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Bebop Spoken There

Kasia Delgado: "The naughtiest thing that I did at school was bunk off a maths lesson to practice my saxophone for a jazz band." - (i newspaper October 21, 2021)

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! --

Postage

13,837 (and counting) posts since we started blogging 13 years ago. 1254 of them this year alone and, so far, 66 this month (Oct. 23).

From This Moment On ...

October

Mon 25: Jazz in the Afternoon @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.

Tue 26: Classic Swing @ Ship inn, Monkseaton. 1:00pm. The post-lockdown resumption of the band’s weekly residency will be fortnightly until further notice.
Tue 26: Jam session @ Black Swan, Newcastle Arts Centre. 8:00pm. The post-lockdown resumption of the Black Swan’s fortnightly jam session.

Wed 27: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.
Wed 27: Darlington Big Band @ Darlington & Simpson Rolling Mills Club, Darlington. 7:00pm. Rehearsal session (open to the public).
Wed 27: Take it to the Bridge @ The Globe, Newcastle. 7:30pm.

Thu 28: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ The Holystone, North Tyneside. 1:00pm.
Thu 28: J Frisco @ Newcastle University. 1:15pm. ONLINE ONLY (YouTube).
Thu 28: ’58 Jazz Collective @ Hops & Cheese, Hartlepool. 7:30pm.
Thu 28: Maine Street Jazzmen @ Sunniside Social Club, Gateshead. 8:30pm.
Thu 28: Tees Hot Club @ Dorman's Club, Middlesbrough. 9:00pm.

Fri 29: James Birkett & Bradley Johnston @ Gala Theatre, Durham. 1:00pm..
Fri 29: Classic Swing @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm..
Fri 29: Rendezvous Jazz @ Monkseaton Arms, Monkseaton. 1:00pm..
Fri 29: New Orleans Preservation Jazz Band @ Oxbridge Hotel, Stockton. 1:00pm.

Sun 31 Vieux Carré Hot 4 @ Spanish City, Whitley Bay. 12 noon..
Sun 31: Musicians Unlimited @ South Durham Social Club, Hartlepool. 1:00pm. .
Sun 31: More Jam @ The Globe, Newcastle. 3:00pm. Jam session..
Sun 31: Alison Rayner Quintet @ The Globe, Newcastle. 8:00pm.

Thursday, June 17, 2021

Ten trumpet players who worked with Charlie Parker (well eleven actually)

Dizzy Gillespie was one of the founding fathers of bebop, in at its inception at Minton’s with others such as Kenny Clarke, Monk, Charlie Christian and Bud Powell. He was the doyen of all the ‘modern’ trumpet players at the time. Blessed with great technique, ideas, humour. showmanship, business acumen and ebullience, he was a member of the Parker Quintet in 1945/46 and appeared in many “one-off” gigs with Bird in the years that followed.

Howard McGhee, an accomplished trumpeter and something of a transitional figure from ‘swing’ to ‘bop’. In Bird’s group on the disastrous Lover Man session in the summer of ’46, he resumed his position on Charlie’s release from Camarillo Hospital in the spring of ’47. ‘Maggie’ had a brilliant technique, a bright tone, fast fingering with much use of the upper register notes. His career was interrupted by ‘personal problems’ and he was on and off the scene for many years in the ‘50s, ‘60s and70s.

Miles Davis was a teenager when he joined Bird’s group first in ’46 then later from late ’47 to December ’48 and his playing was much influenced by Gillespie. However he was a young man ‘searching for his own voice’ within the maelstrom of bebop, and in his own words “used to quit every night at Bird’s side”.

Subsequently he became a huge star in his own right - constantly evolving his playing throughout a wonderful career.

Kenny Dorham took Miles’ place in December ’48 leaving at the end of spring ’49 following Bird’s successful appearance at the Paris Jazz Festival and short tour of France. Again influenced earlier by Gillespie, Kenny developed into a fine musician with a warm, burnished tone, who moved first into ’hard bop’ then ‘modal’ styles of playing.

Fats Navarro, the virtuoso of the trumpet, never actually worked regularly for Bird in the quintet although he appeared on various gigs from time to time. Blessed with a fluent, imaginative style, he could ascend and descend effortlessly in and out of the ‘stratosphere’ of the instrument’s top range. My opinion is that Charlie thought Navarro was ‘too good’ to be in his band because he didn’t want to be outplayed on the stand by anybody and Fats was more than capable of that…

Colourful character Red Rodney took over Bird’s trumpet chair from late ’49 to roughly spring ’51. He had a bright, brash tone and a fluent style to match his personality and is featured on some of the ‘live’ recordings of the period. His subsequent career was marked by absences from the scene due to incarceration. However, he always bounced back ready to move on. For a while he played in a Los Angeles casino band and later acted as ‘consultant’ to Clint Eastwood’s film Bird as well as doing some teaching.

Rolf Ericson joined Bird’s combo for the tour of Sweden in 1950. An accomplished player, he knew all the repertoire and could handle himself with assured solos and group work in the bop style. He had a long and successful career in jazz working steadily with many of the great names including Ellington. He ran his own big band for a while as well as playing as a freelance musician in radio, tv and film work

“Little” Benny Harris worked for Charlie on and off from spring ’51 to summer ’53. As a trumpet player, he was capable enough but prone to erratic and slipshod playing at times. Parker liked him though because ha had composed several of the bebop anthems notably Ornithology, Wahoo, Crazyology  and Reets and I.

Chet Baker was a member of Bird’s group on at least two occasions. Firstly in June ’52 at the Trade Winds Club in Inglewood, California then as a participant in “The West Coast in Jazz” package on tour in late ’53. Charlie was impressed by what he heard and foresaw Baker’s later great success. Despite ‘personal problems’ Chet was very popular in the jazz world and worked regularly as a sideman and leader of his own group in the U S and around the world.

Herb Pomeroy joined Bird’s group on two occasions when he worked at the “Hi-Hat” Club in Boston in June and September ’53. A fine musician, he played in and led many big bands of the era as well as teaching at the Lenox School of Jazz and Berklee College of Music. His view was that jazz should be listened to ‘live’ rather than on disc.

Herbie Williams briefly joined the quintet in January ’54 in Boston. Charlie Parker was not in good shape at that time with personal issues in his life and contract disputes arising from his musical work. Nevertheless, Herbie was comfortable in this environment and played with confidence.

Footnote: It is known also that trumpeters Clifford Brown, Joe Gordon and Ira Sullivan played briefly in Charlie’s groups circa 1954. Dave Brownlow.        

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