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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...


16034 (and counting) posts since we started blogging 15 years ago. 1041 of them this year alone and, so far, 73 this month (Nov. 27).

From This Moment On ...


Wed 29: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.
Wed 29: Darlington Big Band @ Darlington & Simpson Rolling Mills Social Club, Darlington. 7:00pm. Rehearsal session (open to the public).
Wed 29: Take it to the Bridge @ The Globe, Newcastle. 7:30pm.

Thu 30: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ The Holystone, Whitley Road, North Tyneside. 1:00pm. Free.
Thu 30: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 7:30pm (7:00pm doors). Tickets: £25.00. inc. buffet. A Gatsby themed evening.
Thu 30: Jools Holland's R & B Orchestra @ Newcastle City Hall. 7:30pm.
Thu 30: Merlin Roxby @ Prohibition Bar, Newcastle. 8:00pm. Ragtime piano. A 'Jar on the Bar' gig.
Thu 30: Tees Hot Club @ Dorman's Club, Middlesbrough. Guest band night: Mark Toomey Quintet (Mark Toomey, sax; Paul Donnelly, guitar; Jeremy McMurray, keys; Peter Ayton, bass; Mark Robertson, drums). 9:00pm.

Fri 01: Classic Swing @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.
Fri 01: New Orleans Preservation Jazz Band @ Oxbridge Hotel, Stockton. 1:00pm. £5.00.
Fri 01: Rendezvous Jazz @ The Monkseaton Arms, Monkseaton. 1:00pm.
Fri 01: Paul Skerritt @ All Saints’ Church, Eastgate, Co. Durham. 7:00pm. Xmas Tree Fest.
Fri 01: Alligator Gumbo @ Saltburn Community Hall. 7:30pm. SOLD OUT!
Fri 01: Nu Sound Brass @ Billy Bootlegger’s, Newcastle. 8:00pm. Free.
Fri 01: Struggle Buggy w. Jim Murray @ Prohibition Bar, Newcastle. 8:00pm. Blind Pig Blues Club. Free. A ‘Jar on the Bar’ gig.

Sat 02: Paula Jackman's Jazz Masters @ St Augustine's Parish Centre, Darlington. 12:30pm. £10.00.
Sat 02: Play Jazz! workshop @ The Globe, Newcastle. 1:30pm. Tutor: Steve Glendinning. £25.00. Enrol at:
Sat 02: Abbie Finn Trio @ Claypath Deli, Durham. 7:00pm.
Sat 02: Tenement Jazz Band @ John Marley Centre, Newcastle. Swing Tyne Winter Social. £8.00. + bf. Advance purchase only, no admission at the door. BYOB. Lindy hop workshop from 11:00am. £39.00.
Sat 02: Zoë Gilby Quartet @ The Masham, Hartburn Village, Stockton. 7:00pm. Feat. Noel Dennis.
Sat 02: Classic Swing @ The Nuthatch, 9 - 11 Bedford St, Middlesbrough TS1 2LL. 7:00-9:00pm. Classic Swing in trio format.
Sat 02: Paul Skerritt w. Danny Miller Big Band @ Westovian Theatre, South Shields. 7:30pm.
Sat 02: Vermont Big Band @ Whitley Bay FC. 7:30pm. £10.00. (inc. hot buffet). Tickets available from WBFC’s Seahorse pub club house.
Sat 02: Milne-Glendinning Band @ Ponteland Social Club, Northumberland. 7:30pm. £18.00 (inc. stotties & soup supper). A fundraiser for Hexham Constituency Labour Party.
Sat 02: Durham Dynamics & Basement Jazz @ Kingsgate Bar & Café, Durham Students’ Union. 7:30pm. £5.00. (£4.50. concs.). ‘Fab & Festive’. A cappella & jazz. Abba, Mariah Carey & more.
Sat 02: Tom Remon & Laurence Harrison @ Prohibition Bar, Newcastle. 8:00pm. Free. A ‘Jar on the Bar’ gig.
Sat 02: Rendezvous Jazz @ Red Lion, Earsdon. 8:00pm. Xmas party night inc. buffet & special raffle. £3.00.
Sat 02: Groovetrain @ The Unionist Club, Laygate, South Shields. 9:00pm.

