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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.

Monday, May 29, 2023

Sugaray Rayford @ the Fire Station, Sunderland - May 26

My first time at the Sunderland Fire Station, a nice spacious venue. I was expecting a blues artist – generally a safer bet for this type of gig – but what we got was more soul. Neither neo nor retro but the type of thing that’s just kept going quietly in the hinterland ever since soul music’s heyday.

And he could sing too, the best comparison I could come up with was Eddie Levert of the O’Jays, one of the very best, though playing an album by bluesman Lucky Peterson on the way home also showed similarities, which was a happy coincidence.

And he was funny, though his preoccupation with big-legged women with big booties may have proved troublesome in another town with a different generation in amongst the 120 strong audience.


Bill Withers Who is he and What is he to You? opened the set but was followed by mostly original stuff, him doing much booty shaking to songs about big-legged ladies. A couple of blues excursions proved they could do that too, lots of rock star posturing by the appropriately attired guitarist.


Just to demonstrate how good his band were – and he also had trumpet, sax, keyboards, bass and drums (though the guitarists resonator sadly remained on the stand, perhaps an indication that getting more bluesy could have been an option) – they gave us short bursts of reggae, country and western and bebop, asking the audience if the latter was over our heads. Perhaps, but maybe also above the heads of the band who were very good but not quite great.

 The low-point came when the keyboardist – playing mostly a Hammond sounding organ clone – sang what Sugar described as a negro spiritual but sounded to me more like Meatloaf, the guitarists posturing reaching its apogee.


Two albums at the merch stand: one more soul and the other more blues according to the salesperson. Mrs T streamed the soul one and I bought a CD of the blues one but he’d got them the wrong way round.  Will we see Mrs T coming round to blues?! Steve T      

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