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Farewell Blues

R I P Terry Shannon - November 5, 1929 - October 29, 2022
R I P Oliver Soden - ? - November 6, 2022
R I P Top Cat Daphne - ? - November 24, 2022.

Bebop Spoken There

Michael League: "We flew back from Europe, and the second gig we [Snarky Puppy] did was in Arcata, California. There were two people. And one of them was the bartender." - (DownBeat December, 2022)

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

14806 (and counting) posts since we started blogging 14 years ago. 1074 of them this year alone and, so far, 73 this month (Nov.24).

From This Moment On ...

November

Sat 26: Rat Pack - Swingin' at the Sands @ Middlesbrough Town Hall. 7:30pm.
Sat 26: Jean Toussaint @ Sage Gateshead. 8:00pm.

Sun 27: Vieux Carré Hot 4 @ Spanish City, Whitley Bay. 12 noon.
Sun 27: Musicians Unlimited @ Park Inn, Hartlepool. 1:00pm.
Sun 27: Paul Skerritt @ Hibou Blanc, Newcastle. 2:00pm.
Sun 27: Foundry Jazz Ensemble @ The Exchange, North Shields. 3:00pm.
Sun 27: More Jam @ The Globe, Newcastle. 3:00pm. Free. Sitters-in & audience welcome.
Sun 27: Nu Civilisation Orchestra @ Fire Station, Sunderland. 7:30pm.
Sun 27: Jamil Sheriff's Five Gold Rings @ The Globe, Newcastle. 8:00pm.

Mon 28: Harmony Brass @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.
Mon 28: Jeremy McMurray & Friends @ Billingham Catholic Club. 7:30pm. £5.00. at the door. A SVP fundraiser for Xmas food hampers.

Tue 29: Jam session @ Black Swan, Newcastle. 7:30pm. House trio: Alan Law, Paul Grainger, Rob Walker.

Wed 30: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.
Wed 30: Castillo Nuevo @ Revoluçion de Cuba, Newcastle. 6:00pm.
Wed 30: Darlington Big Band @ Darlington & Simpson Rolling Mills Club, Darlington. 7:00pm. Rehearsal session (open to the public).
Wed 30: 4B @ The Exchange, North Shields. 7:00pm.
Wed 30: Take it to the Bridge @ The Globe, Newcastle. 7:30pm.

December
Thu 01: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ The Holystone, North Tyneside. 1:00pm.
Thu 01: New York Jazz Night feat. Zoë Gilby @ The Keys, Yarm. 7:00pm. £30.00. (inc. meal). Tickets from Skiddle. Gilby w. Noel Dennis, Mark Williams & Andy Champion.
Thu 01: Bold Big Band @ The Cluny, Newcastle. 8:00pm. Cluny 2.
Thu 01: Paul Skerritt Duo @ Tomahawk Steakhouse, High St., Yarm. 8:00pm. Paul Skerritt & James Harrison residency.
Thu 01: Tees Hot Club @ Dorman’s Club, Middlesbrough. 9:00pm.

Fri 02: Swing Manouche @ Bishop Auckland Town Hall. 1:00pm. £7.00.
Fri 02: Classic Swing @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.
Fri 02: New Orleans Preservation Jazz Band @ Oxbridge Hotel, Stockton. 1:00pm. £5.00.
Fri 02: Rendezvous Jazz @ The Monkseaton Arms, Monkseaton. 1:00pm.
Fri 02: Durham University Big Band + Durham University Jazz Orchestra @ Kingsgate Bar, Durham Students' Union, Dunelm House, Durham. 7:00pm. £3.00. & £2.50. Fundraiser for Coppafeel.
Fri 02: Niffi Osiyemi Trio @ The Vault, Hexham. 7:30pm.
Fri 02: Alligator Gumbo @ Saltburn Community Hall. 7:30pm. Xmas party.
Fri 02: Struggle Buggy's Almost Xmas Party @ Prohibition Bar, Newcastle. 8:00pm. Free (donations). Blind Pig Blues Club.

Thursday, August 12, 2021

Ten unforgettable moments at 78rpm

Back in the day when recorded music was confined to single, mainly 10", 78rpm discs that played for about 3 minutes a side to suit the jukebox market. Solos had to be brief, precise and to the point. Rarely more than a chorus. No space for excursions à la Paul Gonsalves' Dim. Cresc. although JATP, Beethoven & co. got around this by issuing their jam sessions and symphonies over several sides.

