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Bebop Spoken There

Lakecia Benjamin: "From my early days with Clark Terry, he told me 'they see you before they hear you'... I'm just not from that school of thought where I'm gonna wear my jeans and T-shirt on stage and that's going to be respectable." - (Jazzwise, February 2023)

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!"

Postage

15056 (and counting) posts since we started blogging 15 years ago. 75 of them this year alone and, so far, 75 this month (Jan. 25).

From This Moment On ...

January

Fri 27: Zoë Gilby Quartet @ Gala Theatre, Durham. 1:00pm. SOLDOUT!
Fri 27: Classic Swing @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.
Fri 27: New Orleans Preservation Jazz Band @ Oxbridge Hotel, Stockton. 1:00pm. £5.00.
Fri 27: Rendezvous Jazz @ The Monkseaton Arms, Monkseaton. 1:00pm.
Fri 27: Hip Hop Hooray @ Bar 52, Newcastle. 7:00pm.
Fri 27: John Dikeman, Pat Thomas, John Edwards, Steve Noble @ Lit & Phil. 7:30pm. £10.00.
Fri 27: Rob Heron & the Tea Pad Orchestra @ Hoochie Coochie, Newcastle. 7:30pm. £10.00. on the door. A Swung Eight event.
Fri 27: Merlin Roxby @ Prohibition Bar, Newcastle. Ragtime & stride piano. 8:00pm.

Sat 28: Tyneside Improvisers Workshop @ Ye Olde Cross, Ryton. 2:00-4:00pm. All welcome.
Sat 28: Secular Sounds in a Sacred Place @ Holy Cross Church, Ryton. 4:30-7:00pm. £10.00. Continuous performance featuring: Christian Alderson, Faye MacCalman, Sally Pilkington, John Pope. Event preceded by a Tyneside Improvisers Workshop (2:00pm, see above).
Sat 28: Entartete Musik @ The Globe, Newcastle. 7:30pm. A Brundibár Arts Festival event.

Sun 29: Vieux Carré Hot 4 @ Spanish City, Whitley Bay. 12 noon.
Sun 29: Musicians Unlimited @ Park Inn, Hartlepool. 1:00pm.
Sun 29: 4B @ The Exchange, North Shields. 3:00pm.
Sun 29: Hypnotic Brass Band @ Cluny, Newcastle. 7:00pm (doors). £20.00.
Sun 29: Jam No.12 @ Fabio's, Saddler St., Durham. 8:00pm. Free. Durham University Jazz Society jam session. All welcome (students & non-students).
Sun 29: Origin @ The Globe, Newcastle. 8:00pm.

Mon 30: Harmony Brass @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.

Tue 31: ???

February

Wed 01: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.
Wed 01: Darlington Big Band @ Darlington & Simpson Rolling Mills Social Club, Darlington. 7:00pm. Rehearsal session (open to the public).
Wed 01: 4B @ The Exchange, North Shields. 7:00pm.
Wed 01: Take it to the Bridge @ The Globe, Newcastle. 7:30pm.
Wed 01: Moonlight Serenade Orchestra UK: Glenn Miller & Big Band Spectacular @ Darlington Hippodrome. 7:30pm.

Thu 02: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ The Holystone, Whitley Road, North Tyneside. 1:00pm. Free.
Thu 02: Gateshead Jazz Appreciation Society @ Gateshead Central Library. 2:30-4:30pm. £1.00. All welcome.
Thu 02: Paul Skerritt Duo @ Tomahawk Steakhouse, High St., Yarm. 8:00pm.
Thu 02: Tees Hot Club @ Dorman's Club, Middlesbrough. 9:00pm.

Thursday, January 21, 2021

Keith Nichols (1945-2021)

Pianist Keith Nichols died today (Jan. 21). A noted authority on ragtime and early piano styles, Nichols was born in Ilford, Essex in 1945. As a young child he played piano and accordion, becoming a national junior champion on the latter instrument. From running bands at school to becoming a world-renowned performer and scholar of 'classic' jazz, Nichols did it all with panache and a great sense of humour. 

