul Edis a little earlier and Mick Shoulder, as promoter of Bishop Auckland's monthly jazz gig, was on the premises in good time to ensure things were set fair. A Sue Ferris Trio gig is an occasional happening and when it happens it's one that shouldn't be missed. Quite a few fans thought along similar lines and as the one o'clock start approached the Merry Monk was comfortably full.

No rehearsal, none required, Sue, Paul and Mick opened with Ellington's Just Squeeze Me. A round of solos - tenor sax, piano, bass - set the ball rolling, it was going to be a good one. Miles Davis' Four - Sue perceptively commenting that the number would be played by three (the trio) - once again featured a round of solos, this time in a different order, first Paul, followed by Sue, then Mick. 

Alice Grace-Jordan Alfonso Quintet @ St James' & St Basil's Church, Fenham, Newcastle - Nov 21


Alice Grace (vocals); Jordan Alfonso (alto & tenor saxophones); Stu Collingwood (piano); Paul Grainger (double bass); Russ Morgan (drums)
 (Review by Russell)

Winter, church, take a pew. Freezing isn't the word! A bottle of Old Speckled Hen, a prompt start. A debut performance by the Alice Grace-Jordan Alfonso Quintet attracted a sizeable crowd. Many of those present hadn't heard Alfonso play, they were in for a treat.

Chick Corea, Clifford Brown, Freddie Hubbard, Pat Metheny, Victor Young...none of them could make it to St James' and St Basil's Church but their collective songbook did. You're Everything (comp Corea), Joy Spring (comp Brown, lyrics Jon Hendricks) featuring Alice Grace's joyful vocals, a warming Black Coffee, the Fenham Hall Drive audience liked what it was hearing. 

CD Review: Joy Ellis – Dwell


Joy Ellis (piano, Fender Rhodes, vocals); Rob Luft (guitar); Henrik Jensen (double bass); Ferg Ireland (electric bass); Adam Osmiandski (drums); Helen Burnett (sound bowls on Daffodils)
(Review by Ann Alex)

Here is the first of three humdinger CDs received for review – I feel lucky. I've already seen Joy Ellis and her band at the Globe and have heard some of these actual songs. All the songs were written and produced by Ms Ellis and her lyrics are supplied on the CD insert, a bonus we didn't get in the live performance, so I was well primed to enjoy the album, and I certainly did.

Thursday, November 21, 2019

CD Review: Burak Bedikyan - Istanbul Junction


Burak Bedikyan (piano); Matthew Hall (bass); Can Kozlu (drums) + Gabor Bolla (tenor sax on 4 tks.).
(Review by Lance).

Turkish born, NYC based, pianist Bedikyan is one of the more interesting contemporary players. The man from Istanbul doesn’t attack the piano with a sledgehammer, reducing it to matchbox material as so many do. Instead, he cajoles it, makes love to it and, leaves the listener enthralled until he finally, unleashes his musical virility.

Gabor Bolla plays some nice, straight down the middle tenor. Great tone, Don Byas, maybe Hank Mobley comes to mind. He blows up a storm on four tracks and I wanted more. But given that the other five tracks were by the trio I’m not complaining - bass and drums are an essential part of the mix..

Wednesday, November 20, 2019

Newcastle University Jazz Orchestra @ the Dun Cow, Jesmond - Nov. 19

(Review/photos by Lance)

Bass guitarist Ifede Osiyami led from the front aided and abetted by a cast of, seemingly, thousands. It was a no names no pack drill so my apologies for the lack of individual identification.

The sitters in and the sitters out were having a good old jolly jam. End of term was approaching and the students from Newcastle University Jazz Orchestra were letting their hair down.

The material was fairly predictable, albeit often with an unusual twist. For example neither Monk’s Blue Monk nor Garner’s Misty were taken at the tempo devised by the composers – but what did they know? Against my better judgement, I found myself quite liking Misty played as a fast stomp rather than a dreamy ballad. And 3 saxes blowing Take Five in unison also added a different dimension.

Monday, November 18, 2019

Composer of the Week: Mary Lou Williams

In the week of this year's EFG London Jazz Festival the subject of Radio 3's Composer of the Week is Mary Lou Williams. In today's first programme presenter Donald Macleod included selections from the pianist's recording session with Ken Napper, Allan Ganley and Tony Scott. Four more programmes can be heard at noon, Tuesday to Friday. 
Russell  

Classic Swing @ Blaydon Jazz Club - Nov 17

Tommy Moran (tenor sax); Jim McBriarty (alto sax, soprano sax, clarinet); Neville Hartley (trombone); Jeremy McMurray (piano); Alan Rudd (double bass); Tommy Graham (drums); Olive Rudd (vocals)
(Review by Russell/ photos courtesy of Roly Veitch)

Classic Swing's fans from Monkseaton and West Jesmond ventured out on a cold, rainy night to support the band at the Black Bull. Their welcome presence alongside Blaydon Jazz Club's loyal supporters made this a night to remember. Tommy Moran's compositions and arrangements featured throughout the evening with Count Basie material peppering the set list. 

