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Bebop Spoken There

Charles Lloyd: "I'm raring to go out to play, because I know I'll find something to explain the inexplicable." (DownBeat August 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

14454 (and counting) posts since we started blogging 14 years ago. 732 of them this year alone and, so far, 30 this month (August 11).

From This Moment On ...

August

Sun 14: Vieux Carré Hot 4 @ Spanish City, Whitley Bay. 12 noon.
Sun 14: Tees Valley Jazzmen @ Hammer & Pincers, Preston le Skerne. 1:00pm.
Sun 14: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ West Park, South Shields. 2:00pm.
Sun 14: Foundry Jazz Ensemble @ The Exchange, North Shields. 3:00pm.
Sun 14: Anth Purdy @ Blues & Bourbon, Newcastle. 4:00pm. Free.
Sun 14: Castillo Nuevo @ Revoluçion de Cuba, Newcastle. 5:30-8:30pm.
Sun 14: Sunday Night Am Jam Special @ The Globe, Newcastle. 7:30pm. Note start time.

Mon 15: Jazz in the Afternoon @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.
Mon 15: Stu Collingwood Organ Trio @ Black Bull, Blaydon. 8:00pm. Blaydon Jazz Club.

Wed 17: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.
Wed 17: Darlington Big Band @ Darlington & Simpson Rolling Mills Club, Darlington. 7:00pm. Rehearsal session (open to the public).
Wed 17: 4B @ The Exchange, North Shields. 7:00pm.
Wed 17: Take it to the Bridge @ The Globe, Newcastle. 7:30pm.

Thu 18: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ The Holystone, North Tyneside. 1:00pm.
Thu 18: Gateshead Jazz Appreciation Society @ Gateshead Central Library. 3:00-5:00pm. £1.00. All welcome.
Thu 18: Castillo Nuevo @ Revoluçion de Cuba, Newcastle. 5:30-8:30pm.
Thu 18: Newcastle Jazz Festival @ Bridge Hotel, Newcastle. Strictly Smokin’ Big Band. 7:00pm. Free (four-day festival ticket £40.00.). www.newcastlejazzfestival.co.uk.
Thu 18: Tees Hot Club @ Dorman’s Club, Middlesbrough. 9:00pm.

Fri 19: Jo Harrop & Jamie McCredie @ Lit & Phil, Newcastle. 1:00pm. SOLD OUT!
Fri 19: Classic Swing @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.
Fri 19: New Orleans Preservation Jazz Band @ Oxbridge Hotel, Stockton. 1:00pm. £5.00.
Fri 19: Rendezvous Jazz @ The Monkseaton Arms, Monkseaton. 1:00pm.
Fri 19: Jo Harrop & Jamie McCredie @ St Cuthbert’s Centre, Crook. 7:30pm.
Fri 19: Newcastle Jazz Festival @ Black Swan, Newcastle. 7:30pm. Harry Keeble Duo + Northern Monkey Brass Band. £15.00. (four-day festival ticket £40.00.). www.newcastlejazzfestival.co.uk.
Fri 19: Mo Scott @ The Millstone, South Gosforth, Newcastle. 8:00pm. Scott w Gary Dunn, Neil Harland & Paul Smith.

Sat 20: Newcastle Jazz Festival @ Tyne Bank Brewery, Newcastle. All day event (from 1:30pm): Riviera Effect + Alter Ego + Graham Hardy Quartet + Jo Harrop & Jamie McCredie + Ivo Neame Quartet. £17.00. (four-day festival ticket £40.00.). www.newcastlejazzfestival.co.uk.
Sat 20: Anth Purdy @ Prohibition Bar, Newcastle. 8:00pm. Free (donations).

Wednesday, November 03, 2021

Book/CD review: Brian Morton - The Making of Chet Baker Sings

Chet Baker (trumpet, vocal); Russ Freeman (piano); Jimmy Bond, Carson Smith, Joe Mondragon (bass); Peter Littman, Lawrence Marable, Bob Neel, Shelly Manne (drums)

Back in the mid-fifties I recall a Melody Maker headline that read "Chet Baker to appear in London - But only to sing!" This was, at the time, akin to saying that Fred Astaire would be appearing but wouldn't be dancing.

This was, of course, due to the ongoing situation where foreign musicians weren't allowed to play for fear of them taking work away from British musicians. It didn't apply to singers as they would have local musicians accompanying them.

As time went by Chet's singing became more and more accepted although the late Sinclair Traill in the April 1959 issue of Jazz Journal reviewing Chet Baker Sings wrote: "It is the sad music of despair - a sound I can do without". A ludicrous statement that was typical of the jazz critics of that era.

Fortunately, the years and this album have proved the pundits wrong. Chet Baker Sings now stands alongside Sinatra's Wee Small Hours and the Ella Song Books as being among the all time vocal classics.

The fact that someone has found it worthy enough to write an 80 page hard-backed book about the album is proof, if proof were needed, of its importance. A Kind of Blue, Jazz at Massey Hall and A Love Supreme are among the few jazz albums given that degree of acceptance. Morton does it justice without going too deeply into the actual goings on in the studio. Instead he gives us the background to the session without the sensationalism that most of Baker's biographers do.

As regards the actual music, this is as cool as it gets and yet packed with underlying emotion. The voice rests comfortably between Sinatra's romanticism and Tormé's vocal agility over twenty GASbook classics - six more than on the 12" album and twelve more than on the original 10" album released in 1954.

Despite the title, the trumpet isn't absent. On The Thrill is Gone he blows a fine obligato behind the vocal whilst his intro to There Will Never be Another You wouldn't have sounded out of place at Condon's or Jimmy Ryan's giving substance to the suggestion that Chet was a natural evolution from Bix. Fine piano from Russ Freeman too.

Highly recommended for both the music, Brian Morton's descriptive writing and the black and white photos, many previously unseen, by various photographers including William Claxton - Lance

That Old Feeling; It's Always You; Like Someone in Love; My Ideal; I've Never Been in Love Before; My Buddy; But Not For Me; Time After Time; I Get Along Without You Very Well; My Funny Valentine; There Will Never be Another You; The Thrill is Gone; I Fall in Love Too Easily; Look For the Silver Lining; Daybreak;; Just Friends; I Remember You; Let's Get Lost; Long Ago and Far Away; You Don't Know What Love is.

Brian Morton: The Making of Chet Baker Sings. Jazz Images 2021.

1 comment :

Anonymous said...

Thanks for the review. It's probably common currency among your readers. But just in case not it's worth reiterating that Brian Morton is one of the world's best jazz writers. No one really gives a damn really about jazz writers which is abysmal of course but the reality so more should actually praise writers of his calibre given the pervasive whistling in the dark otherwise. Because what he writes belongs more in the realms of literature even if he only pens a small review, even a caption (as he sometimes writes for the Italian Cam Jazz label). Only Geoff Dyer (in the pages of But Beautiful) is in the same league in terms of style, intellectual rigour and substance.

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