Sun 03: The Central Bar Quartet @ Central Bar, Gateshead. 2:00pm. £10.00. The Central Bar Quartet plays Lou Donaldson’s Gravy Train. Featuring Jamie Toms.
Sun 03: Paul Skerritt @ Smith’s Arms, Carlton, Stockton-on-Tees. 7:00pm.
Sun 03: Johnny Hunter Quartet @ The Globe, Newcastle. 8:00pm.
Sun 03: Jam session @ The Schooner, Gateshead. 8:00pm. Free.

Mon 04: Harmony Brass @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.
Mon 04: Northern Monkey Brass Band @ People’s Kitchen, Bath Lane, Newcastle. From 5:30pm. On-street gig supporting the work of the People’s Kitchen charity. Wrap up warm! Donate!
Mon 04: Michael Young Trio w Lindsay Hannon @ The Engine Room, Sunderland. 7:00pm. Free.
Mon 04: James Birkett Trio @ The Black Bull, Blaydon. 8:00pm. £8.00.
Mon 04: Durham University Jazz Orchestra + Durham University Big Band @ Durham Castle DH1 3RW. 8:30pm. £6.00.; £5.00. concs; £4.00. DSM. ‘Jazzy Christmas’.

Tue 05: Customs House Big Band @ All Saints Church, Cleadon. 7:00pm. Concert in the church hall. BYOB.
Tue 05: Jam session @ The Black Swan, Newcastle. 7:30pm. Free. House trio: Michael Young, Paul Grainger, Sid White. The best free show in town!

Monday, January 31, 2022

Grant Russell Quartet @ the Railway, Stockport - Jan. 30

Grant Russell (bass); Kyran Matthews (tenor sax); Paul Kilvington (keys); Luke Flowers (drums).

A graduate of the Royal Northern College of Music Manchester, 35 year old Grant Russell is a very versatile bass player, well known in the north west and beyond for his formidable technique.    

It’s been a while since Grant has been to the Railway. I think it may have been during the pre-covid days as a sideman but tonight he was fronting his own quartet and he could not have picked  a better group of musicians with whom to share the bandstand.

It was yet another rainy night in Stockport but in spite of this, the main room was almost full when I arrived and I had to sit by the bar at the back.

After a quick sound check, the concert started with Monk’s Bemsha Swing which featured some high-octane playing from Kyran Matthews who, without the use of a mic, produced a huge sound on his Selmer Mk 6 that was most impressive. He seemed inspired by the brilliant drumming of Luke Flowers and also by Paul Kilvington whose high energy keyboard skills are well suited to this group.

Things cooled down a bit for the next number, Angel Eyes,   but then warmed up with Kyran delving into some high register licks before reverting back to the theme.

Unlike the Shearing Sound who played over twenty tunes during their recent gig, the Grant Russell Quartet only played a total of eight tunes. This also may be a record for the least number of tunes played at this location. The energy level of this group remained high throughout the evening and even though they sometimes got into what may be termed avant-guard mode, most people liked what they were doing, myself included.

In the second set I was pleased to hear Paul Kilvington being featured on Smile written by comedian Charlie Chaplin. This made me wish I still had the LP Matador on which Jackie McLean did a great version of the Chaplin tune. Also, McLean played it on one of the Steeplechase recordings that he made with Dexter Gordon.

One thing I’ve noticed which is most likely age-related is I sometimes hear a band play a tune and it is one I ought to know the name of but my mind just goes blank. This happened when the band played a Tadd Dameron bop tune at a fast tempo. I had to ask Luke Flowers after the gig what the tune was called and he said Ladybird.   I was astounded as I must have played that number many times!    

Anyway, congrats to Grant for providing a really exciting evening of modern music and I hope you can do it all again sometime.

Next Railway jazz is Feb 1 - Steve Oakes Band featuring Ray Butcher - Mike Farmer 

Bemsha Swing; Angel Eyes; Hello Little Sunflower; How High the Moon; Pure Imagination; Ladybird; Smile; Bolivia.


Lance said...

Hey Mike I know the feeling! With standards it's easy because you can usually remember the words whilst they're playing the head but no matter how familiar I am with bop tunes, although I can often recognise the sequence, I always struggle to connect the titles the 'composers' have given to them!

Russell said...

Sounds like a tasty quartet. Kyran Matthews will, likely as not, be at the Great North Big Band Jazz Festival in Chester le Street on Saturday 5 March with the three times reigning champs in the senior big band competition, the Managers Big Band from Bolton. And what a band it is!

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