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Bebop Spoken There

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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.

Thursday, March 26, 2020

Alice Sings, James Swings Honeysuckle Rose - duo performance @ Dorman's Club

Alice Grace (vocals); James Harrison (keys); Russ Morgan (drums, well sort of)
(By Ann Alex/photo courtesy of Ron Hampton)

In these weird times you could do a lot worse than go to Lance's Jazz Indoors or click directly on to the link to Jim Nesbitt's Music On Teesside. On my computer, at any rate, you can get a clip of Alice Grace singing Honeysuckle Rose, and what a superb performance! The introduction from James is full of fancy trills, then Alice sets to work in her honeyed, well-dictioned voice, full of feeling, much pointing to our pianist as he plays in the spaces ('Not Bad' she says), then she gives a welcome to the latecomers, all without missing a beat.

 After one chorus or so, we get wordless improvisation on the tune, which I personally much prefer rather than scat. The song is not just simply sung but interpreted with feeling. Alice is wearing a strapless (brave woman!) all-in-one trousered outfit (is this a jump suit?) of shining material, looking smart and tastefully saucy, which suits the song. If I was a man I would be utterly charmed instead of just admiring.

I was amused by Russ on drums, not playing on this number. At first he is bent double, doing whatever drummers do to prepare the bass drum I assume, then he sits back. It's strange to see an inactive drummer as normally drummers are so interesting to watch, what with drums, cymbals, hand drums, sticks, mallets and multiple timings.

You could also do worse by having a listen to another clip on the same screen, that of Soznak playing at the Monument in Newcastle. Jude Murphy is singing Take Another Little Piece Of My Heart, although the sound is hampered by being outside. I was interested in the vast difference between the singing of a rock-type of song and a jazz song, both performed by skilled singers.

Have a listen. Enjoy!
Ann Alex   

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