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Bebop Spoken There

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13,508 (and counting) posts since we started blogging 13 years ago. 926 of them this year alone and, so far, 90 this month (July 27).

Saturday, December 19, 2020

SSBB live streaming from Gosforth Civic Theatre - Dec. 19

Instead of being at GCT for SSBB's annual Xmas bash I'm at home although still having a ball imagining I am there with the rest of the BSH team - it could have been our Xmas Party!

First up is Joy to the World followed by Hark the Herald Angels Sing with trumpet ace Pete Tanton doing the heralding if not the singing.

"That's got Christmas out of the way, at least for the time being" says bandleader Michael Lamb as the band swings into Basieland with Way Out Basie featuring solos by Graham Don (piano), Keith Robinson (alto sax) and leader Mike himself on trumpet.

Social Call (arranged by Danny Jonokuchi) features Alice who looks absolutely stunning in a figure-hugging, low-cut creation (tantalisingly hinted at in Russell's photo!) and sounds equally good. The solos by Jamie Toms (tenor sax) and Kieran Parnaby (trombone) have the same audio - if not the video - effect. I love a song that tells a story and this is one of the best.

Fast Cars and Crazy Women - my kind of a tune title - Steve Summers blows alto like he was in the driving seat of one of the former or in the backseat with one of the latter. Guy Swinton also puts his foot on the accelerator .

Alice returns for Avalon. First time I heard this song was on an Al Jolson record - Alice does it better. Jamie Toms on tenor.

The first set concludes with a moody piece - Winter Games - enlivened by a tenor solo from super-sub Matt Forster.

Time to raid the cupboard for a croissant, a can of Abbott Ale and a packet of Dreamies (for Daphne).

We're now good to go once more as Alice waxes eloquently about This Christmas before explaining the problems you face Comes Love.

Into the home straight and Bethlehem's in sight. Pete's playing It Came Upon a Midnight Clear (sometimes known as It Came Upon the Midnight Clear) it's a melodic gem. We Three Kings has some spirited blowing by Jamie Toms before it descends into a bit of a free-for-all. Gold, incense and myrr has that effect on people.

American trombonist Seth Weaver contributed Frost to the library it's as cool as the title suggests but maybe needs to thaw a little.

Alice returns to take us out with The Christmas Song and a great arrangement of Santa Baby - tenor by Matt.

Whilst not quite the real thing, it has still been a memorable concert - same time next year?


Steve Summers, Keith Robinson (alto saxes); Jamie Toms, Matt Forster (tenor saxes); Laurie Rangecroft (bari sax); Dick Stacey, Michael Lamb (MD), Pete Tanton, Billy Bradshaw (trumpets); Kieran Parnaby, Mark Ferris, Chris Gray, John Flood (trombones); Graham Don (piano); Pawel Jedrezewski (guitar); Michael Whent (bass guitar); Guy Swinton (drums); Alice Grace (vocals).


NeilC said...

Thoroughly enjoyed the gig , loved the Basie number especially and Winter Games . The interpretation and arrangements of the traditional Christmas songs offered a really enjoyable perspective on those all too familiar songs . I am not sure how much practice the band were afforded, given the restrictions we all live under at present, but they are such accomplished musicians that did not appear to have impinged on their collective ability and in no way did it detract from the shear quality of the music they produced this evening . Thank you so much for a really enjoyable evening.

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the detail about what Alice was wearing, but you didn't describe anyone else's clothing and how it fit them.

Lance said...

See the band photo.

Anonymous said...

Have to agree with both comments.

The band sounded incredible: thanks so much...

And I came here for the jazz, not the fashion critique!

Merry Christmas.

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