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Bebop Spoken There

Charles McPherson: “Jazz is best heard in intimate places”. (DownBeat, July, 2024).

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...

Josh Weir: I love the writing on bebop spoken here... I think the work you are doing is amazing.


16573 (and counting) posts since we started blogging 16 years ago. 466 of them this year alone and, so far, 12 this month (July 7).

From This Moment On ...


Fri 12: The Vieux Carré Hot 4 @ The White Swan, Main Road, Ovingham NE42 6AG. 12:30pm. Free.
Fri 12: John Settle @ The Old Library, Auckland Castle, Bishop Auckland. 1:00pm. £8.00. Settle (vibes) w. Dean Stockdale, Mick Shoulder & Tim Johnston.
Fri 12: Classic Swing @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm. Free.
Fri 12: Rendezvous Jazz @ The Monkseaton Arms. 1:00pm. Free.
Fri 12: New Orleans Preservation Jazz Band @ The Oxbridge Hotel, Stockton. 1:00pm. £5.00.

Sat 13: Jazz Stage @ Mouth of the Tyne Festival. Free. Vieux Carré Jazzmen (12 noon); Trilogy of Four (1:35pm); Classic Swing (3:10pm); Archipelago (4:40pm).
Sat 13: East Coast Swing Band @ Tynemouth Metro Station. 1:00pm. Free. A Mouth of the Tyne Festival event.
Sat 13: Tyne Valley Big Band @ Prudhoe Riverside Park. 12:55-1:40pm. Free.
Sat 13: Michael Woods @ Cycle Hub, Ouseburn, Newcastle NE6 1BU. 1:30-2:30pm & 3:00-4:00pm. Country blues. An Ouseburn Festival event.
Sat 13: Vieux Carré Hot 4 @ The Beehive, Hartley Lane, Whitley Bay NE25 0SZ. 5:30pm. Free. Gig in the Secret Garden.
Sat 13: Anth Purdy @ Prohibition Bar, Newcastle. 8:00pm. Free. ‘Swing Jazz Guitar’. A ‘Jar on the Bar’ gig.

Sun 14: OUTRI + Slowlight Quartet @ The Bandstand, The Sele, Hexham. 12 noon-2:00pm. Free. OUTRI is Ian ‘Dodge’ Paterson’s new solo bass project. ‘The Bandstand Sessions’.
Sun 14: Jazz Stage @ Mouth of the Tyne Festival. Free. Rendezvous Jazz (12 noon); Delta Prophets Trio (1:35pm); Abbie Finn Trio (3:10pm); River City Band (4:40pm).
Sun 14: MSK @ Tynemouth Metro Station. 1:00pm. Free. A Mouth of the Tyne Festival event.
Sun 14: Paul Skerritt @ Hibou Blanc, Newcastle. 2:00pm.
Sun 14: Am Jam @ The Globe, Newcastle. 2:00pm. Free.
Sun 14: Jamil Sheriff’s Five Gold Rings @ Queen’s Hall, Hexham. 3:00pm.
Sun 14: 4B @ The Ticket Office, Whitley Bay. 3:00pm. Free. Sun 14: Lounge Lizards + King Bees @ The Tyne Bar, Newcastle. 3:00pm. Free. The Tyne Bar’s 30th anniversary, top class blues double bill.
Sun 14: Richard Herdman @ Prohibition Bar, Newcastle. 8:00pm. Free. A ‘Jar on the Bar’ gig.

Mon 15: Harmony Brass @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm. Free.
Mon 15: Nathan Lawson Trio @ The Black Bull, Blaydon. 8:00pm. £8.00. Blaydon Jazz Club.

Tue 16: Vieux Carré Hot 4 @ Victoria & Albert Inn, Seaton Terrace, Seaton Delaval NE25 0AT. 12:30pm. £15.00 (tel: 0191 237 3697). Summer BBQ in the Beer Graden.
Tue 16: Jam session @ The Black Swan, Newcastle. 7:30pm. Free. House trio: Alan Law, Paul Grainger & Abbie Finn.

