Total Pageviews

Bebop Spoken There

Charles McPherson: “Jazz is best heard in intimate places”. (DownBeat, July, 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.


16590 (and counting) posts since we started blogging 16 years ago. 483 of them this year alone and, so far, 29 this month (July 14).

From This Moment On ...


Sat 20: Snake Davis & Helen Watson Duo @ Chopwell Community Centre NE17 7HZ. 7:30pm. £17.50.

Sun 21: Paul Skerritt @ Hibou Blanc, Newcastle. 2:00pm.
Sun 21: Salty Dog @ The Globe, Newcastle. 3:00pm.
Sun 21: 4B @ The Ticket Office, Whitley Bay. 3:00pm. Free. Sun 21: The Big Easy @ The White Room, Stanley. 5:00pm.
Sun 21: Ben Crosland Quartet @ The Globe, Newcastle. 8:00pm.

Mon 22: Harmony Brass @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm. Free.

Tue 23: Nomade Swing Trio @ Newcastle House Hotel, Rothbury. 7:30pm. £10.00. Tickets from Tully’s of Rothbury or at the door (cash only). A Coquetdale Jazz event.

Wed 24: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm. Free.
Wed 24: Darlington Big Band @ Darlington & Simpson Rolling Mills Social Club, Darlington. 7:00pm. Free. Rehearsal session (open to the public).
Wed 24: The Ronnie Scott’s Story @ The Fire Station, Sunderland. 7:30pm.
Wed 24: Take it to the Bridge @ The Globe, Newcastle. 7:30pm. Free.
Wed 24: Milne-Glendinning Band @ Cafédral, Owengate, Durham. 9:00pm. £9.00. & £6.00. A Durham Fringe Festival event.

Thu 25: Merlin Roxby @ Prohibition Bar, Newcastle. 8:00pm. Free. Ragtime piano. A ‘Jar on the Bar’ gig.
Thu 25: Tees Hot Club @ Dorman’s Club, Middlesbrough. 8:30pm. Guests: Garry Hadfield (keys); Noel Dennis (tpt); Richie Emmerson (tenor sax); Adrian Beadnell (bass).
Thu 25: Milne-Glendinning Band @ Cafédral, Owengate, Durham. 9:00pm. £9.00. & £6.00. A Durham Fringe Festival event.

Fri 26: Classic Swing @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm. Free.
Fri 26: Rendezvous Jazz @ The Monkseaton Arms. 1:00pm. Free.
Fri 26: New Orleans Preservation Jazz Band @ The Oxbridge Hotel, Stockton. 1:00pm. £5.00.
Fri 26: Stuart Turner @ Prohibition Bar, Newcastle. 8:00pm. Free. A ‘Jar on the Bar’ gig.
Fri 26: Milne-Glendinning Band @ Cafédral, Owengate, Durham. 9:00pm. £9.00. & £6.00. A Durham Fringe Festival event.
Fri 26: Bold Big Band @ Old Coal Yard, Byker, Newcastle. 9:30pm. A Newcastle Fringe Festival event.

Thursday, February 29, 2024

Album review: Lauren White - Making it up as we go Along

Lauren White (vocals); Quinn Johnson (piano, Rhodes); Larry Koonse (guitar on 3 tks);  Kevin Axt (bass); Trey Henry  (bass on 1 tk); Brian Swartz   (trumpet on 4 tks); Katisse Buckingham (sax, flute on 4 tks); Chris Wabich (drums on 4 tks); Dan Schnelle (drums on 4 tks); Ray Brinker (drums on 1 tk); Paul Jost (vocal on 1 tk)

White's fifth album and the fourth to have been reviewed on BSH lives up to the high stand of the other three. Described as 'songs of love's complexities' the lyrics, in the main, meet that criteria.

The smoky voice, the kind of voice you used to hear in a night club scene in an old black and white movie, usually just before somebody got shot, is tailor-made for the material. As it happens, one of the earlier albums, Out of the Past, did indeed feature songs from noir films.