To list Nichols' achievements would run to several pages, in summary: student years at the Guildhall, performing with and/or arranging for Digby Fairweather, Harry Gold, the Midnite Follies Orchestra, a first visit to America working with Dick Sudhalter (playing Carnegie Hall), and, one to dine out on, recording an album with Bing Crosby. 

Nichols featured on the soundtrack of Pupi Avaki's 1991 film Bix (alongside other jazz world luminaries including Kenny Davern, Vince Giordano and Bob Wilber) playing the part of Hoagy Carmichael at the piano. Nichol's extensive discography includes many albums recorded for the American Stomp Off label and Cumbrian based Lake Records. In July 2006 Nichols appeared at Sage Gateshead in an ambitious, Arts Council supported, tribute to Paul Whiteman. Keith Nichols' Jazz Artists performed alongside the Northern Sinfonia to a capacity audience. The concert was recorded and issued on Lake Records (cat. no. LACD 245).      

Keith Nichols enjoyed a long association with the north east of England, Tyneside in particular. In the late eighties Mike Durham extended an invitation to Nichols to play a pub gig at the Lonsdale in Newcastle with the West Jesmond Rhythm Kings. The following three decades would see Nichols return time and again to perform at the Whitley Bay International Jazz Festival (Nichols' Collegians, Nichols' Wolverines, Nichols and his Rhythm) and later to participate in, and for a number of years, direct, the International Classic Jazz Party on North Tyneside (one of many memorable highlights being a concert presentation by the transatlantic Nichols-Duffee Orchestra). In addition, Dave Kerr's New Century Ragtime Orchestra would frequently call upon Nichols to join them in sellout concerts throughout the region.         

In a National Jazz Archive interview (www.nationaljazzarchive.org) Nichols said: I got to be a champion accordion player before I gave it up - the devil's music got me in the end at the age of 14. Keith Nichols b. 13 Feb 1945, d. 21 Jan 2021.    
Russell

6 comments :

Brian Bennett said...

So many happy memories of being entertained by Keith. Whether it was the back room of a pub, a jazz festival or concert hall, he was simply brilliant. Supreme musicianship on piano AND trombone. His comical stories and songs were hysterical.
A sad day indeed for the jazz world. RIP Keith.

carstairs said...

What an honour when Mike Durham asked me to be part of the rhythm section of Spats and his Rhythm Boys, lead by the inimitable Keith. With Spats on bjo, grr, uke and vocals,, Pete Soulsby or ,later, Nick Ward on drums, plus Frank Sjostrom on bass Sax we couldn't go wrong following Keith's lead. Quiet, humourous, hard-working ( and quick to modify the chords or routine without putting anyone's nose out of joint ) he was a joy to work with. I shall miss him as a 'real Professor of Jazz' and I am certain many others feel the same?

Anonymous said...

[Tiny point, It's Pupi Avati. See, https://www.imdb.com/name/nm0002194/ & https://variety.com/2019/film/news/pupi-avati-il-signor-diavalo-wide-1203219468/]

Brian Chester said...

What a shock when Patti rang to pass on the sad news. Such a fine musician and nice man. I've played and recorded with Keith on many occasions and it was always a delight. He will be badly (and sadly) missed.

David Burr said...

To say this is very sad would be to understate the general sense of shock at the loss of such a talented, influential and good-humoured individual. I spoke to him on the phone early in the New Year and he was characteristically looking forward to presenting a new project as soon as circumstances permitted.
We shall remember him.

Phil Rutherford said...

Such shocking news, the worst. Not just the public loss of a great performer, entertainer, arranger, jazz authority, one of the foundations of the Whitley Bay International Jazz Festival/Jazz Party, but the personal loss of one of the most genuine and generous people in the business, friend, mentor and gentleman. So many happy memories of playing alongside Keith in the West Jesmond Rhythm Kings, the New Century Ragtime Orchestra and at the Jazz Party. How we will miss him. RIP Keith. My condolences to Eve and to all his family and friends.

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