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Bebop Spoken There

Ethan Iverson: "Oscar Peterson famously said that Bud [Powell] played just too many wrong notes. He was really critical of Bud as a player, which I think is not right." - (DownBeat March 2021)

Archive quotes.

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'"

Postage

12,557 (and counting) posts since we started blogging 12 years ago. 276 of them this year alone and, so far, 127 this month (Feb. 28).

Wednesday March 3

HAPPY BIRTHDAY MILES WATSON

Sunday, February 14, 2021

Album review: Tommy Flanagan - In His Own Sweet Time

Tommy Flanagan (piano).

By 1994 Tommy Flanagan had played and recorded with just about anyone who was anyone in jazz. Ella Fitzgerald, John Coltrane, Sonny Rollins, Miles Davis, Coleman Hawkins, Roy Eldridge, Ben Webster, Harry Edison - a seemingly endless list. And yet, incredible as it may seem, until that October day 26 years ago he'd never given a solo concert. It took a lot of persuasion, with his wife and manager Diana at the negotiating table, to get him to agree to appear at the small Bavarian town of Neuberg on the Danube but, eventually, he gave in although his post concert reaction was in direct contrast to what was heard by the audience.

"It was horrible, I will never do something like this again," he said afterwards adding that he thought the audience were just being sympathetic and generous with their applause and, as a result, the recording lay gathering dust in the record company's vaults until now, almost 20 years after his death.

After listening, I find it incredible that he could sell himself so short. Flanagan doesn't deliver a Peterson or a Garner style blockbuster. You don't gasp in awe at his technique. Instead you appreciate the depth of his harmonies, his reconstruction of the melody, the sheer beauty, the magic that flows from his heart, his head and his hands via the  Bösendorfer Grand. If he was effected by nerves that night, and by his comments he must have been a bundle of them, they certainly don't show.

It's over 50 years since I last heard Tommy Flanagan with Ella and JATP. It's been a long time but this solo album was well worth waiting for.

There's a YouTube video of him being interviewed by Billy Taylor in which he gives a beautiful rendition of Tadd Dameron's Smooth as the Wind which is also the opening tune on the album.

Lance

Available on the ENJA label from Feb. 21.

Smooth as the Wind; If You Could See me Now; Untired Blues; Some Other Spring; How Long Has This Been Going On?; Who Can I Turn To?; Just Squeeze me; Day Dream; Valse Hot; Good Bye*.

* Spelling as per sleeve/booklet. Note: Some sites list an additional track - Dance of the Infidels but it's not on my copy!

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