Album review: Uroboro – A Story Like Fire (Discus Music)

Andy Champion (bass on disc 2); Laura Cole (piano & keyboard); Anton Hunter (guitar & electronics); Johnny Hunter (drums); Keith Jafrate (saxophones & spoken word); John Pope (bass & electronics on disc 1)

Despite its fine cover, this one passed me by when it was released last year, and, I think, I found it on a John Pope discography somewhere. One look at the line-up would immediately suggest it was a must have, especially for someone who has followed the North East scene in recent years. As well as Pope (possibly the hardest working man in show business at the moment) most of the others, bar Jafrate are regular visitors to local bandstands or recording sessions. A bit of research reveals that Uroboro have been in existence, originally as a trio (Jafrate, Cole, Pope) since 2018 and have evolved into the quintets that recorded this album.

Olly Styles @ King's Hall, Newcastle University - Feb. 29

Olly Styles (tenor sax); Jacob Egglestone (trumpet); Conor Emery (trombone); Jenny Sykes ? (keyboards); Jamie Watkins (bass guitar); Josh Weir (drums)

Four o'clock, Thursday, term time in King's Hall it's student performances, ranging from classical to folk, rock and pop, and, of course, jazz. This week, tenor saxophonist Olly Sykes represented the jazz element here at Newcastle University. 

Wednesday, February 28, 2024

Paul Hartley Trio + Jeff Guntren @ the Railway, Stockport - Feb. 27

(© Jeff Pritchard)
Jeff Guntren (tenor sax); Paul Hartley (guitar); Ken Marley (bass); Eryl Roberts (drums).

As Paul explained at the start of show, he had tried to book Jeff Guntren on two previous occasions but Jeff, unfortunately, had had to cancel due to unforeseen circumstances. Originally from Davenport, Iowa, USA, Jeff now resides in Bramhall which is a small village not far from Stockport and he has made a big impression on the local jazz scene with his powerful sound and post-Coltrane playing style. He reminds me of George Garzone who played some gigs in Stockport many years ago as a sideman in John Allmark’s quintet and who can be occasionally seen on the Smalls' NYC live podcasts.

Preview: The Great North Big Band Jazz Festival (March 1 - 3)

It's that time of year again. For the big band fan, this weekend all roads lead to Chester-le-Street. Now in its 21st year, the Great North Big Band Jazz Festival attracts big bands from all points, keen to participate in one of the great events in the big band calendar. Year round preparations are all but complete, the weather forecast is set fair (ie no snow!), let (friendly) battle commence!

Tuesday, February 27, 2024

Emma Wilson - Memphis Soul

Good to see north east born blues and soul singer Emma Wilson's latest album Memphis Soul being reviewed (***) within the hallowed pages of the March issue of DownBeat. Coupled with her recent interview - and stunning cover photo - in a recent issue of Blues Matters suggests that the future looks good.

Visit Emma's website for more info and listen to a few songs. Lance

Monday, February 26, 2024


(Press release) In a months time we are honoured to be playing our 78s for a couple of hours at The HMV store, 363 Oxford Street. We will of course be using exclusively His Master's Voice wind-up gramophones. Our playlist will be from the 1920s and 1930s, concentrating on British dance bands.

So make a date for Thursday 21st March at 2pm at The HMV store, 363 Oxford Street, London.

Please share this far and wide, so that we might share the joy of gramophones to the widest audience.

Lance: And don't forget Colin Aitchison's HONG KONG 78 RPM RECORD CLUB.

(Press release) NN North Sea Jazz Festival 2024 – Rotterdam Ahoy Centre

This year's North Sea 'Jazz' Festival programme has been announced. 

Friday 12 July: Amaro Freitas Trio; Avishai Cohen Bande Iroko; Brittany Howard; Chucho Valdés: Irakere 50; corto.alto; D.K. Harrell; Emily King; Henri Texier 'An Indian's Life'; Jamie Cullum; Kinga Głyk; Kurt Rosenwinkel Quartet 'The Next Step Reunion Tour'; Kymara; Laufey; Lehmanss Brothers; Myra Melford - Fire & Water Quintet; Potter*Mehldau*Patitucci*Blake; Raye; Reuben James; Smino; Vulfpeck

DJM Trio @ the Railway, Stockport - Feb. 25

(© Jeff Pritchard)
Dave Walsh (drums); Jamie Taylor (guitar); Martin Longhawn (keys).

