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Bebop Spoken There

Veronica Swift: "I don't want to call myself a jazz singer anymore. I'm a singer and a storyteller.'" - (JazzTimes, December 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

13823 (and counting) posts since we started blogging 13 years ago. 42 of them this year alone and, so far, 42 this month (Jan. 12).

From This Moment On ...

January 2022

Sat 15: Elsadie & the Bobcats @ Prohibition Bar, Newcastle. 8:00pm..

Sun 16 Vieux Carré Hot 4 @ Spanish City, Whitley Bay. 12 noon.
Sun 16: Musicians Unlimited @ South Durham Social Club, Hartlepool. 1:00pm.
Sun 16: Foundry Jazz Ensemble @ The Exchange, North Shields. 3:00pm.
Sun 16: Garner-Pope Duo @ The Globe, Newcastle. 8:00pm. £10.00 adv., £12.00. door.

Mon 17: Jazz in the Afternoon @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.

Wed 19: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.
Wed 19: Classic Swing @ Venue, Cramlington NE23 6UT. 1:00pm.
Wed 19: Darlington Big Band @ Darlington & Simpson Rolling Mills Club, Darlington. 7:00pm. Rehearsal session (open to the public).
Wed 19: Four @ The Exchange, North Shields. 7:00pm.
Wed 19: Take it to the Bridge @ The Globe, Newcastle. 7:30pm.

Thu 20: Maine Street Jazzmen @ Sunniside Social Club, Gateshead. 8:30pm.
Thu 20: Tees Hot Club @ Dorman's Club, Middlesbrough. 9:00pm.

Fri 21: Emma Fisk & James Birkett @ The Lit & Phil, Newcastle. 1:00pm. POSTPONED!
Fri 21: Classic Swing @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.
Fri 21: New Orleans Preservation Jazz Band @ Oxbridge Hotel, Stockton. 1:00pm.
Fri 21: Rendezvous Jazz @ The Monkseaton Arms, Monkseaton. 1:00pm.
Fri 21: John Law @ Durham Cathedral. 7:30pm. £20.00. POSTPONED!
Fri 21: Dean Stockdale Quartet @ Traveller’s Rest, Darlington. 8:00pm. £8.00. Opus 4 Jazz Club.
Fri 21: Jude Murphy & Dan Stanley @ Prohibition Bar, Newcastle. 8:00pm.

Sat 22: East Coast Swing Band @ East Bedlington Community Centre. 7:30pm. £5.00.
Sat 22: MGB @ Prohibition Bar, Newcastle. 8:00pm. The Milne-Glendinning Band.

Thursday, September 30, 2021

Scarborough Jazz Festival: Saturday Evening - Sept. 25

Okay it wasn’t Alphonse Mouzon or Dizzy again, but it was a choice that had to be made. Some local – north east – loyalty or a Nikki Iles Orchestra threatening some ‘serious’ guests. We weren’t having fish and chips (again) on my sixtieth birthday and we tend to eat late but, in the end, it came down to we’ve seen Zoë Gilby many times and will hopefully see her many more times.

The threats were real: Gareth Lockrane on flute and fluty things, guitarist Mike Walker, I hadn’t seen since a stunning performance at Southport, saxophonist Julian Siegel since the Partisans at Pizza Express, and many more.

Like much of the festival, it was postponed from last year and she spotted the irony that it was to be called the ‘face to face’ tour.

It began with a slow intro that reminded me of Gil Evans’ intro to So What on the famous television version. A piece called Wild Oak by another fine lady pianist, the late great Geri Allen. Although we would miss Zoë Gilby, Iles played a different north east connection; a piece about Red Ellen [Wilkinson], a labour party MP and minister who played a major role in the Jarrow March in 1936.

Hush was a piece inspired by Rufus Reid that she wrote for a trio and then adapted for a big band. Caged Bird was inspired by the lockdown and was a commission by the International Society in America. High Lands was arranged by Stan Sulzmann and featured her and Lockrane on some type of whistle.

I always think a flute, or better still flutes – and she had saxophonists switching to flute – add another dimension to a big band, giving an authentic American feel, perhaps inspired by countless cop show theme tunes, and none the worse for that.   

By the time we returned, it felt like I must have the largest corn or sore in the world on the little toe of my left foot, but - worryingly - there wasn’t a mark at all, raising alarms that it might be broken.  

When Alan Barnes introduced Jean Toussaint he observed that most musicians play the music but a small number of bands drive the music forward and one such band was Art Blakey’s Jazz Messengers. Over the years they featured many of the great names in jazz, including Donald Byrd, Wayne Shorter, Lee Morgan, Freddie Hubbard, Benny Golson, Wynton and Branford Marsalis, Terence Blanchard, Kenny Garrett and Jean Toussaint. Despite Toussaint now being resident in the UK, this was nevertheless a seriously big deal.

Shorter’s Palladium started things off as a quartet of sax, piano, bass and drums, a track off Weather Report’s Heavy Weather album I’ve been unable to find in his solo career. Kenny Dorham’s Wind Mill, an artist associated with the pre-history of the Messengers, and they were joined by a trumpeter who’d played in the Koller band the night before and I believe was Byron Wallen, though I’m not certain.

After two days of jazz, and on our seventh band, this really was really real jazz, really. Trombonist Dennis Rollins had joined them to complete the all-star sextet, alongside Andy McCormack on piano, Orlando Fleming on bass and Ben Brown on drums - even  Major Changes, Doc and Amabo all came from his latest CD Brother Raymond, the latter a tribute to Obama (spelt backwards) which drew applause for the former American president, and a high-spot of the live set.

Even my left foot couldn’t dampen my spirits and it seems being sixty isn’t so bad after all.   Steve T

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