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Bebop Spoken There

Steve Fishwick: “I can’t get behind the attitude that new is always somehow better than old”. (Jazz Journal, April 15, 2019).

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!

Holly Cooper, Mouthpiece Music: "Lance writes pull quotes like no one else!"

Simon Spillett: A lovely review from the dean of jazz bloggers, Lance Liddle...

Josh Weir: I love the writing on bebop spoken here... I think the work you are doing is amazing.

Postage

16527 (and counting) posts since we started blogging 16 years ago. 407 of them this year alone and, so far, 29 this month (June 12).

From This Moment On ...

June

Thu 13: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ The Holystone, Whitley Road, North Tyneside. 1:00pm. Free.
Thu 13: Indigo Jazz Voices @ The Globe, Newcastle. 7:45pm. £5.00. Upstairs.
Thu 13: Musicians Unlimited @ Dorman’s, Middlesbrough. 8:00pm.
Thu 13: Jazz Guys @ Tynedale Beer & Cider Festival, Corbridge. 8:00pm.
Thu 13: Merlin Roxby @ Prohibition Bar, Newcastle. 8:00pm. Free. Ragtime piano. A ‘Jar on the Bar’ gig.
Thu 13: Tees Hot Club @ Dorman’s Club, Middlesbrough. 8:30pm. Guest band: Musicians Unlimited

Fri 14: Mark Williams Trio @ The Old Library, Auckland Castle, Bishop Auckland. 1:00pm. £8.00.
Fri 14: Classic Swing @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm. Free.
Fri 14: Rendezvous Jazz @ The Monkseaton Arms. 1:00pm. Free.
Fri 14: New Orleans Preservation Jazz Band @ The Oxbridge Hotel, Stockton. 1:00pm. £5.00.
Fri 14: Strictly Smokin’ Big Band @ Queen’s Hall, Hexham. ‘Ella & Ellington’. 7:30pm. £18.00.
Fri 14: Customs House Big Band @ Customs House, South Shields. 7:30pm. Donations (online, min. £3.00.).

Sat 15: Keith Barrett & Andrew Porritt @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 12 noon. Free. A Cullercoats Festival event.
Sat 15: NUJO Jazz Jam @ Cobalt Studios, Newcastle. 7:00pm.
Sat 15: James Birkett & Emma Fisk @ Sunderland Minster. 7:30pm. £15.00., £8.00. (u16s free). ‘The Great American Songbook’. A Bishopwearmouth Choral Society event, conductor David Murray.
Sat 15: Jude Murphy & Dan Stanley @ Prohibition Bar, Newcastle. 8:00pm. Free. A ‘Jar on the Bar’ gig.

Sun 16: Jason Isaacs @ Stack, Seaburn SR6 8AA. 1:00-2:45pm. Free.
Sun 16: Paul Skerritt @ Hibou Blanc, Newcastle. 2:00pm.
Sun 16: Gaz Hughes Trio @ Queen’s Hall, Hexham. 3:00pm. £10.00.
Sun 16: 4B @ The Ticket Office, Whitley Bay. 3:00pm. Free.
Sun 16: Gaz Hughes Trio @ The Globe, Newcastle. 8:00pm.
Sun 16: Jazz Jam @ Fabio’s Bar, Saddler St., Durham. 8:00pm. Free. A Durham University Jazz Society event. All welcome.

Mon 17: Harmony Brass @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm. Free.
Mon 17: ‘Tower of Power’ @ The Library Bar, Saddler St., Durham . 7:30pm.Free. A Durham University Jazz Society event. All welcome.

Tue 18: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ The Victoria & Albert Inn, Seaton Delaval. 12:30pm. £13.00. ‘Jazz, Sausage ‘n’ Mash’…’with Onion Gravy’!
Tue 18: Jam Session @ The Black Swan, Newcastle. 7:30pm. Free. House trio: Stu Collingwood, Paul Grainger, Tim Johnston.
Tue 18: Libby Goodridge & Ben Davies @ The Lost Wanderer, Leazes Park Road, Newcastle. 8:00pm. £6.00. Triple bill, inc. Goodridge & Davies (jazz).

Wed 19: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm. Free.
Wed 19: Darlington Big Band @ Darlington & Simpson Rolling Mills Social Club, Darlington. 7:00pm. Free. Rehearsal session (open to the public).
Wed 19: Take it to the Bridge @ The Globe, Newcastle. 7:30pm. Free.

Thursday, July 08, 2021

Album review: Daniel Herskedal - Harbour

Daniel Herskedal (tuba, bass trumpet; Eyolf Dale (piano, celesta); Helge Andreas Norbakken (drums, marimba)

Freshly caught from an island off the coast of Norway, the latest programmatic imagined-landscape fantasia from the tuba wizard and his talented compatriots, with publicity photos looking like a flier for a new, moody Scandi crime drama.  This is the core of the band who graced Sage 2 in 2019 and have been rightly lauded for their trilogy of albums Slow Eastbound Train, The Roc and Voyage.

Harbour is an extension of this musical line with Edition Records, rather than Herskedal’s austere 2020 solo lockdown offering “Call for Winter’, which won the Spellemann Award (Norwegian Grammy). Here we have a continuous cinematic vision, blending folk, jazz, classical and Arabic strains – an uninterrupted line from Persian Gulf to Norwegian fjord – by sea of course.  

This version of the band omits the lush viola playing of Bergmund Waal Skaslien, and initially I feared this would be a noticeable loss. While Skaslien is hardly a soloist in the mould of Mahavishnu’s Jerry Goodman, or the remarkable more contemporary Adam Baldych, he augmented the band’s sound perfectly with swooning legato lines. Interestingly, I hardly missed him here, as Herskedal effortlessly takes on both lead and bass lines to compensate, and Eyolf Dale steps up a gear with achingly wholesome melodic lines echoing and inter-weaving with the tuba.

Herskedal’s tuba mastery and extended techniques (singing, puffing, swooping) seem to have reached an even higher plane - literally sometimes, at pitches some trumpeters would be pleased with! But he never strays beyond artistry into showing off, and the composition, sound and orchestration are so well executed that you forget the unusual instrumentation.  Supporting and enhancing the virtuoso tuba and piano is the restless and atmospheric force of nature emanating from percussion maestro Norbakken, who starred on the recent excellent LAN Atlantico (link).

Standout tracks include The Lighthouse on the Horizon, scion of The Lighthouse on the 2019 Voyage, with gorgeous call and response between piano and tuba.  Hunters Point Drydocks is a delightful syncopated romp in fivewith light as a feather tuba bass figures.  Dancing dhow deckhands is an Arabic romp, an intricate and multi-dimensional adventure in the eastern soundscapes beloved of Yazz Ahmed.

Herskedal has pulled off the difficult trick of further developing and extending his line of conceptually similar albums with another significant work sitting on the Nordic classical-folk shoreline of jazz.  Very highly recommended – a marine treasure chest of subtle melody, emotion and rhythmic intrigue, which yields fresh delights at every listening.

Chris K

 Release date: 02.07.21 CD, LP, Digital at Edition and Bandcamp.

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