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Bebop Spoken There

Jeff Coffin: "I'm trying to find a creative way of being creative." - (DownBeat June 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.

Postage

13,348 (and counting) posts since we started blogging 13 years ago. 766 of them this year alone and, so far, 40 this month (June 11).

From This Moment On

JUNE

Fri 11: Faye Aspinall @ Prohibition Bar, Newcastle. 8:00pm. Solo, ‘postmodern jazz singer’.

Sat 12: Tribute to Gerry Hughes (Tees Hot Club) @ Dorman's Club, Middlesbrough. 12 noon (jazz 2:00-3:30pm). £5.00. Outdoor event. Details from 01642 823813.

Sun 13: Vieux Carré Hot Four @ Spanish City, Whitley Bay (12 noon).

Sun 13: Sunday Jazz @ The Radio Rooms, Berwick (2:00pm).

Sun 13: Charlotte Keeffe Quartet @ The Globe, Newcastle. (8:00pm). £10:00. Advance booking essential at: www.jazz.coop.

Thursday, May 13, 2021

DVD Review: Low Down

Based on the turbulent life of jazz pianist Joe Albany, this award-winning film came out on DVD in 2016  and covers the relationship problems he had raising his young daughter Amy in a tough area of Hollywood populated by a collection of misfits, dope fiends and hustlers etc.  Directed by Jeff Pries who had a hand in making of the Bruce Webber film Let's Get Lost. However, this is not a documentary but a well-written story by Amy Albany herself which adds an air of authenticity to the proceedings.

Joe Albany is played by John Hawkes (born 1959) and believe me, he really gets to grips with the part. Not only does he look like Joe but has his voice down to a T.   An amazing performance!


Amy’s part is taken by Elle Fanning (younger sister of Dakota Fanning) and she is just fantastic in what must have been a difficult role, winning her a best actress award. I should point out that the film covers the years 1974-76 so Joe's later period is only briefly referred to.


Other parts are played by Glenn Close (mother of Joe), Lena Headley (Joe’s hard drinking wife), an actress born in Bermuda of British parents who has appeared in Game of Thrones plus many films, and Flea who plays one of the strange residents of the seedy area that Amy encounters.


After giving it a lot of thought, I think Low Down could be the greatest movie with a jazz theme made so far, or at least that I have seen. No doubt some may disagree but as it says on the cover of the DVD - LEGEND-GENIUS-ADDICT-FATHER, A fitting tribute to Joe Albany.

Mike Farmer

4 comments :

Lance said...

I need to check this one out. However, although you wrote about the film, you didn't mention any actual music or who dubbed what for whom which I think would have added interest.

Russell said...

IMDB is a useful resource. Of the many musicians listed as appearing on the soundtrack, Kirk Knuffke plays trumpet.

Mike Farmer said...

Hi Lance- I did consider including info on the sound track but I didn't want to make the review too long. There is such a lot going on in the film that to reveal too much might ruin it for any prospective buyer of the DVD. The music kind of takes a minor role in the drama but I take your point.---Mike

Mike Farmer said...

Re Russell's mention of Kirk Knuffke made me check him out on Spotify.Nice player but if the lettering on the back of the DVD was a bit clearer so I could read it, or maybe like Lance sometimes says, might be time to go to Specsavers.

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