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Bebop Spoken There

John McDonough (reviewing Bright Red Dog’s In Vivo): “When you improvise on nothing, that’s what you get”. - DownBeat August 2021

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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.

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13,530 (and counting) posts since we started blogging 13 years ago. 948 of them this year alone and, so far, 112 this month (July 31).

Monday, May 24, 2021

Album review: Jack Brandfield - I'll Never be the Same

Jack Brandfield (tenor sax); Randy Napoleon (guitar); Rodney Whitaker (bass).

This one has been hanging around my in-tray for a couple of months whilst I tried to decide which of my team of reviewers it would  appeal to. The fact that there were no banjos involved widened the scope. However, as there were no originals - only standards - and guitarist Napoleon didn't go down Metheny Road or sport an Afro hairstyle and set his guitar on fire the field narrowed dramatically until it came to me that the only person who could do it justice was, in fact, Nobody Else But Me which, by coincidence, just happened to be the name of the first tune!

Brandfield (born 1998) is one of those musicians whom fashion dictates should be worshipping at the feet of Trane, Charles Lloyd and Ornette before embarking on his own journey into the unknown where harmony, melody and rhythm - those virtues that the old-timers held precious and are usually anathema to the free spirits of today - reign supreme.

Not so! this young man follows in the footsteps of such as Harry Allen and Scott Hamilton, bringing a new voice to the table without forgetting his history book and aware that the ghosts of Hawkins, Webster, Chu Berry, Buddy Tate and Arnett Cobb may be hovering overhead. If they are, I guess each will be nodding his head approvingly - I certainly am.

On guitar, if you like Barney Kessel, Herb Ellis, Jim Hall then Napoleon is your man and, without a drummer, it's all down to the bass and Whitaker proves his worth emphatically.

Once upon a time, every album seemed to have a ballad medley. It fell out of practice but it's back as Tessa Smith proved at Seven Arts yesterday and here we have Brandfield (I'm Thru With Love); Napoleon (Polka Dots and Moonbeams); Whitaker (You Don't Know What Love is) and Brandfield (That's All) creating their own. 

What a choice selection and, although they don't take off on any wild flights of fancy, it's pure magic. I'm going to play the album again and, although the ballad medley is number 11 of 12 I'm going to programme the machine so it's numero uno and I may even put it on repeat! - Lance 


Nobody Else But Me; Vignette; Where Leaves Change; Lover Come Back to Me; I'll Never be the Same; Andorinha; On a Slow Boat to China; Do Nothing Till You Hear From Me; Over the Rainbow; Bossa Nova Ova; Ballad Medley; Wildwood.

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