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Bebop Spoken There

Victor Wooten: "People don't expect to have bass players get together and sound like music and not just like a bunch of elephants" (JazzTimes April, 2022)

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! --

Postage

14226 (and counting) posts since we started blogging 14 years ago. 445 of them this year alone and, so far, 45 this month (May 13).

From This Moment On ...

May.

Wed 18: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.
Wed 18: Darlington Big Band @ Darlington & Simpson Rolling Mills Club, Darlington. 7:00pm. Rehearsal session (open to the public).
Wed 18: Four @ The Exchange, North Shields. 7:00pm.
Wed 18: Take it to the Bridge @ The Globe, Newcastle. 7:30pm.

Thu 19: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ The Holystone, North Tyneside. 1:00pm.
Thu 19: Gateshead Jazz Appreciation Society @ Gateshead Central Library. 3:00-5:00pm. £1.00. All welcome.
Thu 19: Castillo Nuevo @ Revoluçion de Cuba, Newcastle. 5:30-8:30pm.
Thu 19: Maine Street Jazzmen @ Sunniside Social Club, Gateshead. 8:30pm.
Thu 19: 58 Jazz Collective @ Dorman’s Club, Middlesbrough. 9:00pm. TBC.

Fri 20: Andrea Vicari Trio @ Lit & Phil, Newcastle. 1:00pm. Vicari (piano), Andy Champion (double bass), Abbie Finn (drums).
Fri 20: Classic Swing @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.
Fri 20: New Orleans Preservation Jazz Band @ Oxbridge Hotel, Stockton. 1:00pm.
Fri 20: Rendezvous Jazz @ The Monkseaton Arms, Monkseaton. 1:00pm.
Fri 20: Swing Bridge @ Garden House Coffee, Hallgate, Hexham. 4:05pm.
Fri 20: Castillo Nuevo @ Revoluçion de Cuba, Newcastle. 5:30-8:30pm.
Fri 20: Customs House Big Band w Ruth Lambert @ Exchange, North Shields. 7:30pm.
Fri 20: Andrea Vicari Trio @ Traveller’s Rest, Darlington. 8:00pm. £12.00. Opus 4 Jazz Club. Vicari (piano), Andy Champion (double bass), Abbie Finn (drums).

Sat 21: Elkie Brooks @ Whitley Bay Playhouse. 7:30pm.
Sat 21: Jools Holland’s R & B Orchestra @ The Hippodrome, Darlington. 7:30pm.
Sat 21: Milne-Glendinning Band @ Prohibition Bar, Newcastle. 8:00pm.

Sun 22 Vieux Carré Hot 4 @ Spanish City, Whitley Bay. 12 noon.
Sun 22: More Jam @ The Globe, Newcastle. 3:00pm. Free.
Sun 22: Foundry Jazz Ensemble @ The Exchange, North Shields. 3:00pm.
Sun 22: Abstract Orchestra plays J Dilla @ Wylam Brewery, Newcastle. 7:30pm.
Sun 22: Panharmonia @ The Globe, Newcastle. 8:00pm. £10.00 adv., £12.00. door.

Mon 23: Jazz in the Afternoon @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.

Wed 25: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.
Wed 25: Darlington Big Band @ Darlington & Simpson Rolling Mills Club, Darlington. 7:00pm. Rehearsal session (open to the public).
Wed 25: Four @ The Exchange, North Shields. 7:00pm.
Wed 25: Take it to the Bridge @ The Globe, Newcastle. 7:30pm.

Thursday, November 19, 2020

Album Review: Living In Shadows – Living In Shadows

Zoë Gilby (vocals); Andy Champion (bass, cello, keyboards, drums, programming); Mark Williams (guitar); Paul Edis (piano) + Graeme Wilson (ten sax track 1, bari sax track 7); George Milburn (mandolin track 2); Emma Fisk (violin track 5)

These performers are well known and much loved by many of us here in the North East (and beyond) but not in the shape of this band, Living In Shadows. This fine album began life in 2016, when Andy and Zoë decided to expand their creativity by making music 'that is in our hearts without concerning ourselves with what pigeon hole it needs to fit into' said Zoë. The result is an album of 8 original songs, influenced by pop, rock, and progressive rock, and just a tinge of jazz.

The songs concern love, relationships, domestic abuse, daydreams, dictatorships, Newcastle in the 1970's, and even the migration of birds. The lyrics are interesting and intelligent and the musicianship is skilled, appropriate for the themes, just as we expect from these experienced players. The general idea is said to be transition and movement throughout life but that description gives no indication of just how enjoyable and thought-provoking the music is in reality.

The album opens with For The Day, about the birds, strong piano chords with an 'airy' feel and the sax playing a swooping effect, the voice doubling and echoing, singing such words as 'in the haze, watch it while away, beating wing of change'.

Running Feet is fast as in running, the most jazz-like track, with multi-tracked vocals, possibly a migrant running to safety.

I especially enjoyed Try To Take It Twice (maybe not quite the right word for such a serious subject), which is about domestic abuse, the vocals are almost bitter, mocking and chant-like 'you left the light on, falling over,' with the music sounding like running feet, especially the agitated mandolin.

Sending Electricity is a quite sensuous song about communicating when separated, which is sung in a more intimate voice than on the other tracks.

Believe concerns daydreams and features Emma Fisk on violin and the voice is double tracked.

The Tunnel is the most fascinating of the songs. Zoë has chatted about this at gigs, relating how she had to perform songs in a railway tunnel during a jazz festival in Romania. This sounds positively dangerous to me, but Zoë has managed to turn it into a song about a long-forgotten train on the railways of the past.  The lyrics are full of atmosphere 'drip-dropping dampness cries, holding the past it lasts for a lifetime, brakes screeching, I'm alive'.

Postcards concerns dictatorship, based on a book, Alone In Berlin by Hans Fallada. The voice is ironic, 'a poisoned pen letter, to make you feel better?' and the bass and baritone sax play fast and sound menacing.

Smoke & Mirrors This final track is the longest at nearly 10 minutes and it was commissioned by Jazz North East to commemorate their 50th birthday in 2016. It was inspired by the film Get Carter and concerns  some aspects of life in 1970's Newcastle, mainly to do with corrupt property deals, naming no names, and the destruction of buildings of historical value. The comprehensive lyrics are printed on the CD cover, and are well worth reading, such lines as 'demolish ruin castles, replaced with towers of plastic' The music is appropriate, a jazzy piano, drums and bass sequence, a sad-sounding guitar, a very angry voice, ending with the final assertion 'what you see is what you're getting'.

All tracks were written and arranged by Zoë Gilby and Andy Champion, except track 3 by Zoë, Andy and Mark Williams and track 8 by Zoë, Andy and Roy Budd

The tracks For The Day and Sending Electricity have already been issued as singles. These have been played on BBC Radio Newcastle and on media outlets in the USA. The album is available from Dec. 4 as a digital download, a CD, and as a vinyl (limited edition) copy. See www.livinginshadows.com

Ann Alex

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