CD Review: Ronny Whyte - Whyte Witchcraft

(Review by Lance)

Cy Coleman ranks alongside the big hitters such as Kern, Porter, the Gershwins, Rodgers and Hammerstein/Hart. and, of course, Irving Berlin, However, whereas the aristocracy of the GASbook's great compositions needed some redefining for the jazz world, Coleman's music needed no tweaking they were there for the taking by any musician or singer who had the chops to handle them. Ronnie Whyte is just such a singer, not least because he was a buddy and often got the songs first hand.

With words, in the main, by Caroline Leigh the material is first rate and with a belter of a big band behind him this must surely rate as one of the all-time classic vocal records.

File it alongside your albums by Sinatra, Bennett, Tormé and Ella albums and, not necessarily in that order.

Sunday, November 17, 2019

Sunday Jazz @ Middlesbrough Town Hall w. Binker Golding Band, Noya Rao, & Francis Tulip Quartet.

Binker Golding Band: Golding (tenor sax); Sarah Tandy (piano); Conor Chaplin (bass); Jamie Murray (drums).
(Review by Lance)

This was a cracker! From the opening number everyone went for it. Train-lagged they may have been but it didn’t show. Sarah Tandy set the bench mark at what seemed an impossible high but nothing is impossible and it was passed several times, not least by herself. Tenor and drums also posted the unreachable (bassist Chaplin set down his mark later). This was just the first tune and already I was on the edge of my seat eagerly anticipating the next one.

Emma Johnson's Gravy Boat @ The Globe - Nov. 16

Emma Johnson (tenor sax); Fergus Vickers (guitar); Richard Jones (piano); Angus Milne (bass); Alasdair Pennington (drums)
(Review by Lance/photos courtesy of Ken Drew).

The Metro was crowded. Cans of lager and cider were being surreptitiously popped. The hemlines were high - even non-existent - and I wasn't complaining!

The hordes disembarked at Central and headed in the direction of The Globe. On the sidewalk, one "Busking Joe" played drums the crowd danced to his rhythm - he could play! The ground floor bar of the Jazz Coop HQ was heaving as the hoi polloi primed themselves for an evening with Gerry Cinnamon, a singer/songwriter whose lyrics it's reported are 'brutally honest'. He was appearing across the road at the Utilita Arena.

His next gig is at Hampden Park which is seemingly sold out! Clearly this guy is a big deal!

Not dreaming of a White Christmas


(By Lance)

It turns up every year - usually mid-December. However, this year it came early. The most schmaltzy movie of them all. Yes, I'm talking about White Christmas with Bing, Danny Kaye, Vera Ellen and Rosemary Clooney. The original, Holiday Inn with Fred Astaire rather than Danny Kaye, was much better - apart from one thing. The original didn't have Rosie singing Love, You Didn't Do Right By Me.

For me, this is one of the classic musical moments of the 1950s and a timely reminder that George Clooney's aunt could hold a song better than he could! 

Saturday, November 16, 2019

Preview: Swinging into Blaydon with Classic Swing!

(Preview by Russell)

Tomorrow (Sunday) sees something a little different at the Black Bull. Blaydon Jazz Club presents seven piece outfit Classic Swing in an evening of swing era to GASbook material. Tommy Moran has been busy writing arrangements for the band and fans will be keen to hear what the veteran tenor saxophonist has come up with. Come to think of it, Moran's bandmates will be interested to know what awaits them!

Jo Harrop & Jamie McCredie @ Holy GrAle, Durham - Nov 15

Jo Harrop (vocals); Jamie McCredie (guitar)
(Review by Russell)

Lumiere, Durham's spectacular lightshow festival, attracts thousands upon thousands of visitors but on Friday evening numbers were down ever so slightly as some preferred to spend their evening in an arched, brick-lined cellar on Crossgate. The big attraction at Holy GrAle was an intimate duo gig featuring two north easterners who base themselves in London but were 'up north' for a couple of days to play two gigs, one in Newcastle and this engagement in Durham City.

Friday, November 15, 2019

Jo Harrop & Jamie McCredie @ The Lit & Phil - Nov 15


 Jo Harrop (vocals); Jamie McCredie (guitar)
(Review by Russell)

Over the last decade or so, Jo Harrop has been a frequent visitor to her native north east to perform intimate duo gigs to large scale concert engagements. In contrast, Jamie McCredie hasn't played a jazz gig on home turf during that time. Vocalist Jo and guitarist Jamie live and work in London and this Lit & Phil lunchtime engagement was a first opportunity for a Tyneside audience to hear them working as a duo.