 Another busy Sunday night at the Railway with a trio containing a newcomer to this venue Jamie Taylor who played standing up without the help of a stool or chair. The other members of this unit have played here in various combos but this was the first time as an organ trio. They certainly made the audience sit up when they started things off with an up-tempo I'll Remember April  which drew much applause.

The Mark Williams Trio as seen by Malcolm Sinclair

These superb shots of the Mark Williams Trio's gig taken by Malcolm Sinclair at the Gala Theatre in Durham City on Feb. 23 arrived too late to be added to the review but were of such high quality I felt that they couldn't be overlooked so here they are (l-r: Rob Walker, Mark Williams, Paul Susans). Lance

Sunday, February 25, 2024

Album review: David Preston – Purple / Black Vol. One

David Preston (guitars); Kit Downes (Piano, Hammond and keys); Sebastian Rochford (drums & synths); Kevin Glasgow (bass)

This is an album that deserves to be liked more than I did. Everything that I’d look for is present and correct it just doesn’t quite all hang together as much as I’d hoped. Perhaps it’s the frequently occurring problem that occurs when an artist realises that his recording opportunities are limited and wants to essay a range of styles. Often this works to make a strong, wide-ranging album showing off all of their strengths; sometimes it doesn’t.

It starts well in a solid groove from the get go on O’Winston. Its rolling funk driven by Glasgow’s bass. Preston’s Scofield-esque playing works against Downes’ shards of notes. Electric guitar doesn’t always work well with acoustic piano but it does here. The two instruments coil around each other, swapping solos and each provoking the other. It greatly under-stays its welcome.

Saturday, February 24, 2024

Strictly Smokin' Big Band @ the Glasshouse, Gateshead - Feb. 23

(© Patti)
Dennis Rollins (trombone); Michael Lamb (MD), Pete Tanton, Dick Stacey, Billy Bradshaw (trumpets); Jamie Toms, Matt Forster, Keith Robinson, Steve Summers, Sue Ferris (reeds); Mark Ferris, Kieran Parnaby, Chris Kurgi-Smith, John Flood (trombones); Graham Don (piano); 
Pawel Jedrzejewski (guitar); Michael Whent (bass guitar); Guy Swinton (drums); Dave McKeague (vibes, perc); Alice Grace (vocals) 

Once again the indefatigable Strictly Smokin' Big Band pulled in the crowds at the Glasshouse (Sage, Gateshead). Along with their star guest, the amazing trombonist Dennis Rollins, the band gave the audience a night to remember.

It was a night to remember in several ways and not least because of the knowledge that lead trumpet Gordon Marshall was no longer with us. Leader Lamb paid an emotional tribute to Gordon who recently died at the age of 58.

Jazz Time Aycliffe Radio - Sundays 6.30-8.00pm (repeated Tuesdays 8.00-9.30 p.m.)

Aycliffe Radio is now available on DAB in County Durham & the Darlington area.

Playlist 25/02/24 (repeated Tuesday 27/2/24)

Friday, February 23, 2024

Mark Williams Trio @ The Gala Theatre, Durham - Feb. 23

Mark Williams (guitar); Paul Susans (bass); Rob Walker (drums)

The Gala Theatre's 2024 lunchtime jazz concert series is going from strength to strength with another full house turning out to greet the Mark Williams Trio. Guitarist Williams is of the mercurial kind - inventive, masterful, in possession of his own identifiable sound. Joining the Irishman today were bandmates Paul Susans, bass guitar, and drummer Rob Walker. A new album is on the horizon and here in the Gala's studio space Williams took the opportunity to perform a selection of several new compositions.

Album review: Yotam Silberstein - Standards

Yotam Silberstein (guitar); George Coleman (tenor sax); John Patitucci (bass); Billy Hart (drums)

A good choice of standards for Silberstein's first album of classic songs. With the exception of Stella by Starlight none could be said to have been overworked and even Stella is given a makeover that transforms her into the youthful beauty she once was.

