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Bebop Spoken There

Raymond Chandler: “ I was walking the floor and listening to Khatchaturian working in a tractor factory. He called it a violin concerto. I called it a loose fan belt and the hell with it ". The Long Goodbye, Penguin 1959.

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.


16350 (and counting) posts since we started blogging 16 years ago. 230 of them this year alone and, so far, 27 this month (April 11).

From This Moment On ...


Fri 19: Cia Tomasso @ The Lit & Phil, Newcastle. 1:00pm. ‘Cia Tomasso sings Billie Holiday’. SOLD OUT!
Fri 19: Classic Swing @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm. Free.
Fri 19: Rendezvous Jazz @ The Monkseaton Arms. 1:00pm. Free.
Fri 19: New Orleans Preservation Jazz Band @ The Oxbridge Hotel, Stockton. 1:00pm. £5.00.
Fri 19: Tweed River Jazz Band @ The Radio Rooms, Berwick. 7:00pm (doors). £5.00.
Fri 19: Lindsay Hannon: Tom Waits for No Man @ Seventeen Nineteen, Hendon, Sunderland. 7:30pm.
Fri 19: Levitation Orchestra + Nauta @ Cluny 2, Newcastle. 7:30pm (doors). £11.00.
Fri 19: Strictly Smokin’ Big Band @ The Witham, Barnard Castle. 8:00pm. ‘Ella & Ellington’.

Sat 20: Record Store Day…at a store near you!
Sat 20: Bright Street Band @ Washington Arts Centre. 6:30pm. Swing dance taster session (6:30pm) followed by Bright Street Big Band (7:30pm). £12.00.
Sat 20: Michael Woods @ Victoria Tunnel, Ouseburn, Newcastle. 7:00pm. Acoustic blues.
Sat 20: Rendezvous Jazz @ St Andrew’s Church, Monkseaton. 7:30pm. £10.00. (inc. a drink on arrival).

Sun 21: Jamie Toms Quartet @ Queen’s Hall, Hexham. 3:00pm.
Sun 21: 4B @ The Ticket Office, Whitley Bay Metro Station. 3:00pm. Free.
Sun 21: Lindsay Hannon: Tom Waits for No Man @ Holy Grale, Durham. 5:00pm.
Sun 21: The Jazz Defenders @ Cluny 2. Doors 6:00pm. £15.00.
Sun 21: Edgar Rubenis @ Prohibition Bar, Newcastle. 7:00pm. Free. A ‘Jar on the Bar’ gig. Blues & ragtime guitar.
Sun 21: Tweed River Jazz Band @ Barrels Ale House, Berwick. 7:00pm. Free.
Sun 21: Art Themen with the Dean Stockdale Trio @ The Globe, Newcastle. 8:00pm. £10.00. +bf. JNE. SOLD OUT!

Mon 22: Harmony Brass @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm. Free.

Tue 23: Vieux Carre Hot 4 @ Victoria & Albert Inn, Seaton Delaval. 12:30-3:30pm. £12.00. ‘St George’s Day Afternoon Tea’. Gig with ‘Lashings of Victoria Sponge Cake, along with sandwiches & scones’.
Tue 23: Jalen Ngonda @ Newcastle University Students’ Union. POSTPONED!

Wed 24: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm. Free.
Wed 24: Darlington Big Band @ Darlington & Simpson Rolling Mills Social Club, Darlington. 7:00pm. Free. Rehearsal session (open to the public).
Wed 24: Sinatra: Raw @ Darlington Hippodrome. 7:30pm. Richard Shelton.
Wed 24: Take it to the Bridge @ The Globe, Newcastle. 7:30pm. Free.
Wed 24: Death Trap @ Theatre Royal, Newcastle. 7:30pm. Rambert Dance Co. Two pieces inc. Goat (inspired by the music of Nina Simone) with on-stage musicians.

