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Monday, October 19, 2020

Paul Edis: Music Box live stream from Sage Gateshead - Oct. 19

Paul Edis (piano, keyboards, clarinet, flute, music box, vocals); Matt Anderson (tenor sax, soprano sax ); Andy May (Northumbrian pipes, keyboards); Francis Tulip (guitar); Ben Lawrence (keyboards) + Francis Tulip (guitar); Ben Lawrence (piano) 

(Photos courtesy of Ken Drew-see album.)

Paul Edis conceived the Music Box some time ago. A performance was scheduled for May at Sage Gateshead but the small matter of a pandemic intervened. A new date of October 7 came too early to permit an audience to be present so, next best thing, a pre-recorded live stream. Tonight was the night.

Composer, arranger, pianist, Paul Edis made the journey north from his London home to meet up with friends Matt Anderson, Andy May, Francis Tulip and Ben Lawrence. Their socially distanced meeting in the Northern Rock Foundation Hall produced a live stream set of some forty five minutes. Numbers from Edis' association with Ushaw College featured prominently: Edis with Northumbrian piper Andy May playing Shepherd from Melrose from the composer's St Cuthbert Suite for the Ushaw Ensemble and the haunting Sound of Achill

During the three quarters of an hour, Edis found time to play piano, keyboards and clarinet and sing and crank up a music box! What a surprise! A music box is a childhood memory. Do kids of today know about these things? Happy Song found Edis singing amidst a chattering of bird sound, accompanied by Matt Anderson. 

A short interlude offered Francis Tulip and Ben Lawrence the opportunity to play a number as a duo. Brunswick the title, the next time we see these guys we must ask them about the tune. Is it a joint composition? 

Edis and Anderson returned to play Lockdown London with some of Edis' mobile phone camera footage of an all but deserted London shown by way of illustration. Just about the only creatures seemingly on the face of planet Earth at the time of Edis' excursion into the heart of the capital were cyclists and a fox! 

For many, a favourite Paul Edis number is Vignette. And the man chose to play it - a good choice! When all this - the pandemic - is over, it would be nice to see Sage Gateshead offer Edis and co the opportunity to perform the music to a real, live audience. We live in hope. 
Russell

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