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Bebop Spoken There

Maurice J. Summerfield: "Over dinner one night Barney [Kessel] told me about his seminar The Effective Guitarist, and in 1972 my company presented the first of twelve annual UK seminars in Newcastle upon Tyne." - (Just Jazz Guitar, September 1997)

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!"

Postage

15087 (and counting) posts since we started blogging 15 years ago. 106 of them this year alone and, so far, 4 this month (Feb. 1).

From This Moment On ...

February

Sat 04: Alligator Gumbo @ St Augustine's Parish Centre, Darlington. 12:30pm.
Sat 04: Play Jazz! workshop @ The Globe, Newcastle. 1:30pm. Tutor: John Pope - Up Your Rhythm Game. £25.00. Enrol at: www.jazz.coop.
Sat 04: King Bees @ Grainger Market, Newcastle. 6:30pm (doors). Live music, comedy, DJs, food stalls. £10.00. advance, £15.00. on the door. Blues band King Bees on stage 9:45-11:15pm. A Great Market Caper event.
Sat 04: Jives Aces @ The Witham, Barnard Castle. 7:30pm.
Sat 04: Renegade Brass Band @ The Cluny, Newcastle. 7:30pm (doors).
Sat 04: Rendezvous Jazz @ Red Lion, Earsdon. 8:00pm. £3.00.

Sun 05 Vieux Carré Hot 4 @ Spanish City, Whitley Bay. 12 noon.
Sun 05: Rivkala @ Cumberland Arms, Newcastle. 6:00pm.
Sun 05: Jive Aces @ Fire Station, Sunderland. 7:30pm.
Sun 05: Dale Storr @ The Globe, Newcastle. 8:00pm.

Sun 05: Jam No.13 @ Fabio's, Saddler St., Durham. Free. Durham University Jazz Society jam session. All welcome (students & non-students alike).

Mon 06: Harmony Brass @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.

Tue 07: Jam session @ Black Swan, Newcastle Arts Centre. 7:30pm. House trio: Alan Law (piano); Paul Grainger (double bass); Rob Walker (drums). Jam session reverts to a first & third Tuesday in the month schedule.

Wed 08: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.
Wed 08: Jam session @ Prohibition Bar, Newcastle. 1:00pm. Free. TBC.
Wed 08: Darlington Big Band @ Darlington & Simpson Rolling Mills Social Club, Darlington. 7:00pm. Rehearsal session (open to the public).
Wed 08: 4B @ The Exchange, North Shields. 7:00pm.
Wed 08: Take it to the Bridge @ The Globe, Newcastle. 7:30pm.

Thu 09: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ The Holystone, Whitley Road, North Tyneside. 4:00pm (this week only). Free.
Thu 09: Indigo Jazz Voices @ The Globe, Newcastle. 7:45pm. £5.00.
Thu 09: Tees Hot Club @ Dorman's Club, Middlesbrough. 9:00pm.

Fri 10: Alan Barnes w Dean Stockdale Trio @ Bishop Auckland Town Hall. 1:00pm. £7.00. SOLD OUT!
Fri 10: Classic Swing @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.
Fri 10: New Orleans Preservation Jazz Band @ Oxbridge Hotel, Stockton. 1:00pm. £5.00.
Fri 10: Rendezvous Jazz @ The Monkseaton Arms, Monkseaton. 1:00pm.
Fri 10: Alan Barnes w Dean Stockdale Trio @ Traveller's Rest, Darlington. 8:00pm. £12.00.

Saturday, July 31, 2021

Album review: Keith Loftis Quartet - Original State

Keith Loftis (tenor, soprano sax); John Chin (piano); Eric Wheeler (bass); Willie Jones III (drums).

A belter! Those were words that sprung to mind when Willie Jones III kicked off the opening track (Oak Cliff) followed by a 'no prisoners taken' solo by Loftis, with Chin and Wheeler digging in. This was comparable with anything from the Blue Note label back in the day.

Premonition, composed by Michael Stanton, has an effective bass intro, Loftis wails over a compelling piano riff before Chin moves to centre stage driven on by Willie J 3 - a brief quote from Work Song brings Wheeler back and Loftus takes it out.

Fall's Beauty is, like the first number and the next five, a Loftis original. Normally I cringe when I hear/see the word "original" - not so here. A meditative, exploratory piece that shows off Loftis' rich tone with just enough vibrato to enhance the sound. Rather like a woman applying lipstick but not overdoing it. 

Brigitte's Smile is dedicated to neither a former French screen idol nor to a woman who lives in the next street to me but to his wife. Mrs Loftis must have one helluva smile to inspire such a swinger of a tune.

The Intangible, another great blowing tune brings to mind the great Dexter Gordon although Loftis doesn't fall back on quite so many quotes as Dex was prone to do. 

Smoke & Mirrors, another good blower. When you've been listening to jazz for as long as I have, you tend to become a little blasé and adopt an I've heard it all before attitude and then something like this comes along and it's as if you're 15 and hearing it for the first time.

WiFi Addiction, a solid 12 bar. This music recreates a time when the title track would have been a reference to a husband's attraction to his spouse.

For the Love of You, a Joe Tex, Isley Brothers' number, sees Loftis switch to soprano with a killer solo from Chin and an equally homicidal solo from the leader before Wheeler sedates matters with a mega melodic solo.

A Weaver of Dreams. Beautiful. Ballad playing at its best - cooler than cool. A fitting end to a tremendous hard bop plus album.

Of course there's more to it than just the leader. Chin and Wheeler are of like standing whilst Willie Jones the Third is equally as good as when I heard him with Cedar Walton at Ronnie's some ten or so years ago.

This is Loftis' first album in over a decade - oh what I have missed! 

Now, belatedly, I find out that I actually heard Keith with Abdullah Ibrahim at Sage Gateshead in 2010 although, reading my review, I don't think the horns were heavily featured. 

Also, I note that he played in a band with Jean Toussaint at Bishop Auckland in a tribute concert to the late trumpet player Abram Wilson who died so tragically young. Look at the line-up: Jason Marsalis (drums);  Keith Loftis, Peter King,  Jean Toussaint (saxes); Trevor Mires (trombone); Mark Lewandowski (bass) and rising star New York trumpeter, Alphonso Horne. How did I miss that one? Bishop Auckland's a mere 30 miles or so away! I bet Tony Eales was there! Lance

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