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Bebop Spoken There

Jennifer Wharton: "People forget that the trombone is so glorious. It can be like going to church, or getting ready for battle. It can be a lot of things....For a longtime I was the only female trombonist in New York," - (DownBeat May 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'"

The Strictly Smokin' Big Band included Be Bop Spoken Here (sic) in their 5 Favourite Jazz Blogs.

Postage

13,218 (and counting) posts since we started blogging 13 years ago. 637 of them this year alone and, so far, 45 this month (May 11).

Coming soon ...



May 20: Vieux Carré Jazzmen at The Holystone (Indoors!)
May 20 Maine Street Jazzmen are back at Sunniside Social Club.
May 23: Vieux Carré Hot Four are back at The Spanish City.

June 21: Jazz in the Afternoon are back at Cullercoats Crescent Club. (Revised date).
June 23: Vieux Carré Jazzmen are back at Cullercoats Crescent Club. (Revised date).

Saturday, March 20, 2021

The Len Phillips Big Band live @ Abbey Road - March 21

The natives were getting restless. 2:30pm was the advertised start time and it was fast approaching 3:00pm. The sidebar comments provided light relief for a while but, just as I was about to abandon ship, a few bars of What's New? erupted from the speakers. I don't know if this is the band's theme song or if it was a reflection on a "jazz" gig starting late but, whatever, we were up and running.

Sammy Nestico's arrangement of Strike Up the Band got things moving and it included a fine tenor solo from one of the saxophone players - there weren't many name checks although, in fairness there weren't very many solos to give a shout out to.

This was a singer's night or, to be more precise a Matt Ford night. Ford's a good singer as he proved on Lady is a Tramp, Blue Skies, South of the Border, I Wanna be Like You, In the Still of the Night and From Russia With Love.

There were a couple of instrumentals squeezed in during this first set. George Hogg and Russell Bennett made a decent fist of imagining what Ted Heath's ace trumpet men Bobby Pratt and Bert Ezard would have done to On a Slow Boat to China. The camera man gave us a shot of two trombones. Harold Fisher worked out on that good old perennial, Buddy Rich's Love For Sale. He did good, he'd obviously played it before - him and every other big band drummer in the world! There were solos by tenor and trumpet but, again, no names no pack drill although names were read out to some of the many listeners who had birthdays in and around now.

Interval time and a 1996 interview with the band's founder the late Len Phillips. What a lovely guy and how proud he would have been to witness his brainchild playing at Abbey Road.

Back to today and off they went with Intermission Riff. A fitting choice as he was an avid Kenton fan. I wonder if he ever met Margaret Barnes?

Matt was back for Something's Gotta Give, Make Someone Happy and Sonny Boy. My heart leapt when it was announced that this latter number was based on the Woody Herman version from the album My Kind of Jolson. I remember vividly hearing it by Woody at Newcastle City Hall way back and the goosebumps I got when the band came in after the vocal and raised it up a tone. The goosebumps returned when I heard it again today!

Chris Traves wasn't in the trombone section - he was up in the control box - nevertheless he vacated this responsible position to play Mood Indigo along with Jon Shenoy on clarinet.

Nicola Emmanuelle was billed as 'a special guest' which suggested that Matt Ford was but an ordinary guest. The special guest sang Can't Buy me Love - you couldn't play Abbey Road without singing a Beatles' number and, as Ella had also recorded the same song here, she  had few options. She was great and I look forward to hearing her again.

Matt returned for Besame Mucho and Spiderman which sounded rather like Sing, Sing, Sing before leaving us with How Do You Speak to an Angel? - How indeed!

An enjoyable afternoon that really needed a better venue or were they recording?

Lance

MD Joe Pettitt; Matt Ford (vocals); Nicole Emmanuelle (vocals); Nigel Hailwood, Jon Shenoy, David Black, Simon Mars, Gemma Moore (reeds); Jon Stokes, Richard Wigley, Tom Dunnett, Bob Maslin (trombones); Russell Bennett, Andy Gathercole, George Hogg, James Davison (trumpets); Bunny Thompson (piano); Paul Morgan (double bass); Harold Fisher (drums).

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