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Bebop Spoken There

Wendell Brunious: "Because the blues is not 1,4 and 5 or 1,4,5,2,1. You could wake up with a flat tyre or a headache this morning, that's the blues, man" - (DownBeat, Oct. 2023).

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!"


15878 (and counting) posts since we started blogging 15 years ago. 885 of them this year alone and, so far, 83 this month (Sept. 30).

From This Moment On ...


Mon 02: Harmony Brass @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.
Mon 02: FILM: Wattstax; 50th Anniversary @ Forum Cinema, Hexham. 8:00pm.

Tue 03: Paul Skerritt @ The Rabbit Hole, Hallgarth St., Durham DH1 3AT. 7:00pm. Paul Skerritt's (solo) weekly residency.
Tue 03: Jam session @ The Black Swan, Newcastle. 7:30pm. House trio: Michael Young (piano); Paul Grainger (double bass); Sid White (drums). CANCELLED!

Wed 04: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.
Wed 04: Darlington Big Band @ Darlington & Simpson Rolling Mills Social Club, Darlington. 7:00pm. Rehearsal session (open to the public).
Wed 04: Paul Skerritt @ Vespa Italian Bar & Steakhouse, Primrose Hill, Jarrow. From 7:00pm. To book a table - 0191 483 3355.
Wed 04: Take it to the Bridge @ The Globe, Newcastle. 7:30pm.

Thu 05: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ The Holystone, Whitley Road, North Tyneside. 1:00pm. Free.
Thu 05: Sound the Trumpets @ King's Hall, Newcastle University. 1:15pm. Free.
Thu 05: Hot Club du Nord @ The Lubetkin Theatre, Peterlee. 7:00pm. £10.00. POSTPONED!
Thu 05: Thursday Night Prayer Meeting @ The Globe, Newcastle. 7:30pm.
Thu 05: Tommy Bentz Trio + Mark Croft Duo + George Shovlin & George Lamb @ The Harbour View, Sunderland. 8:00pm. Free. Harbour View Speakeasy's USA blues double bill + Shovlin & Lamb!
Thu 05: Merlin Roxby @ Prohibition Bar, Newcastle. 8:00pm. Ragtime piano. A 'Jar on the Bar' gig.
Thu 05: Tees Hot Club @ Dorman's Club, Middlesbrough. 9:00pm.

Fri 06: Alcyona Mick @ Lit & Phil, Newcastle. 1:00pm. A Newcastle Festival of Jazz & Improvised Music event.
Fri 06: Classic Swing @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.
Fri 06: New Orleans Preservation Jazz Band @ Oxbridge Hotel, Stockton. 1:00pm. £5.00.
Fri 06: Rendezvous Jazz @ The Monkseaton Arms, Monkseaton. 1:00pm.
Fri 06: WORKSHOP: Philosophy of Arts & Entertainment @ Lit & Phil, Newcastle. 2:00pm. A Newcastle Festival of Jazz & Improvised Music event.
Fri 06: Balo @ Lit & Phil, Newcastle. 6:20pm. A Newcastle Festival of Jazz & Improvised Music event.
Fri 06: Paul Skerritt @ 3Sixty Champagne Lounge, Hadrian’s Tower, Newcastle. From 7:00pm. To book a table - 0191 933 8591.
Fri 06: Lexer/Mayes/Noble + Semay Wu + Miman @ Lit & Phil, Newcastle. 7:20pm. A Newcastle Festival of Jazz & Improvised Music event.
Fri 06: Dulcie May Moreno @ The Vault, Hexham. 7:30pm. £20.00. Book in advance. Moreno with Alan Law, Paul Grainger & John Bradford.
Fri 06: Dean Stockdale Quartet @ Saltburn Community Hall. 7:30pm. 'Celebrating Oscar'.
Fri 06: Nu Brass Sounds: Big Brass Bash @ Billy Bootlegger’s, Newcastle. 8:00pm. Free.
Fri 06: TBC @ Prohibition Bar, Newcastle. 8:00pm. Blind Pig Blues Club. A 'Jar on the Bar' gig.

Sat 07: WORKSHOP: Philosophy of Arts & Entertainment @ Lit & Phil, Newcastle. 10:15am. A Newcastle Festival of Jazz & Improvised Music event.
Sat 07: Hot Club du Nord @ St Augustine's Parish Centre, Darlington. 12:30pm.
Sat 07: Bugge & Niccols + Moore & Fairhall @ Lit & Phil, Newcastle. 1:00pm. A Newcastle Festival of Jazz & Improvised Music event.
Sat 07: Play Jazz! workshop @ The Globe, Newcastle. 1:30pm. Tutor: Steve Glendinning - All the Things You Are. £25.00. Enrol at:
Sat 07: Abbie Finn Trio @ The Vault, Darlington. 6:00pm. Free.
Sat 07: Rie Nakajima @ Lit & Phil, Newcastle. 6:20pm. A Newcastle Festival of Jazz & Improvised Music event.
Sat 07: Paul Skerritt @ 3Sixty Champagne Lounge, Hadrian’s Tower, Newcastle. From 7:00pm. To book a table - 0191 933 8591.
Sat 07: Samuel Blaser Trio + Toxvaerd & Zeeberg + Muramatsu & Welch @ Lit & Phil, Newcastle. 7:20pm. A Newcastle Festival of Jazz & Improvised Music event.
Sat 07: Anth Purdy @ Prohibition Bar, Newcastle. 8:00pm.
Sat 07: Rendezvous Jazz @ Red Lion, Earsdon. 8:00pm. £3.00.

