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Bebop Spoken There

Jeremy Pelt: "I'm so much into melodies and into sound, and the presence of sound, that I don't necessarily want to try to play in between the cracks of a note." - (DownBeat November 2020)

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".

Postage

12,000 (and counting) posts since we started blogging 12 years ago. 1140 of them this year alone and, so far, 87 this month (Oct. 27).

Coming soon ...

IT IS ADVISABLE TO CHECK IN ADVANCE WITH THE VENUE THAT THE GIG IS ON.

OCTOBER

THURSDAY 29

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

Abbie Finn Trio - Prohibition Bar, Pink Lane, Newcastle NE1 5DW. 8:00pm. Free (donations). Limited capacity (upstairs). It’s Abbie’s birthday!

Maine St Jazzmen - Sunniside Social Club, Sunniside Road, Sunniside NE16 5NA. Tel: 0191 488 7347. 8:00-10:00pm. Free. Note earlier start/finish.

FRIDAY 30

Neil William & Ben Holland - Prohibition Bar, Pink Lane, Newcastle NE1 5DW. 8:00pm-10:00pm. Free (donations). Limited capacity. Jazz standards from the 1920s & 30s.

SATURDAY 31

Alice Grace & Pawel Jedrzejewski - Prohibition Bar, Pink Lane, Newcastle NE1 5DW. 8:00pm-10:00pm. £10.00. Online booking (to book a table). Limited capacity. Alice & Pav join a multi-bill of entertainers (magician etc) to celebrate Prohibition Bar’s fifth anniversary. SOLD OUT!

Sunday, October 11, 2020

Film preview: "Ronnie's"


If you profess to be a jazz fan and haven't been to Ronnie Scott's at least once in your lifetime  then your street cred is questionable and if you have been only once then your cred is open to even further investigation as Ronnie's isn't a one off drop in place unless you're from the Antipodes or maybe Mars and even then the chances are you will be back.

It's that kind of place.

If you doubt my word then check out a new documentary that's about to premiere on Friday Oct. 23 on the Everyman Cinema circuit - God and Boris permitting.

It's probably the best factual jazz film since Jazz on a Summer's Day and, over the years, most of the artists who appeared in that film have, along with just about every other great jazz musician, performed at Ronnie Scott's. Many of them can be seen and heard via rare archived footage, during the course of the film

It relates the story of the club and its founders, Pete King and Ronnie Scott, who set out to bring the atmosphere of the modern jazz clubs on New York's 52nd St. to London's Soho. First on Gerrard St and then at it's current location in Frith St. However, readers of BSH will know all this so let's cut to the film.

Written and directed by Oliver Murray it's a compelling story of a man and his dream. A dream that came true and continues to this day 20 years after his death. Of course Ronnie Scott was more than just a club owner he was also one of the great British tenor saxophone players. That too is an important part of the story.

To list the who's who of artists seen and heard on the film is near impossible however, the IMDb listing below provides that information and more - much more. 

Put October 23 in your diary now - underline the entry, put it in bold CAPITAL LETTERS. Fingers crossed, it's not to be missed!

Lance

Trailer.

IMDb link.

2 comments :

Unknown said...

I’ve only been once and wasn’t impressed. I’ve always been annoyed by the way Ronnies distorts jazz in this country. It’s too small, yet attracts the biggest names so then it has to overcharge for tickets. I suspect that half the audience are journalists on freebies and they’re not going to complain, are they? That also bumps up the prices. When you add on at least a 100 quid for travel and accommodation it’s even less affordable for those of us in the North East. I’d rather be at Sage 2, the Lit and Phil or the Bridge and leave Ronnies to the southerners and their funny ways.
Cheers
Dave

Anonymous said...

One reason for the two different views of Ronnie Scott's club is that in fact there are two 'Ronnie's' (not to be confused with 'the' two Ronnies). Ronnie the First is now a mythical place but it did actually exist in the old days where you could get in for free if you arrived at 9pm when it opened and could stay until 3am listening to the best jazz musicians in the world. Two impecunious Dublin teenagers, myself and my jazz-loving mate, Bren thought nothing of getting the bus down to Dun Laoghaire to catch the overnight mail boat to Holyhead and then an assortment of trains to London and tube to Leicester Square to get to Ronnie the First. The first time we went we, of course, arrived at 9pm and bagged a front row table and heard three staggeringly good sets by Ben Webster until 3am. And we were left completely undisturbed by management or staff even though we could just afford a coke each at what seemed then the extortionate price of half a crown a glass. What made the experience even more memorable was that Ronnie Scott himself was the compere and in the flesh he was even funnier than in his hilarious autobiography 'Some of My Best Friends Are Blues'.
Our accommodation that night was in what could only be described as a doss house in Covent Garden.
Since that time anyone who risked travelling with me through London ended up in Ronnie the First unless they were deaf or had a certificate proving they would turn into a pumpkin if they were out after midnight.

What the previous commentator needs to realise is that without the dedication of Ronnie Scott (and Pete King) in bringing over established US jazz giants and having a club where they could play, in the early days we wouldn't have been able to hear these people live as there was no reciprocal arrangement for musicians from the US to play in the UK, and vice versa.

However, my guess is that he actually visited Ronnie the Second which came into being when Pete King sold the club in 2005 (Ronnie Scott had died some years earlier). It is true that the prices are much more expensive and the atmosphere inside is not nearly as good but, too be fair, the club does still get very high quality musician and you can experience them in a 'club' setting (rather than the concert hall set-up of the Sage, for instance). However the biggest changes for me are that it is now much more 'corporate' and having two sessions each evening means you can just hear one set of the main artist/band. Some of these changes are, of course, inevitable in our financialised world and it is obviously expensive to run a club in a city like London so it is still great that Ronnie the Second exists even if some of us pine for Ronnie the First (but I would now be happy to give the doss house a miss).

JC

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