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Bebop Spoken There

Delfeayo Marsalis: "Slide Hampton once told me that it's not always the person that is playing the highest or playing the fastest that's making the greatest impact." - (DownBeat March 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!"


15229 (and counting) posts since we started blogging 15 years ago. 248 of them this year alone and, so far, 61 this month (March 20).

From This Moment On ...


Mon 20: Harmony Brass @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.
Mon 20: Central Bar Quintet plays Wes Montgomery @ Central Bar, Gateshead. 7:30pm. Feat. Joe Steels.

Tue 21: Paul Skerritt @ The Rabbit Hole, Hallgarth St., Durham DH1 3AT. 7:00pm. Paul Skerritt's (solo) weekly residency.
Tue 21: Jam session @ Black Swan, Newcastle Arts Centre. 7:30pm. House trio: Jacob Egglestone (guitar); Jamie Watkins (bass guitar); Bailey Rudd (drums).

Wed 22: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.
Wed 22: Darlington Big Band @ Traveller's Rest, Cockerton. 7:00pm. Rehearsal session (open to the public). Note change of venue - this week only.
Wed 22: 4B @ The Exchange, North Shields. 7:00pm.
Wed 22: Take it to the Bridge @ The Globe, Newcastle. 7:30pm.

Thu 23: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ The Holystone, Whitley Road, North Tyneside. 4:00-6:00pm. Free.
Thu 23: NUJO Jazz Jam @ Bar Loco, Newcasatle. From 6:30pm 'til late. Free. Newcastle University Jazz Orchestra jam session. All welcome (students & non-students).
Thu 23: Kerrin Tatman + John Garner & John Pope @ Cobalt Studios, Newcastle. 7:00pm.
Thu 23: Sunna Gunnlaugs & Julia Hülsmann @ Sage Gateshead. 8:00pm. A two-piano gig. A Sage Gateshead-JNE promotion.
Thu 23: Merlin Roxby @ Prohibition Bar, Newcastle. 8:00pm. Ragtime piano.
Thu 23: Sleep Suppressor @ The Globe, Newcastle. 8:00pm. £10.00., £8.00. adv. Upstairs.
Thu 23: Tees Hot Club @ Dorman's Club, Middlesbrough. 9:00pm.

Fri 24: Classic Swing @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.
Fri 24: New Orleans Preservation Jazz Band @ Oxbridge Hotel, Stockton. 1:00pm. £5.00.
Fri 24: Rendezvous Jazz @ The Monkseaton Arms, Monkseaton. 1:00pm.
Fri 24: FILM: Mo' Better Blues @ Forum Cinema, Hexham. 7:00pm.
Fri 24: Ian Millar & Dominic Spencer @ Scarth Hall, Staindrop, Co. Durham. 8:00pm. £10.00.
Fri 24: Archipelago + Bulbils @ Cobalt Studios, Newcastle. 7:00pm.

Sat 25: Vermont Big Band @ Walker Community Centre, Walker, Newcastle. 7:30pm. Fundraiser for Benfield Juniours Football Club. Hot food available, BYOB.
Sat 25: John Logan & Friends @ Prohibition Bar, Newcastle. 8:00pm. Rat Pack, Motown etc. 8:00pm. Free (donations).

Sun 26: Musicians Unlimited @ Park Inn, Hartlepool. 1:00pm.
Sun 26: More Jam @ The Globe, Newcastle. 3:00pm. Free.
Sun 26: 4B @ The Exchange, North Shields. 3:00pm.
Sun 26: Outlines @ The Globe, Newcastle. 8:00pm. JNE promotion (upstairs).

Mon 27: Harmony Brass @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.

Friday, February 19, 2021

Album review: Enrico Pieranunzi & Bert Joris - Afterglow

Enrico Pieranunzi  (piano),  Bert Joris (trumpet, flugelhorn) 

Veteran Italian pianist Pieranunzi has recorded prolifically, in many settings since the mid-1970s, and he teams up here with the experienced Belgian Bert Joris on trumpet and flugel for an intimate and relaxed session of originals. Despite their considerable output, I have to say neither player had made much impression on me until hearing this new album. I guess that although jazz audiences on the mainland are famously large, much continental jazz goes under the radar in the UK, swamped by homegrown and transatlantic produce, and not helped by the infrequency of touring here. On the evidence of this Italian-Belgian product, we need to salvage some European jazz alongside the threatened loss of Chianti and Trappist beer!  

Trumpet and piano is a somewhat unusual but highly effective pairing, to my ears at least. A very classy recent example is Avisahai Cohen and Yonathan Avishai’s 2019 Playing the Room (link). The format lends itself to the relaxed ballad, and this mood is visited here, but with livelier and freer interludes.   Pieranunzi’s style is rooted in straight ahead bop, and he is often compared to Bill Evans, but with a more cinematic tendency, allied to some classical echoes.  I have to say the opening mood here of Siren’s Lounge reminded me of a privileged evening in the company of Messrs. Edis and Hardy in the Beaumont Hotel in Hexham back in pre-Covid days!  Pieranunzi has form in this idiom, having recorded with Chet Baker back in 1979, but while Joris never assaults the ear-drums, he has a much more dynamic range and technique than Baker, with purposeful lyrical intent, á  la Enrico Rava.  

The eleven jointly composed tracks are all quite short, three to six minutes long, and span the relaxed and lyrical, awash with languid space, through to the more urgent and intense, although never frantic.   

The title track, Afterglow, is the standout, not to be confused with Ed Sheeran’s rather different 2020 hit (or God forbid Genesis’ 1976 bombastic banger!). This one is a delicate ballad, opening with wistful piano joined by perfectly intersecting trumpet before passing the wholesome theme back and forth, carefully treading the fine line between sentimental and cheesy.  

Millie takes a more playful and quirky turnbefore the delightful Cradle Song for Mattia blends joy at the birth of a nephew with grace and poignancy recalling Avishai Cohen’s similar folk lullaby Shir Eres. The harder edged and hipper Five Plus Five embraces dissonant piano voicings, and in fact the second half of the album heads into freer and more exploratory spaces. This range, and the sheer grandeur of the flugel on How Could We Forget, dispels any notion that this is merely high class lounge jazz.  

At first listening, the limited tonal palette and homespun nonchalance disguise the depth and subtlety of both playing and composition,  so I would recommend a few listens at twilight to fully appreciate the Afterglow: A frolic of crimson is the spreading glory of the sky, heaven’s jocund maid flaunting a trailed red robe’ (T.E. Hulme) 

Chris K 

Challenge Records UPC0608917346022 Released January 2021 Recorded Sept. 2018. 


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