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Bebop Spoken There

Gil Goldstein: "The first three days I was in Florida, I heard Jaco Pastorius play at a club in Fort Lauderdale, and then I heard Pat [Metheny] play in a class on jazz composition. My whole experience of the world changed in those three days." - (DownBeat, March 2020).
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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".

Today Tuesday February 25

Afternoon

Jazz

Classic Swing - The Ship Inn, Front Street, Monkseaton NE25 8DP. Tel: 0191 251 3677. 1:00pm. Free.

Evening

Jam session - Black Swan Bar, Newcastle Arts Centre, Westgate Road, Newcastle NE1 1SG. Tel: 0191 222 9882. 8:00pm. House trio: Dean Stockdale, Paul Grainger, Rob Walker.

A Roaring 20s Social - Durham Students' Union, Dunelm House, New Elvet, Durham DH1 3AN. 7:30pm. £12.00.,£10.00. Music student, £8.00. DUJS member. A Durham University Jazz Society event. Open to all.

Blues/Soul/Folk etc.

?????

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

Monday, February 03, 2020

CD Review: Mezcla – Shoot the Moon

Joshua Elcock (trumpet); Michael Butcher (tenor sax); Alan Benzie (keyboard); Ben MacDonald (guitar); David Bowden (bass); Stephen Henderson (drums); Steve Forman (percussion).
(Review by Hugh C).

Mezcla (meaning “mixture” in Spanish) hail from Scotland and are led by bassist David Bowden – BBC Young Scottish Jazz Musician of the Year 2017.  The band are described in the press sheet accompanying this latest CD release as a “jazz/world fusion ensemble”.  Bowden works primarily in the fields of jazz, folk and contemporary improvised music and following his studies at the Royal Conservatoire of Scotland has spent time studying abroad in Amsterdam and Ghana, as well as being involved in Scottish music education at all levels.

Shoot the Moon is the culmination of almost three years of gigging, rehearsing and Mezcla growing as a band.  The content is all composed by David Bowden and the CD (released on the progressive Ubuntu label) is his first major body of recorded work.  The title track, Shoot the Moon, commences the auditory experience, featuring Fender Rhodes-style piano from Benzie’s keyboard and antiphonal sparring by Butcher on tenor; an upbeat number which sets the tone for the CD.  Volta keeps the wick turned up with a funky groove set by Henderson and Forman in the engine room.  The melodic instruments stretch out over the top.  Sami’s Tune features MacDonald on guitar, retaining the rhythmic drive of the preceding tracks.  Auckland Hill takes the tempo down.  As in previous tracks, the drums and percussion commence and set the initial tone, the other instruments coming in after a few bars.  This track has a balladic quality, evocative of an open Scottish landscape, perhaps.

A Latin-influenced bass solo from Bowden, soon joined by percussion and drums, sets the scene for Dinosaur Jump – these dinosaurs are really having a party!  Our poikilothermic revellers are nowhere to be seen in Winter Walk.  The pace is slow and gentle with fine tenor saxophone from Butcher underpinned by a sonic tapestry from the other band members.  Akpe has a distinct Township vibe.  Firefly has an air of mystery and expectation, with percussive crackling in the background, one is not quite sure which way it is going to go next. Solo trumpet from Joshua Elcock features here.  The CD is brought to a close with Knockan Crag, which starts as a slow ballad, metamorphosing into an up tempo romp part-way through.

Shoot the Moon, three years in gestation, delivers a bundle of joy and is presented to the world this Friday (Feb. 7). The fun the band are having is palpable throughout and, what’s more, there will be an opportunity to feel it in a live session at Newcastle Jazz Coop’s Globe Jazz Bar on July 16.

Hugh C

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