Wed 17: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm. Free.
Wed 17: Darlington Big Band @ Darlington & Simpson Rolling Mills Social Club, Darlington. 7:00pm. Free. Rehearsal session (open to the public).
Wed 17: Take it to the Bridge @ The Globe, Newcastle. 7:30pm. Free.
Wed 17: John Pope & John Garner + Nisha Ramayya @ Cluny 2, Newcastle. 7:30pm (doors). £15.00. (£12.00. adv.). A Gem Arts Masala Festival event.

Thu 18 Gateshead Jazz Appreciation Society @ Brunswick Methodist Church, Newcastle NE1 7BJ. 2:30pm. £4.00.
Thu 18: Theo Croker @ The Glasshouse, Gateshead. 8:00pm.
Thu 18: Brad Linde’s Continentals @ The Globe, Newcastle. 8:00pm.
Thu 18: Eva Fox & the Jazz Guys @ Prohibition Bar, Newcastle. 8:00pm. A ‘Jar on the Bar’ gig.
Thu 18: Ray Stubbs R&B All Stars @ The Mill Tavern, Hebburn. 8:00pm. Rhythm & blues.
Thu 18: Tees Hot Club @ Dorman’s Club, Middlesbrough. 8:30pm.

Saturday, April 09, 2022

Album review: The Gil Evans Orchestra Live at Fabrik – Hamburg 1986

Lew Soloff, Shunzo Ono, Miles Evans (trumpets); John Clark (French horn); Dave Taylor (trombone); David Bargeron (trombone/ tuba); Chris Hunter, Bill Evans, Howard Johnson (reeds); Gil Evans (leader/ elec. piano); Pete Levin (synth); Hiram Bullock (guitar); Mark Egan (bass guitar); Victor Lewis (drums); Marilyn Mazur (perc.); Delmar Brown (vocals & synth).

This is a previously unreleased 2 CD (or 3 LP) “live” recording of the Gil Evans Orchestra from October 26, 1986 held at ‘The Fabrik’ venue as part of the eleventh Hamburg Jazz Festival. It showcases Evans’ talent as a bandleader/arranger extraordinaire (and electric piano player) in the third and final phase of his career as a star in the jazz world. We’re lucky that a German broadcaster brought its microphones to record this event at a great location where the ambiance was good and where guest players like Victor Lewis and Marilyn Mazur had been added to an already formidable line-up.

Gil’s Orchestra was of course, like no other – unconventional, challenging to play in and to listen to, unpredictable, extraordinary and unique, lacking discipline and yet disciplined, with just a look or a pointed finger from the maestro to direct operations. The ensemble consisted of people who didn’t ordinarily play together (but who wanted to play for Gil). Musical tension was created by players in different styles and by the juxtaposition of various musical differences. Gil loved “the teetering on the edge” feeling that was the band’s ‘modus operandi’.

The music is as different as is possible to be from the superbly crafted arrangements prepared for the Claude Thornhill Orchestra or ‘The Birth of the Cool’ band or the Davis/Evans collaborations (Miles Ahead, Porgy and Bess, Sketches Of Spain) where Gil would sometimes agonise for days about the placing of a note in the score. Here, we have the free-flowing, Jimi Hendrix-influenced, collective improvisations, huge sonic performances dominated by synths and electronic instruments, some neat section play, and ‘free’ solos with the building and  release of tension throughout. Gil was fascinated by unusual sounds and many are included here – Bullock’s plangent guitar sound adds to his lustrous choice of chords, Levin’s synthesiser can provide backdrops which would normally need at least twelve conventional instruments. Soloff’s lead trumpet – Gillespie influenced but well into free and rock styles.

Many of the band’s usual repertoire are included here – Tony William’s There Comes a Time morphs into Zawinul’s Birdland. Hendrix’s Stone Free, Up from the Skies, Little Wing, and Voodoo Chile. Levin’s Subway, Delmar Brown’s extraordinary feature Sometimes and Gil’s own Orgone (previously known as Gone or Gone, Gone, Gone). Tracks range from 8 mins to 23 mins in length.

Some critics castigated Gil saying these extended pieces were self-indulgent, the solos were too long, the intros interminable. They missed the point of this spectacular, spontaneous, unpredictable, dumbfounding group where wild tumults of sound contrasted with “washes of music” to assail the listener’s ear. The very essence of jazz “The Sound of Surprise”. Dave Brownlow

The Gil Evans Orchestra Live At Fabrik NDR Kulture D77101

Lew S

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