Mondo Trumpet @ Gosforth Civic Theatre - November 14

Pete Tanton (trumpet/flugelhorn/vocal); Graham Hardy (trumpet/flugelhorn); Paul Edis (piano); Andy Champion (bass/bass guitar/acoustic guitar); Russ Morgan (drums).
(Review by Lance/Photos courtesy of Pam).

Mondo Trumpet or World Trumpet grew from an idea born in a bar in Brasilia (Brass-ilia?) – or was it Byker? – where our two trumpeting toreadors thought it would be a worthwhile conception to compose and arrange music depicting various parts of the world.

The room was comfortably filled, the trio primed for action on the floor level stage and an expectant hush descended as we waited, and waited and waited until, after a fanfare that sounded a bit like Rule Britannia – was this going to be a Brexit Bash? – the co-leaders emerged from the wings and we were transported to sunnier climes, the cats and dogs that were peppering the pavement outside forgotten.

FOUR MILLION HITS LATER...


Editor-in-Chief LL couldn't have imagined the burgeoning popularity of Bebop Spoken Here. From humble beginnings (it all started back in 2008 with the posting of a few observations on the jazz scene) to humbly accepting a 2018 APPJAG award (media category), the north east of England jazz blog has, for many, become essential reading. 

From what's happening in and around New York (that's New York, North Tyneside) to venues further afield (the 'other' New York isn't off limits!), to a plethora of album reviews (CD, vinyl, digital download), to news items, in fact, for anything jazz, Bebop Spoken Here is your indispensible online resource. The four million has come and gone, now for the five million...
Russell

[Lance]: Photo shows myself with Liz Harris and her late husband Denys (left of the picture). Liz was the first person to comment on BSH. She is a dear friend and her support continues to the present day. The photo was taken at Scarborough Jazz Festival in 2010.

Thursday, November 14, 2019

Sirkis-Bialas IQ @ King's Hall, Newcastle University - Nov 14

Asaf Sirkis (drums, percussion, konnakol); Sylwia Bialas (vocals, waterphone); Frank Harrison (piano, keyboards); Kevin Glasgow (bass guitar). 
(Review by Russell).

The IQ's second album featured during this afternoon's King's Hall concert. Our New Earth serves to showcase the compositions of the two principals - Asaf Sirkis and Sylwia Bialas - with committed contributions from pianist Frank Harrison and bassist Kevin Glasgow. Drummer Sirkis did the talking, Bialas did the singing, all four did the playing to an attentive audience.

If you happen to be in NYC next Thursday...



Calvert and the Old Fools @ Dormans Jazz Club, Middlesbrough - November 7


Sam Calvert (drums); Richie Emmerson (tenor sax); Andrew Medowcroft (piano/vocals); Tony Wood (double bass).
(Review by Ron H)

This month’s guest band, featuring a quartet formed from local musicians new to Dormans (apart from Richie), gave the audience a first class night of entertainment.

Up tempo versions of Almost Like Being In Love, A Foggy Day and Louis Jordan's Is You Is or Is You Ain't My Baby, got things underway. All had excellent sax solos from Richie as well as Andrew showing his skills singing, playing fine piano and displaying great feeling for the music.

Wednesday, November 13, 2019

CD Review: Buddy Rich - Just in Time: The Final Recording

(Review by Lance). 

This is a monster of an album and, if you want to remember the world's greatest drummer leading what many consider to have been one of the world's greatest big bands ever, then your Christmas present problems are solved. Buy one, gift wrap it and post it to yourself. 

So many of the greats, sadly, didn't leaves us on a high - age is cruel in that respect - but with Buddy he left on as high a note as is possible.

Swingin' New Big Band, Big Swing Face, Mercy, Mercy, Mercy and all those other albums are great and belong in any big band buff's collection - as does this!

Sugaray Rayford + Radikal Queen @ The Cluny - Nov. 12


Sugaray Rayford (vocals); Aaron Liddard (tenor sax); Giles Straw (trumpet); Gino Matteo (guitar); Drake 'Munkihaid' Shining (keyboards, vocals); Allen Markel (bass guitar); Lavell Jones (drums).
(Review by Russell)

The Jumpin' Hot Club boys know their stuff and, in association with the Cluny, booked Sugaray Rayford to deliver an electrifying performance. A first visit to these shores by the larger-than-life character from California generated considerable nationwide interest and Newcastle upon Tyne's blues-soul fans turned out in force. 

The prospect of Rayford delivering the goods momentarily looked in doubt when, half an hour before the doors were due to open, news filtered through that, earlier in the day, Rayford and his six-piece band had arrived at their destination...Newcastle under Lyme! Pointing the tour bus north the headline act arrived on Tyneside with little time to spare.