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Bebop Spoken There

Branford Marsalis: "As ignorance often forces us to do, you make a generalisation about a musician based on one specific record or one moment in time." - (Jazzwise June 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!"


15491 (and counting) posts since we started blogging 15 years ago. 512 of them this year alone and, so far, 133 this month (May 31).

From This Moment On ...

Tue 06: Paul Skerritt @ The Rabbit Hole, Hallgarth St., Durham DH1 3AT. 7:00pm. Paul Skerritt's (solo) weekly residency.
Tue 06: Jam session @ Black Swan, Newcastle Arts Centre. 7:30pm. House trio: Stu Collingwood (piano); Paul Grainger (double bass); Sid White (drums).

Wed 07: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.
Wed 07: Darlington Big Band @ Darlington & Simpson Rolling Mills Social Club, Darlington. 7:00pm. Rehearsal session (open to the public).
Wed 07: 4B @ The Exchange, North Shields. 7:00pm.
Wed 07: Take it to the Bridge @ The Globe, Newcastle. 7:30pm.

Thu 08: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ The Holystone, Whitley Road, North Tyneside. 1:00pm. Free. CANCELLED! BACK ON JUNE 15.
Thu 08: Easington Colliery Brass Band @ The Lubetkin Theatre, Peterlee. 7:00pm. £10.00.
Thu 08: Faye MacCalman + Blue Dust Archive @ Cobalt Studios, Newcastle. 7:00pm.
Thu 08: Dilutey Juice + Ceramic @ The Ampitheatre, Sea Road, South Shields. 7:00pm. Free. A South Tyneside Festival event.
Thu 08: Lara Jones w. Vigilance State @ Lubber Fiend, Blandford Square, Newcastle. 7:00pm.
Thu 08: Michael Littlefield @ the Harbour View, Roker, Sunderland. 8:00pm. Free. Country blues.
Thu 08: Tees Hot Club @ Dorman's Club, Middlesbrough. 9:00pm.

Fri 09: Classic Swing @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.
Fri 09: New Orleans Preservation Jazz Band @ Oxbridge Hotel, Stockton. 1:00pm. £5.00.
Fri 09: Rendezvous Jazz @ The Monkseaton Arms, Monkseaton. 1:00pm.
Fri 09: Castillo Nuevo @ Revolución de Cuba, Newcastle. 5:30-8:30pm.
Fri 09: Emma Rawicz @ Sage Gateshead. 8:00pm.

Sat 10: Miners' Picnic @ Woodhorn, Ashington. Music inc. Northern Monkey Brass Band (3:00-3:50pm); New York Brass Band (4:00-4:55pm).
Sat 10: Front Porch Three @ The Globe, Newcastle. 7:00pm. Free. Americana, blues, jazz etc.
Sat 10: Merlin Roxby @ Prohibition Bar, Newcastle. 8:00pm. A 'Jar on the Bar' gig.

Sun 11: WORKSHOP: Tim Richards' Jazz Piano Workshop @ JG Windows, Newcastle. Time TBC. Further details tel. 0191 232 1356.
Sun 11: Jeremy McMurray's Pocket Jazz Orchestra @ Ropner Park, Stockton TS18 4EF. 2:00-4:00pm. Free.
Sun 11: Am Jam @ The Globe, Newcastle. 2:30pm. Free.
Sun 11: 4B @ The Exchange, North Shields. 3:00pm.
Sun 11: Groovetrain @ Innisfree Sports & Social Club, Longbenton NE12 8TY. Doors 6:30pm. £15.00 (£7.00. under 16).
Sun 11: Jeffrey Hewer Collective @ The Globe, Newcastle. 8:00pm.

Mon 12: Harmony Brass @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm.

Wednesday, May 17, 2023

Sunday Night @ the Globe: Eternal Triangle + Andy Champion - May 14

(© Ken Drew)
Eternal Triangle: Trevor Watts (saxes); Veryan Weston (keys); Jamie Harris (percussion)

I last saw Watts  and Weston six years ago at the Bridge Hotel and before that in 2013, and I'm told that Harris previously played with Watts at the Cluny, all for Jazz North East. But their respective reputations are well  founded in countless sessions and bands with various combinations of players over the years. Tonight we were looking forward to Eternal Triangle playing the music of Trevor Watts, with compositions originally inspired by rhythmic structures from Africa and South America alongside some European musical forms. Although the band’s combination was new to me, the expectant audience arrived early to the jazz bar upstairs at the Globe, knowing what treats were in store. It was to be a full house again!

From the off, it was apparent that a rhythmically-based set was ahead of us, with Harris providing a strong lead in that department. With a front row seat, it was a delight to see how Harris played his assorted congas and cymbals - all without sticks or mallets, but just with his bare hands. 

The range of rhythms encompassing various techniques were nicely varied throughout the set, providing a sound base for the tunes called by Watts (I didn't note them down alas) and played strongly by Watts and Weston. Most had an African feel to them (no surprises there, given Watts' leadership in his ‘Moiré Music’ ensemble in which he set his freewheeling jazz against African rhythms) and here the three blended well together in a variety of rhythmic styles. Whilst the congas were rather loud, Watts could always be heard. Weston also made his presence felt in a little more laid back way, adding various voices to the mix on the Nord - occasionally looking up smiling, and enjoying the gig. Overall, it was serious stuff, yet always providing a joyous sound which the audience, and band, took delight in being part of.      

(© Ken Drew)
Andy Champion: (double bass, FX pedals)

Andy Champion had opened up the evening with a solo set with just himself, his double bass, some effects pedals, and many years of experience. He's capable of playing in a variety of settings but he seems very comfortable indeed in putting his bass, its strings* and FX pedals through their paces. What could go wrong ?  Well, actually nothing, it was flawless. From the start there was an interesting slow crescendo of bowed strings which morphed into a suite of strings (courtesy of the carefully controlled FX) which then slowly morphed into single strings, which soon became staccato strings. Then at an increasing pace, a cacophony of strings.  And so it continued! 

Champion displayed complete control over the instrument, using the pedals to great effect, and the overall sound which was sonically complex, yet told a story, giving a wonderful sonic journey of a double bass out to enjoy itself and to provide stimulation and enjoyment to the audience. If this had been a recorded performance you would wonder how many hours it took to lay down those tracks. But in reality it was all performed in real-time, providing a wonderful and exhilarating sonic performance. Next time, can we hear more? Maybe several sections of a 'Suite for Double Bass'?  Please!  


So, a double bill providing an absolute treat for the audience, each set providing great contrasts in where unleashed jazz can take you. Finally, I've just seen that Olie Brice is running his 'Two Ships' Festival of improvised music at Hastings (on Sat 20th May) with Eternal Triangle being supported by Faye MacCalman (solo).   We must be doing something right at Jazz North East, for others to follow what we're doing in Newcastle! Ken Drew

* I recall and often relate the time in December 2013 when, after Marilyn Crispell & Raymond MacDonald had just played a duo set, they invited  Champion to join them for an encore. He slotted in comfortably, but mid-performance one of the strings of Champion's bass snapped. Gulp!  But, not least because it was a totally improvised set (he'd never played with them before) he carried on with three strings and two loose ends. Bravo! Not something he, nor I, nor the audience will likely ever forget.


Russell said...

Nice review, Ken. I seem to remember Andy breaking a string on another occasion. I've never seen any other double bass player break one string, let alone two!

Pam said...

Great review Ken. Two fabulous sets!
Andy Champion is a wizard his set was nothing short of astounding!

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