Thinking back to those simpler times, I got to recalling some of those precious moments that have stayed with me over the years. Just a few bars that I've remembered long after the behemothic solos have since blurred and merged into a tangled mix of 200 bpm demi-semi-quavers.

So, reviving 'The Tens', in approximately chronological order, here are ten unforgettable moments,  of just a few bars, sometimes just a couple of notes and never more than a chorus that I still treasure. Not surprisingly, like old movies and former girl friends, not all of  my memories held up all these years later. Some that I expected to make the cut fell foul of the passage of time.

Lester Young's 1938 clarinet solo on Basie's Blue and Sentimental. A feature for Lester's fellow tenor player, Herschel Evans who plays the theme beautifully and there's some fine Basie piano but it's Lester's clarinet chorus at the back end that makes it for me.

Lionel Hampton's 1939 solo on When Lights Are Low. The band included Dizzy, Benny Carter, Hawk, Bean, Chu and Charlie Christian but it was a fragment of Hamp's solo - just a few, maybe 8 notes - that grabbed me. Sometimes less really is more!

Jack Jenney's 1940 solo on Artie Shaw's Stardust. Billy Butterfield's trumpet solo sets the pace which is a nice, leisurely, dancing in the dark type scenario. Artie adds a little moonlight but it is Jack Jenney's widely acclaimed solo that brings in the starry glitter.

Buddy DeFranco's 1944 solo on Tommy Dorsey's Opus No. 1. Just two lots of 8 bars but they are like a breath of fresh air amidst the hurly-burly of a typical swing band. Interestingly, on Becky Kilgore's recent livestream with Rossano Sportiello and Dan Barrett I got the impression she was humming the DeFranco solo whilst Barrett was recreating the underlying string theme from the record - maybe.

Allan Reuss's 1945 intro to Harry James' I'm Beginning to See the Light.  Despite a fine vocal by Kitty Kallen, a tenor solo by 'Corky' Corcoran and, naturally, the leader's trumpet it's guitarist Reuss' 4 bars at the beginning and his 4 bars at the end along with his underlying rhythm throughout that make it for me. One of the many great overlooked guitarists of the day.

Earl Bostic's 1945 solo on Rex Stewart's Shady Side of the Street. Mention Earl Bostic and most people think of Flamingo and the other R&B sides where his tone on alto sax is as gravel-edged as an Armstrong vocal or Bubber Miley growling on those early Ellington sides. However, here he could easily be mistaken for Johnny Hodges and it isn't surprising that John Coltrane named him as an early influence.

Charlie Parker's 1946 'Famous Alto Break' on  A Night in Tunisia. No surprise with this one unless you're hearing it for the first time. It's all quite, dare I say it?, pedestrian until that dynamic moment when Bird cuts loose. To me, this was the moment when bebop finally broke free from what had preceded and entered the brave new world that beckoned.

Art Pepper's 1947 solo on Stan Kenton's How High the Moon? A vocal feature for June Christy but, just as Buddy DeFranco's clarinet solo lightened Dorsey's Opus One, so does Pepper's 16 bar alto solo allow the moon to shine through a cloudy sky.

Bobby Hackett's 1947 solo on Armstrong's Ain't Misbehavin. When I first heard this 12" single by the All-Stars from the legendary concert at New York's Town Hall  I automatically assumed that it was Satchmo himself blowing the trumpet solo that was sandwiched in between Peanuts Hucko's clarinet chorus and Jack Teagarden's trombone blast but, no, it was Bobby Hackett - perhaps the most lyrical player since Bix.

Stan Getz's 1948 solo on Woody Herman's Four Brothers. Zoot Sims, Herbie Steward, Serge Chaloff all have great solos but Stan's is the one I remember most. Perhaps it's because when Man Tran vocalesed it they opened up Stan's chorus with 'dig my Long Island sound' which kinda stuck in my mind.

Wardell Gray's 1949 solo on Twisted. These days Twisted is forever associated with Annie Ross, many not realising that her classic version was based on another classic version by one of the all-time great bop tenor players. The reason it sticks in my mind is because it was the first time I'd ever heard the opening line of Swinging on a Star used as a quote - a mule is an animal with long funny ears etc. Lance.

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