Total Pageviews

Bebop Spoken There

Ambrose Akinmusire: “ I am certainly always aware of what the masses are doing. And when I see too many people going one way, I'm going another way - even when I don't know what's over that way". DownBeat, March, 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.


16246 (and counting) posts since we started blogging 16 years ago. 128 of them this year alone and, so far, 72 this month (Feb. 29).

From This Moment On ...

Fri 01: Classic Swing @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm. Free.
Fri 01: Rendezvous Jazz @ The Monkseaton Arms. 1:00pm. Free.
Fri 01: New Orleans Preservation Jazz Band @ The Oxbridge Hotel, Stockton. 1:00pm. £5.00.
Fri 01: Wind Ensemble + Big Band + Jazz Combo + R&B Band @ Boiler House, Newcastle University. 5:30pm. Free.
Fri 01: Joseph Carville Trio @ Saltburn Community Hall. 7:30pm.
Fri 01-Sun 03: Great North Big Band Jazz Festival @ Park View Community Centre, Chester-le-Street. From 8:00pm Friday. Weekend ticket: £20.00.
Fri 01: King Bees @ Prohibition Bar, Newcastle. 8:00pm. A ‘Jar on the Bar’ gig. Blind Pig Blues Club.
Fri 01: Great North Big Band Jazz Festival @ Park View Community Centre, Chester-le-Street. £10.00. Day 1/3. Musicians Unlimited + Festival Band.

Sat 02: Great North Big Band Jazz Festival @ Park View Community Centre, Chester-le-Street. 11:00am. £15.00.. Day 2/3. Senior bands in competition.
Sat 02: Frog & Henry @ St Augustine's Parish Centre, Darlington. 12:30pm.£10.00. Darlington New Orleans Jazz Club. Superb Anglo-American band!
Sat 02: The Vieux Carré Hot 4 @ Repas7 by Night, 7 West St, Berwick TD15 1AS, 07900 627562. Tapas Specials from 5.00pm - showtime 8.00pm.
Sat 02: Cuba Libre @ Revolución de Cuba, Cloth Market, Newcastle. 6:00-9:00pm. Free.
Sat 02: Jeffrey Hewer Trio @ The Vault, Darlington. 7:00pm. Free.
Sat 02: Durham University Big Band @ Durham Students' Union, New Elvet, Durham. 7:30pm. £8.00.
Sat 02: Tom Remon & Laurence Harrison @ Prohibition Bar, Newcastle. 8:00pm. A ‘Jar on the Bar’ gig.
Sat 02: Rendezvous Jazz @ The Red Lion, Earsdon. 8:00pm. £3.00. The band’s 25th anniversary gig!
Sat 02: John Logan @ The Dyvels, Corbridge. 8:00pm. Rat Pack-style swing.

Sun 03: Great North Big Band Jazz Festival @ Park View Community Centre, Chester-le-Street. 11:00am. £10.00.. Day 3/3. School & Youth bands in competition.
Sun 03: Smokin’ Spitfires @ the Cluny, Newcastle. 12:45pm. £7.50.
Sun 03: Alan Law Trio plays Ahmad Jamal’s At the Pershing: But Not for Me & more @ Central Bar, Gateshead. 2:00pm. £10.00. The music of Ahmad Jamal.
Sun 03: Alice Grace & Ben Helm @ St Francis’ Church, High Heaton, Newcastle. 2:00-5:00pm. £12.00. (children free admission). A Children’s Society fundraiser. Two x 30 mins sets. Refreshments available, child-friendly event with participation of children encouraged!
Sun 03: Sax Choir @ The Globe, Newcastle. 2:00-5:00pm. Free (donations). Monthly workshop, all welcome (participant and/or listener).
Sun 03: 4B @ The Ticket Office, Whitley Bay Metro Station. 3:00pm. Free.
Sun 03: ’58 Jazz Collective @ St George’s Venue, Park Road, Hartlepool. 3:30pm (refreshments from 2:30pm). £6.00.
Sun 03: Down for the Count: A Century of Swing @ The Fire Station, Sunderland. 7:00pm.
Sun 03: SH#RP Collective @ The Globe, Newcastle. 8:00pm.
Sun 03: Mostly Moonlight @ Prohibition Bar, Newcastle. 7:00pm. A ‘Jar on the Bar’ gig. Vocals/piano duo.
Sun 03: Remy CB @ Blues & Bourbon, Nelson St., Newcastle. 9:00pm. Free. Newcastle University music student Remy Coulthard Boardman.

Mon 04: Harmony Brass @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm. Free.

Tue 05: Jam session @ The Black Swan, Newcastle. 7:30pm. Free. House trio: Joe Steels, Paul Grainger, Michael Mather.

Wed 06: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm. Free.
Wed 06: Darlington Big Band @ Darlington & Simpson Rolling Mills Social Club, Darlington. 7:00pm. Free. Rehearsal session (open to the public).
Wed 06: Take it to the Bridge @ The Globe, Newcastle. 7:30pm. Free.

Thu 07: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ The Holystone, Whitley Road, North Tyneside. 1:00pm. Free.
Thu 07: Ray Stubbs R & B All Stars @ The Schooner, South Shore Road, Gateshead. 8:00pm.
Thu 07: Merlin Roxby @ Prohibition Bar, Newcastle. 8:00pm. A ‘Jar on the Bar’ gig. Ragtime piano.
Thu 07: Tees Hot Club @ Dorman’s Club, Middlesbrough. Guests: Mark Toomey (alto sax); Donna Hewitt (tenor sax); Garry Hadfield (keys); Ron Smith (bass); Mark Hawkins (drums). 8:30pm.

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!

Blog Archive