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Bebop Spoken There

Tineke Postma: “ I had a huge crush on him [Sting] when I was a teenager ". Jazzwise, June 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.


16476 (and counting) posts since we started blogging 16 years ago. 356 of them this year alone and, so far, 68 this month (May 24).

From This Moment On ...


Sat 25: Tyne Valley Big Band @ Bywell Hall, Stocksfield. 2:30pm.
Sat 25: Baghdaddies @ Spanish City Plaza, Whitley Bay. 3:00pm. Whitley Bay Carnival (outdoor stage).
Sat 25: Northern Monkey Brass Band @ Spanish City Plaza, Whitley Bay. 4:30pm. Whitley Bay Carnival (outdoor stage).
Sat 25: Paul Edis Trio w. Bruce Adams & Alan Barnes @ Queen’s Hall, Hexham. 6:30pm. A Northumberland Jazz Festival event.
Sat 25: Nubiyan Twist @ The Glasshouse, Gateshead. 8:00pm.
Sat 25: Papa G’s Troves @ Prohibition Bar, Newcastle. 8:00pm. A ‘Jar on the Bar’ gig.

Sun 26: Bellavana @ Spanish City Plaza, Whitley Bay. 11:00am. Whitley Bay Carnival (outdoor stage).
Sun 26: Tyne Valley Youth Big Band @ The Sele, Hexham. 12:30pm. Free. A Northumberland Jazz Festival event.
Sun 26: Musicians Unlimited @ Jackson’s Wharf, Hartlepool. 1:00pm. Free.
Sun 26: Alice Grace @ The Sele, Hexham. 1:30pm. Free. Alice Grace w. Joe Steels, Paul Susans & John Hirst.
Sun 26: Bryony Jarman-Pinto @ Queen’s Hall, Hexham. 3:00pm. A Northumberland Jazz Festival event.
Sun 26: Ruth Lambert Trio @ The Juke Shed, North Shields. 3:00pm. Free.
Sun 26: 4B @ The Ticket Office, Whitley Bay. 3:00pm. Free.
Sun 26: Clark Tracey Quintet @ Queen’s Hall, Hexham. 6:00pm. A Northumberland Jazz Festival event.
Sun 26: Saltburn Big Band @ Saltburn Community Hall. 7:30pm.
Sun 26: Ruth Lambert Quartet @ The Globe, Newcastle. 8:00pm.
Sun 26: SARÃB @ The Glasshouse, Gateshead. 8:00pm.

Mon 27: Harmony Brass @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm. Free.

Tue 28: Bold Big Band @ The Black Swan, Newcastle. 8:00pm.

Wed 29: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm. Free.
Wed 29: Darlington Big Band @ Darlington & Simpson Rolling Mills Social Club, Darlington. 7:00pm. Free. Rehearsal session (open to the public).
Wed 29: Jazz Night @ The Tannery, Hexham. 7:00-9:00pm. Free. The first night of a new jam session!
Wed 29: Take it to the Bridge @ The Globe, Newcastle. 7:30pm. Free.

Thu 30: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ The Holystone, Whitley Road, North Tyneside. 1:00pm. Free.
Thu 30: Merlin Roxby @ Prohibition Bar, Newcastle. 8:00pm. Ragtime piano. A ‘Jar on the Bar’ gig.
Thu 30: Tees Hot Club @ Dorman’s Club, Middlesbrough. 8:30pm. Guests Josh Bentham (sax); Neil Brodie (trumpet); Garry Hadfield (keys); Adrian Beadnell (bass);

Fri 31: Classic Swing @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm. Free.
Fri 31: Rendezvous Jazz @ The Monkseaton Arms. 1:00pm. Free.
Fri 31: New Orleans Preservation Jazz Band @ The Oxbridge Hotel, Stockton. 1:00pm. £5.00.
Fri 31: Castillo Nuevo Trio @ Revoluçion de Cuba, Newcastle. 5:30pm. Free.
Fri 31: Borealis @ The Witham, Barnard Castle. 7:30pm.
Fri 31: Redwell @ Prohibition Bar, Newcastle. 8:00pm. A ‘Jar on the Bar’ gig.

Monday, November 13, 2023

Beck Hunters with Laura Cole and John Pope – From Wolves To Water

Mick Beck (tenor sax, bassoon, whistles); Laura Cole (piano); Anton Hunter (guitar, effects); Johnny Hunter (drums, percussion); John Pope (double bass).

This is intense and demanding, (and frequently entertaining across its 35½ minutes) stuff. It was recorded at a performance at the Literary & Philosophical Society as part of last year’s Newcastle Festival of Jazz and Improvised Music.

We crash into it with a single heavy chord and the brief thought that they might be playing A Hard Day’s Night flashes across the mind. But no. Beck proceeds to run through the full range of capabilities open to those who play sax and/or bassoon. There are breathy feral growls and disconnected squeaks, drones and wails. Pope prowls behind him on the bass, wolf-like (or is that determinism based on the title?) The backing from piano, guitar and drums is delicate but punctuated with occasional sonic bombs (which sounds like the most surreal of weather forecasts). It is like a meeting of three minds, with Beck at one point, Pope on bass at another and Cole and the Hunters at a third.

Gradually the landscape shifts as Cole’s angular piano notes come to the fore and the others seem to grapple to keep up with her. A rolling melee breaks to leave Beck unaccompanied, chasing shadows and tying knots. It all seems free and unstructured but as the band come back in or drop out it’s clear that there is a guiding mind (Beck?) orchestrating the interplay.

Half way through an atmosphere of resignation and melancholy reigns before whistles conjure up a pastoral setting; a bird swooping across open fields. It’s a tense moment, with only the most fragile of accompaniment. The tenor asks the questions, and, at first, gets no answers but the crescendo builds and Beck solos like a man possessed, Cole’s heavy chording on the piano is the rock at the eye of the storm as others throw furniture downstairs behind her. Entertaining, as promised.

As we move into the last section the bird call has returned; Pope stepping lightly, on the prowl again and we think of Prokofiev’s Peter and the Wolf. What follows is a brief, accessible section of modern post-bop, but we know it can’t last and it doesn’t it almost sounds like all are racing to get to the end first. Beck, again, solos lustily, short phrases, slurs, sharp stabs are all part of his repertoire. All fades leaving Pope alone to play a death march to the close.

There is some exciting material here and I bet it was enthralling to be in the audience in that moment. From Wolves To Water is out now and is available through the NJaIM Bandcamp pageDave Sayer

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