Total Pageviews

Bebop Spoken There

Tineke Postma: “ I had a huge crush on him [Sting] when I was a teenager ". Jazzwise, June 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.


16497 (and counting) posts since we started blogging 16 years ago. 377 of them this year alone and, so far, 89 this month (May 30).

From This Moment On ...


Thu 30: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ The Holystone, Whitley Road, North Tyneside. 1:00pm. Free.
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. 8:30pm. Guests Josh Bentham (sax); Neil Brodie (trumpet); Garry Hadfield (keys); Adrian Beadnell (bass);

Fri 31: Classic Swing @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm. Free.
Fri 31: Rendezvous Jazz @ The Monkseaton Arms. 1:00pm. Free.
Fri 31: New Orleans Preservation Jazz Band @ The Oxbridge Hotel, Stockton. 1:00pm. £5.00.
Fri 31: Castillo Nuevo Trio @ Revoluçion de Cuba, Newcastle. 5:30pm. Free.
Fri 31: Borealis @ The Witham, Barnard Castle. 7:30pm. CANCELLED!
Fri 31: Redwell @ Prohibition Bar, Newcastle. 8:00pm. A ‘Jar on the Bar’ gig.


Sat 01: Enrico Tomasso’s Swing Company @ St Augustine's Parish Centre, Darlington. 12:30pm. Darlington New Orleans Jazz Club.
Sat 01: Play More Jazz! workshop @ The Globe, Newcastle. 1:30pm. Tutor: Steve Glendinning.
Sat 01: Hop, Skiffle & Jump: The Story of Skiffle @ 1719, Hendon, Sunderland. 6:00-9:00pm.
Sat 01: Edison Herbert Trio @ The Vault, Darlington. 7:00pm. Free.
Sat 01: Lindsay Hannon’s Tom Waits for No Man @ Dry Water Arts, Amble. 7:00pm. £15.00.
Sat 01: John Garner & John Pope @ Victoria Tunnel, Ouseburn, Newcastle. 7:00pm.
Sat 01: Milne-Glendinning Band @ Prohibition Bar, Newcastle. 8:00pm. A ‘Jar on the Bar’ gig.

Sun 02: Musicians Unlimited @ West Hartlepool RFC, Hartlepool. 12 noon. Two sets (12 noon-1:00pm & 2:00-3:00pm). ‘Sunday Big Band Blast meets WHRFC’s Classic Car Show’.
Sun 02: Smokin’ Spitfires @ The Cluny, Newcastle. 12:45pm. £7.50.
Sun 02: Mark Williams Trio @ Central Bar, Gateshead. 2:00pm. £10.00.
Sun 02: Sax Choir @ The Globe, Newcastle. 2:00pm.
Sun 02: New Century Ragtime Orchestra @ Prohibition Bar, Newcastle. 2:30pm. Free. A 'Jar on the Bar' gig. A 'pint sized' NCRO gig/rehearsal session feat. Dave Hignett, Jim McBriarty, Gavin Lee, Keith Stephen, Phil Rutherford with special guest drummer Nick Ward.
Sun 02: 4B @ The Ticket Office, Whitley Bay. 3:00pm. Free.
Sun 02: Anth Purdy @ The Quakerhouse, Darlington. 6:30pm. Free. ‘Swing Jazz Guitar’.
Sun 02: MSK @ The Globe, Newcastle. 8:00pm.

Mon 03: John Garner & John Pope @ Yamaha Music School, Blyth. 1:00pm. £8.00.
Mon 03: Harmony Brass @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm. Free.

Tue 04: Jam session @ The Black Swan, Newcastle. 7:30pm. Free. House trio: Ben Phillips, Paul Grainger, Abbie Finn.

Wed 05: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm. Free.
Wed 05: Darlington Big Band @ Darlington & Simpson Rolling Mills Social Club, Darlington. 7:00pm. Free. Rehearsal session (open to the public).
Wed 05: Take it to the Bridge @ The Globe, Newcastle. 7:30pm. Free.

