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Bebop Spoken There

Ethan Iverson: "I asked Bertha [Hope] if she ever used the word "contrafact" to describe the process of writing new tunes over old changes, and she replied, "Of course not. The only people who used that word went to a university to learn about jazz."" - (Jazz Times March 2020).

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COFID- 19

In the current climate we are doing our best to keep everyone up to date. All gigs, as we all know, are off.

However, good old YouTube has plenty to offer both old and new to help us survive whilst housebound. Plus now is a good time to stock up on your CDs.

Also, keep an eye out for live streaming sessions.

Alternatively, you could do as they do in Italy and sing from your balcony.

Today

As we all know there are no live gigs taking place in the immediate future. However, any links to jazz streaming that are deemed suitable - i.e. with a professional approach - will be considered for posting.

Friday, February 28, 2020

The Slim Bees @ The Hotspur, Newcastle - Feb 27

Michael Littlefield (guitar, vocals); Scott Taylor (harmonica, vocals) 
(Review by Russell)

The Slim Bees play country blues, they drink beer. For two hours straight they sat in a corner of their one room country shack and entertained themselves playing a selection of numbers by a who's who of American blues greats. Moonlighting from their regular gig - the Chicago blues band King Bees - Michael Littlefield and Scott Taylor found themselves an audience in the Hotspur here on Percy Street, Newcastle.

The boys like Little Walter, Big Bill Broonzy, Mississippi John Hurt, Jimmy Reed, Sonny Boy Williamson (I and II), T-Bone Walker, Jimmy Rogers,  Elmore James, John Brim and a host of others. Two hours of this stuff with a beer - it doesn't get any better than this! 


Michael Littlefieid's wears lightly his encyclopedic knowledge of the music and its practitioners, the blues staples, the guitar styles from the Mississippi Delta to Chicago and beyond. His guitar playing and vocals a match for anyone. Scott Taylor's vocals and harp playing would have seen him stand toe to toe with all-comers on fifties South Side Chicago. Had he been around back then we'd now be listening to him on rare cuts from Chess.

From Make Me a Pallet on Your Floor (in his head your reviewer couldn't help but hear Dave Rae singing the number) to Quarter to Twelve to My Babe to bar room Jimmy Reed's You Got Me Dizzy to Taylor hollerin' Five long years, I been workin' in a steel mill, this was blues heaven. Reviewers can talk up a gig - 'Gig of the Year' etc  There's nowt wrong in enthusing but your reviewer stands by every word of this review - these guys are the business. If you're in any way doubtful, 'scuse me, get along to Prohibition Bar on Pink Lane, Newcastle, Friday 6 March. Littlefield and Taylor will be there with King Bees, the best Chicago blues band east of Illinois. 
Russell       

2 comments :

NeilC said...

Hello Russell,

Was this organised or impromptu and if the former is it to be a regular gig ? I have seen the King Bees many times and Michael Littlefield was the star when he played solo a couple of years back at the Americana Festival at the Sage.

Russell said...

Hi Neil It was a one off gig although the duo did play a 'one off' at the pub a couple of years ago. Don't miss King Bees on Friday (Mar 6) at Prohibition Bar. The band will be in the downstairs bar which means Dom Hornsby will be on the upright piano.

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