Sun 08: Zoë Gilby Quintet + Ubunye @ The Globe, Newcastle. 2:00pm. Line-up inc. Tony Kofi. A Newcastle Festival of Jazz & Improvised Music event.
Sun 08: Tommy Bentz Band @ Tyne Bar, Newcastle. 4:00pm. Free. USA blues band.

Thursday, November 10, 2022

Mike Durham's International Classic Jazz Party: Rendezvous with Rhythm - Ellington Small Bands in the 1930s + That's All - Annette Hanshaw + Hot Town! Fess Williams + The Professor + Is Everybody Happy? - Ted Lewis + Battle of the Bands - Henderson vs The Missourians + Sunday Night Pub Jam - Nov. 6

The Classic Jazz Party fails in one respect - it deprives festival goers of sleep. Year after year, from Thursday's late evening 'welcome concert' through to Sunday evening's late night jam session, there is little opportunity to get some shut eye. 

For some, Sunday began early - 10:00am or thereabouts - with the prospect of rummaging through a record dealer's stall of rare 78s. Yes, there is a market for the old shellac discs and here in West Allotment (the Village Hotel backs onto the village's terraced houses) the collectors were out in force. Sales, trades and deals were being done ahead of the third day of the 2022 Classic Jazz Party's noon start.

Anything 'Ellington' is a must and the afternoon's session included Claus Jacobi's presentation of Rendezvous with Rhythm - Ellington Small Bands in the 1930s. Small group recordings led by the likes of Cootie Williams, Johnny Hodges and Rex Stewart were under the microscope, with Jacobi (pictured) leading an Anglo-European outfit. Perhaps the late night (early hours of Sunday morning) finish to Saturday's pub jam did for the CJP's American contingent! Enrico Tomasso as Cootie and Rex, Lars FrankJean-François Bonnel and Jacobi taking turns in trying to emulate Hodges and co. This was the business! 

All the way from Chicago, Roya Naldi (photo left) sang a selection of songs associated with Annette Hanshaw. In devising the set, Michael McQuaid assembled a top notch ensemble including David Horniblow on the rarely-heard bass sax, Young Talent Award-winner Curtis Volp and, all the way from County Durham, virtuoso violinist Emma Fisk (pictured). Naldi's elegance, poise and nuanced reading of the material won her many new fans. 

Hot Town! - Fess Williams (photo at top) closed the afternoon session. Michael McQuaid led the charge supported by a heavyweight ensemble featuring Andy Schumm (cornet), Torstein Kubban (trumpet), four-strong reeds and pianist Andrew Oliver. This 'Hot Town' New York blast sent all 280 of us on our way. Time for dinner, then onto the last lap.

The final evening session of this year's Classic Jazz Party began with Andrew 'Piano Professor' Oliver at the Kawai. Few in the hall would have been aware of Oliver's one-time flirtation with contemporary jazz. Formerly resident in London, some years ago our man from Oregon toured Britain as part of an outfit which was, musically speaking, a million miles from what was heard here on North Tyneside. A fine set. 

Tom 'Spats' Langham showcased the 'high-hatted tragedian of song' in a half hour set titled Is Everybody Happy? - Ted Lewis. Dressed appropriately (high hat and spats), Langham peppered his set with anecdotes about his subject, Ted Lewis, playing guitar (unamplified, of course) and singing in his usual engaging manner. Anything Spats does has the Midas touch.

And to the final set of the 2022 Classic Jazz Party. Originally the brain child of the late Keith NicholsBattle of the Bands - Henderson vs The Missourians pitted two star-studded ensembles against one another in friendly but fierce competition to decide which band would be crowned 'best band'. BBC employee Jonathan Holmes brought along a state of the art digital 'clap-o-meter' (a decibel counter). The louder the applause, the higher the 'score', a simple method to determine the result.

A toss of the coin decided which of the two bands would take to the stage first. Claus Jacobi readied his troops (Fletcher Henderson's band), Michael McQuaid's Missourians would have to wait their turn. And so to battle!  There was a lot riding on this, professional pride if nothing else! 

Jacobi's men steadied themselves...charge! Andy SchummTorstein KubbanJon-Erik Kellso, that's some spearhead, played as if their lives depended upon it. The rhythm section - Jacob Ullberger (banjo, guitar), Malcolm Sked (tuba, string bass), Richard Pite (drums) - stoked the fires, at the end of each number, the clap-o-meter recording raucous applause. So loud was the hollering it would have come as little surprise if local residents half a mile away had reported an earthquake! 

McQuaid and co had it all to do. Rico Tomasso and Malo Mazurié were powerful allies, likewise pianist Colin Good. And then there was Josh Duffee, top man behind the traps. The Missourians gave as good as they got, the clap-o-meter pressed into action once more. Cue huge applause. The bandleaders weren't above a little chicanery. As one band was on stage, several of the opposition band's musicians paraded in front of the stage with banners proclaiming Vote Such and Such! If one band could stoop to such underhand tactics, so could the other. Mid-tune, banners were torn to shreds and thrown at the on-stage opposition! Such antics were met with a mix of cheers and boos! The music was superb, the comedic element all good fun. For the record, the contest was a close run thing, a mere four decibels separating the bands. And the winning band...Michael McQuaid's Missourians! Hurrah! Hiss! Boo!

A memorable weekend went out with a bang in the form of a third and final late night jam session. Trumpeters Torstein Kubban and Jon-Erik Kellso co-led the finale and once again it would prove to be a dizzying affair. To a man and a woman they got up to have a blow. Early morning calls for some (a 3:30am car to the airport) didn't deter the participants. Highlights were many, not least Analucia Tomasso singing like a dream and Félix Hunot (accomplished on guitar and banjo) singing On the Sunny Side of the Street. So many memories, next year (2023) there will be many more. Russell. (All Sunday's photos are © Malcolm Sinclair)

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