Tuesday, October 04, 2022

Newcastle Festival of Jazz and Improvised Music: Orphy Robinson in conversation + Beck Hunters with Laura Cole & John Pope + Daniel Levin + Black Top with Mariam Rezaei @ The Lit & Phil - Oct. 1

(© Ken Drew)
Beck Hunters: Mick Beck (tenor sax, bassoon, whistles); Laura Cole (piano); Anton Hunter (guitar); John Pope (bass); Johnny Hunter (drums)

Beck Hunters, an established trio, with the addition of Laura Cole and John Pope got proceedings underway for Saturday Night at the Lit and Phil. 

Rarely is a bassoon  seen in a jazz context but Mick Beck employed this orchestral woodwind behemoth to marvellous effect yet that was only one of the many instruments employed by the doyen of the Sheffield improvised jazz scene. An ordinary whistle and a swanee whistle were also employed and of course the more conventional tenor saxophone. 

You would not have believed that this was the first time this band had played together. The music was absolutely exceptional as it flowed seamlessly throughout. Beck is a master saxophonist, the fabulous Hunter boys were fabulous as usual, festival favourite John Pope on double bass (by my calculations the  Pontiff will have participated on 5 of the 8 festival's days) was his usual ebullient self. Laura Cole on the piano was sensational. There was so much fantastic playing it was impossible who to select who to focus on as wonderful sounds seemed to be emanating from every  corner of the stage. A real great performance -  my favourite of the festival.

Daniel Levin (cello)

In keeping with the theme of instruments rarely seen in a jazz context the cello was featured in the solo spot of the night. Brooklyn based Daniel Levin is a one man activity centre. 

Every part of the cello is incorporated into his routine. Even the bow is used in a number of non-standard ways including swishing it through the air (as I was  seated literally in front of Levin  this was quite alarming as any miscalculation would have seen me floored) and using it as a stick to beat things with. Levin mixes classical passages with free improvisation and the percussive effects he manages to carve out from every part of the instrument  including the spike on the bottom of the cello was captivating.

The cello is more often than not associated with gentle and melancholy music. In the hands of Daniel Levin it is a brute of an instrument able to conjure up an exciting and exhilarating  musical and visual extravaganza.

Black Top: Orphy Robinson (xylosynth & electronics); Pat Thomas (piano & electronics); Mariam Rezaei (turntables).

(© Ken Drew)
The evening culminated with yet another unusual vehicle rarely, if ever, seen at a jazz gig. This time it was the turntables of Mariam Razaei. Black Top is the brainchild of Orphy Robinson and Pat Thomas and since its inception they have invited many guests to participate. Both Thomas and Robinson had their regular instruments but they also had electronic devices so to be honest at times it was hard to work out who was doing what with what but judging by the amount of activity on stage it appeared that Razaei was doing most of the hard yards as she frantically worked the dials and knobs of her music station.  

The band themselves describe their output as "archaic Nubian dubstep". I'm not sure what that means but what was witnessed was a high tech, high energy, high volume  celebration of improvised electronic composition.


(© Ken Drew)
At the start of the evening there was an  enjoyable conversation between Orphy Robinson and Corey Mwamba. I remember seeing Orphy Robinson in the Jazz Warriors in the 1980s' so it was a very enjoyable trip down memory lane for me. Robinson reminisced about his journey as a multi instrumentalist, composer and educator going as far back as his early school days in Hackney. As a youngster he used to take teaspoons up to his room at night to use them to practice with hoping he wouldn’t disturb the rest of the house. Of course they heard the disturbance and also noticed there was nothing to stir their tea with. Robinson has certainly had a fulfilling and illustrious  career to date and judging from his number of appearances in this festival fortunately shows no signs of slowing down. Steve H 

No comments :

Blog Archive