Thu 25: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ The Holystone, Whitley Road, North Tyneside. 1:00pm. Free.
Thu 25: Jim Jams @ King’s Hall, Newcastle University. 1:15pm. Jim Jams’ funk collective.
Thu 25: Gateshead Jazz Appreciation Society @ Gateshead Central Library, Gateshead. 2:30pm.
Thu 25: Death Trap @ Theatre Royal, Newcastle. 7:30pm. Rambert Dance Co. Two pieces inc. Goat (inspired by the music of Nina Simone) with on-stage musicians.
Thu 25: Jeremy McMurray & the Pocket Jazz Orchestra @ Arc, Stockton. 8:00pm.
Thu 25: Kate O’Neill, Alan Law & Paul Grainger @ Prohibition Bar, Newcastle. 8:00pm. Free. A ‘Jar on the Bar’ gig.
Thu 25: Tees Hot Club @ Dorman’s Club, Middlesbrough. 8:30pm. Guests: Richie Emmerson (tenor sax); Neil Brodie (trumpet); Adrian Beadnell (bass); Garry Hadfield (keys).

Wednesday, August 10, 2022

Jazz Workshop @ the Globe - Sometime Ago (August 6/7)

This enjoyable event took place last weekend, August 6 and 7, with about a dozen students working in two groups with our very friendly tutors - Paul Edis and James Brady (of Leeds.)

Grateful thanks to all those at the Globe who were involved in the organising of this event.

I don't need to outline the proceedings blow by blow or rather chord by chord, as most readers have probably been part of such events more times than they can shake a sax at. Enough to say that the music played included:

Songs: Perdido (Juan Tizol); Sometime Ago (Serge Milhanovic)

Instrumentals: Ad Infinitum (Carla Bley); Struttin' With Some Barbecue (Lil Hardin Armstrong & Don Raye); Jelly Rolls (Charles Mingus); Westerly (Nikki Iles).

However, I have another purpose which is to rave about the wonderful song Sometime Ago, which is a masterpiece, at least to my ears, and it was worth doing the weekend for just this one song. Lyrics and music are a perfect fit, especially as sung by American singer Irene Kral (1932-1978).

Life began when you came sometime ago

There was love in the game sometime ago

So unconventional you and me

And so essentially young and free


We were both very smart until the end

Little girl with no heart I would pretend

Now I'm discovering as I'm recovering

Love wasn't really just a game

But we're the only ones to blame

We find out about the love affair indirectly without details of where they met etcetera, which is clever songwriting as the listener can make up the details for themselves, and thus feels more involved in the story. The listener may perhaps think about a similar experience that they have had.

We don't actually know how long ago all this happened, was it a month, a year, or when? The last line of the song can be sung differently by various singers. Obviously it's sad which could be shown by singing quietly with pauses between words, but a clever singer could probably bring off an angry interpretation to that line.

The tune is a perfect fit for the words. Repetition of 'sometime ago' works well and 'unconventional' trips lightly off the tongue after the low note on 'so'. 'Young and Free' actually sounds light and free because of the higher note on the 'and'. I could elaborate more but I'm sure that readers of this blog can do that just as well for themselves. But I must mention how enjoyable it was to sing the line 'Now I'm discovering as I'm recovering' which, again, slips nicely off the tongue because 'recovering' has higher notes than the rest of the line, so sounds like a recovery.

Irene Kral sings a coda to the words above, which we didn't include in our version:

We were both very smart sometime ago

Little girl lost her heart sometime ago

Which suggests that she hadn't really recovered after all. And as for the chords …..

I'll leave that to the instrumentalists! Ann Alex


Chris Kilsby said...

Sometime Ago is indeed a sweet tune. I heard it played at the NYJC Summer School concert last year - sans vocalist sadly. The recording is at Paul Edis was in the audience as one of the tutors - I wonder if that was where he spotted the potential for the tune? Though, then again, I bet it was already in his encyclopaedic pad!

Ann Alex said...

Thanks for the feedback Chris. I felt very privileged to get the chance to sing the song in the final session of the course on Sunday. The tune itself without the vocals would still sound good.

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