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Bebop Spoken There

Art Blakey: "You [Bobby Watson] don't want to play too long, because you don't know they're clapping because they're glad you finished!" - (JazzTimes, Nov. 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!"


15848 (and counting) posts since we started blogging 15 years ago. 855 of them this year alone and, so far, 53 this month (Sept. 18).

From This Moment On ...


Sat 23: Tyne Valley Big Band @ Tanfield Railway, Gateshead. 2:00-4:00pm. Free. A '1940s Weekend' event.
Sat 23: Jason Isaacs @ Stack, Seaburn. 3:30-5:30pm. Free.
Sat 23: Andrew Porritt & Keith Barrett @ Cullercoats Watch House, Front St., Cullercoats NE30 4QB. 7:00pm.
Sat 23: Michael Woods @ Prohibition Bar, Newcastle. 8:00pm. Free. A 'Jar on the Bar' gig. Country blues.

Sun 24: Musicians Unlimited @ Park Inn, Hartlepool. 1:00pm. Free.
Sun 24: More Jam @ The Globe, Newcastle. 2:00pm. Free.

Mon 25: Harmony Brass @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.
Mon 25: Michael Young Trio @ The Engine Room, Sunderland. 7:00pm.

Tue 26: Paul Skerritt @ The Rabbit Hole, Hallgarth St., Durham DH1 3AT. 7:00pm. Paul Skerritt's (solo) weekly residency.

Wed 27: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.
Wed 27: Darlington Big Band @ Darlington & Simpson Rolling Mills Social Club, Darlington. 7:00pm. Rehearsal session (open to the public).
Wed 27: Take it to the Bridge @ The Globe, Newcastle. 7:30pm.

Thu 28: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ The Holystone, Whitley Road, North Tyneside. 1:00pm. Free.
Thu 28: Alice Grace Quartet @ King's Hall, Newcastle University. 1:15pm. Free.
Thu 28: Gateshead Jazz Appreciation Society @ Gateshead Central Library, Gateshead. 2:30pm. All welcome.
Thu 28: Faye MacCalman + Snape/Sankey @ Cobalt Studios, Newcastle. 7:00pm.
Thu 28: Zoe Rahman @ Jesmond United Reformed Church, Jesmond, Newcastle. 7:30pm. A Newcastle Festival of Jazz & Improvised Music event.
Thu 28: '58 Jazz Collective @ Hops & Cheese, Hartlepool. 7:30pm.
Thu 28: Speakeasy @ Queen's Hall, Hexham. 7:30pm. £15.00. A Southpaw Dance Company presentation. Dance, audio-visuals, Count Basie, Benny Goodman, swing dancers etc.
Thu 28: Mick Cantwell Band @ Harbour View, Sunderland. 8:00pm. Free. Ace blues band.
Thu 28: Tees Hot Club @ Dorman's Club, Middlesbrough. 9:00pm.

Fri 29: Classic Swing @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.
Fri 29: New Orleans Preservation Jazz Band @ Oxbridge Hotel, Stockton. 1:00pm. £5.00.
Fri 29: Rendezvous Jazz @ The Monkseaton Arms, Monkseaton. 1:00pm.

Saturday, May 27, 2023

House of the Black Gardenia @ Hoochie Coochie - May 26

Elise Rana (vocals, washboard); Pete Tanton (trumpet); David Gray (trombone); Keith Robinson (reeds); Katja Roberts (violin); Elliott Rush (piano); Michael Littlefield (guitar, banjo, vocals); Neil Hopper (bass, sousaphone); Kit Haigh (drums)

Well this was a Hoochie first - the band started ahead of time! However, it didn't matter, the swing dancers were already on the floor primed and ready to Lindy Hop or Shag (the dance).

As such, this was a double header. Black Gardenia doing their thing on stage whilst, down on the dance floor the movers and shakers were doing their thing.

It was a fascinating scenario. Most of the dancers were dressed for the occasion, in fact one or two of the guys could have made my sartorially elegant friend and harmonica hot shot Ray Burns look as though he'd just put in a half shift on the assembly line at Nissan. 

The terpsichoreans were pretty damn good, one or to could have taken Fred and Ginger to a split decision whilst others (not many) brought to mind an old Jimmy Dorsey record - Arthur Murray Taught me Dancing in a Hurry!

But of course, entertaining as all this was, BSH was here for the music which was just about as good as it gets in this indefinable genre. It's jazz, it's swing, it's blues, it is music. 

We've heard Gray, Tanton and Robinson in many different settings and styles, I've yet to encounter one where they couldn't cut it. Rana plays washboard - you don't see many of them in Hoochie - and has a voice to match the 1930s era the band seek to recreate. Littlefield excels on guitar, does what people do on banjo and sings the blues like he was born on the south side of Chicago. Hopper, whether wearing a sousaphone or slapping the bass is at the core of the rhythm section alongside Haigh and Rush whilst Roberts' violin adds an additional texture.

The majority of the material was familiar to the fans although there were a couple of newer ones: Queen Witch and Ice Cream For Breakfast both quite brilliant.

Great stuff! Lance

The Mooche; The Mad Russian; Baby Don't You Tear my Clothes; You Rascal You; One in a Million; Why Won't You Tell me Why?; Ice Cream For Breakfast; Tin Roof Blues; Graveyard Shift; Ain't it Hard?; Joshua Fit the Battle of Jericho; I Can't Take it no Longer; Viper Man; Evenin'

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