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Bebop Spoken There

Steve Fishwick: “I can’t get behind the attitude that new is always somehow better than old”. (Jazz Journal, April 15, 2019).

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!"

Simon Spillett: A lovely review from the dean of jazz bloggers, Lance Liddle...

Josh Weir: I love the writing on bebop spoken here... I think the work you are doing is amazing.

Postage

16542 (and counting) posts since we started blogging 16 years ago. 422 of them this year alone and, so far, 29 this month (June 17).

From This Moment On ...

June

Sun 23: Paul Skerritt @ Hibou Blanc, Newcastle. 2:00pm.
Sun 23: More Jam @ The Globe, Newcastle. 2:00pm. Free.
Sun 23: Matt Carmichael @ St Mary’s Church, Wooler. 3:00pm. Carmichael (saxophone), Fergus McCreadie (piano), Charlie Stewart (fiddle). ‘Scottish jazz, folk-roots & landscape’ Wooler Arts: Summer Concerts.
Sun 23: 4B @ The Ticket Office, Whitley Bay. 3:00pm. Free.
Sun 23: Tweed River Jazz Band @ Barrels Ale House, Berwick. 7:00pm. Free.
Sun 23: Bede Trio @ The Globe, Newcastle. 8:00pm.
Sun 23: Leeway @ Prohibition Bar, Newcastle. 8:00pm. Free. A ‘Jar on the Bar’ gig.
Sun 23: Jazz Jam @ Fabio’s Bar, Saddler St., Durham. 8:00pm. Free. A Durham University Jazz Society event. All welcome.

Mon 24: Harmony Brass @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm. Free.
Mon 24: Remy CB @ The Hoppings, Newcastle Town Moor NE2 3NH. 5:00-7:00pm.

Tue 25: Louise Dodds & Elchin Shirinov @ The Black Swan, Newcastle. 8:00pm.

Wed 26: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm. Free.
Wed 26: Darlington Big Band @ Darlington & Simpson Rolling Mills Social Club, Darlington. 7:00pm. Free. Rehearsal session (open to the public).
Wed 26: Take it to the Bridge @ The Globe, Newcastle. 7:30pm. Free.

Thu 27: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ The Holystone, Whitley Road, North Tyneside. 1:00pm. Free.
Thu 27: Jeremy McMurray & the Pocket Jazz Orchestra @ Arc, Stockton. 8:00pm.
Thu 27: The Joni Project @ The Globe, Newcastle. 8:00pm. Joni Mitchell.
Thu 27: Lindsay Hannon’s Tom Waits for No Man @ Harbour View, Roker, Sunderland. 8:00pm.
Thu 27: Merlin Roxby @ Prohibition Bar, Newcastle. 8:00pm. Free. Ragtime piano. A ‘Jar on the Bar’ gig.
Thu 27: Loco House Band @ Bar Loco, Newcastle. 8:00pm. Free.
Thu 27: Tees Hot Club @ Dorman’s Club, Middlesbrough. 8:30pm. Guests: Richie Emmerson (tenor sax); Neil Brodie (trumpet); Garry Hadfield (keys); Adrian Beadnell (bass)

Fri 28: Classic Swing @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm. Free.
Fri 28: Rendezvous Jazz @ The Monkseaton Arms. 1:00pm. Free.
Fri 28: New Orleans Preservation Jazz Band @ The Oxbridge Hotel, Stockton. 1:00pm. £5.00.
Fri 28: Pete Tanton’s Chet Set @ Warkworth War Memorial Hall. 7:30pm. £10.00.
Fri 28: Paul Edis @ St Cuthbert’s Centre, Crook. 7:30pm.
Fri 28: Ant Law, Alex Hitchcock, Jasper Høiby & Sun-Mi Hong @ The Glasshouse, Gateshead. 8:00pm. £15.40., £13.20.

Sat 29: Spat’s Langham’s Hot Fingers @ St Augustine's Parish Centre, Darlington. 12:30pm. Darlington New Orleans Jazz Club.
Sat 29: Vermont Big Band @ Seahorse Pub, Whitley Bay Football Club. 7:30pm. £10.00. (inc. hot buffet).
Sat 29: Papa G’s Troves @ Prohibition Bar, Newcastle. 8:00pm. Free. A ‘Jar on the Bar’ gig.

Monday, March 23, 2020

CD Review: Keith Oxman - Two Cigarettes in the Dark

Keith Oxman, Houston Person (tenor sax); Jeff Jenkins (piano); Ken Walker (bass); Paul Romaine (drums); Annette Murrell (vocal on 2 tracks).
(Review by Lance).

What a gem this is! Admittedly I'm a sucker for two tenor front-line outfits and this one compares with the best of them. However, unlike most pairings, it's not a joust or a cutting contest. The two horns' contrasting tones complement each other. Oxman, the suave sophisticate, Houston, the super soulful saxist. Together they weave a magical tapestry that ranges from balladry to bop (the hard version). The opener, Frank Loesser's I've Never Been in Love Before fits comfortable between the two extremes.


84 year old Person, for many years Etta James' musical partner, has that gutsy sound that could be traced back to Illinois Jacquet via, maybe Johnny Griffin. Oxman leans more towards Hank Mobley so perhaps it is no coincidence that, along with the standards, Mobley (Bossa For Baby) and Griffin (Sweet Sucker) provided a couple of the tunes.

Annette Murrell interprets  the words to  Crazy He Calls Me and  Everything Happens to Me. The latter tune by that most underrated tune-smith Matt Dennis never fails to get me with it's ironic lyric:
I make a date for golf and you can bet your life it rains,
I try to throw a party and the guy upstairs complains,
I guess I'll go through life just catching colds and missing trains,
Everything happens to me.

I telegraphed and phoned sent an airmail special too,
Your answer was goodbye - there was even postage due...

Ah that last line! A true loser's song. However, Annette is anything but a loser and her earthy-voiced delivery does both songs justice. As a tribute to the singer, Oxman titled  an original composition of his Murrellancholy. Other originals are Voss is Boss and Murphy's Law Impacts L.E.A.P - catchy title - Person sits these ones out.

Some nice piano from Jenkins, who also composed the groove based Wind Chill, which, coupled with solid support from bass and drums make this an album of sheer delight. Oh yes, the title track. Two Cigarettes in the Dark was initially a Bing Crosby ballad. These days, such a title, romantic as it was back in the 1930s, would set off alarms with both the fire dept and the health service although, at present, the latter may have other things on its mind.

Highly recommended - ECM it ain't!
Lance 
PS: Liner notes are by the legendary alto saxist Charles McPherson who draws attention to the stylistic contrasts between the two tenor players - "Keith's long flowing lines and Houston's warm rich tone". Trust me, Charles knows about these things!

Available now from Capri Records.

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