Strictly speaking, only those members of the general public who  are of a certain age would probably recognise no more than four of the eight tracks as standards - Serenata, If I Loved You, Never Let me go and Stella by Starlight.

Album review: Mike LeDonne Groover Quartet + Gospel Choir

Mike LeDonne (Hammond B3); Eric Alexander (tenor sax); Peter Bernstein (guitar); Joe Farnsworth (drums); Aisha de Haas, Audrey Martells, Carolyn Leonhart, Everett Bradley, Keith Anthony Fluitt, Jamie Leonhart, Jamile, JD Walter, John James, La  Tanya Hall, Tanesha Gary (gospel choir) 
+ Daniel Sadownick (perc. on 2 tks); Vincent Herring (alto sax on 1 tk)

There is much more to this album than LeDonne's Groover Quartet which does what it says on the tin which is groove! There's also the gospel choir which combines with the quartet in a unique setting.

LeDonne's fiery playing along with NYC A-listers Alexander, Bernstein. and drummer Farnsworth, who has an impressive workout on LeDonne's Genesis, create the groove with the choir adding a kind of sanctified funk. 

Laura Anglade : You'd Be So Nice To Come Home To - (Cole Porter)

Maurice Summerfield discovered this YouTube clip of Laura Anglade. The young French/American singer (now living in Toronto) was 16 at the time of this video. Now 23 she is currently pursuing a career as a jazz singer. Lance  

Thursday, February 22, 2024

Late Night Chicago Radio

I feel both humbled and overwhelmed by Denny Farrell's words on his programme Late Night Chicago Radio* in respect of the passing of my wife, Marlene.

He played Nat King Cole's version of You'll Never Know, a number I'd opted for at her funeral, Johnny Hartman and John Coltrane's My One and Only Love as well as his own choice of Chicago guitarist Andy Brown's version of You're my Everything.

It was beautifully done although I had to remind Denny that I was in the UK and not Australia! Still, Americans aren't noted for their geographical accuracy!

Thanks Denny. Lance

Silje Nergaard and Espen Berg @ Pizza Express, Soho – Feb. 16

Silje Nergaard (vocals, toy glockenspiel, cassette player); Espen Berg (piano)

Back in 1990, when I was investigating clocked cars and counterfeit cassettes in the wild streets of Darlington, I would often drive around listening to a tape of Silje Nergaard’s first album. Back then she was on the cusp of chart stardom and she had, I thought, all she needed for chart success,  namely breezy tunes (Tell Me Where You’re Going with Pat Metheny on guitar), lovely hair and a fondness for lying down to sing in her video.  Thirty five years later, she stands up to sing and the hair is shorter, however if you wanted an engrossing, enjoyable, but still relaxed, evening with musicianship of the highest order then the Pizza Express in Soho was the place to be last week.

Another Black Swan jam session - Feb. 20

Ben Phillips (piano); Paul Grainger (double bass); Mark Robertson (drums) + Harry Keeble (tenor sax); Paul Ruddick (alto sax); Shivan Ruddick (trumpet); Joe Steels (guitar); Luis Verde (alto sax); Abbie Finn (drums); Jacob Egglestone (guitar); Steve Summers (tenor sax); Kate O'Niell (vocals); Bailey Rudd (drums); John Rowland (tenor sax); Liam Oliver (guitar); Fionnula Bradbury (vocals); Lizzie ? (guitar); Becky Tuck (vocals); Remy Coulthard Boardman (vocals); Josh Weir (drums); Jane ? (trumpet, vocals); Vlada ? (alto sax); Ian Drever (vocals); Johannes Dalhuijsen (bass clarinet); Jamie Watkins (bass guitar); Nick Gould (tenor sax); David Gray (trombone); Esther Coombes (alto sax, clarinet)

The recent trend of audiences arriving earlier and earlier continued. Doors at seven o'clock with a seven thirty downbeat was the usual routine. Not anymore, the early birds are getting themselves down to the Black Swan way before seven. Shortly after seven most seats were occupied. The horns turned out in force, three guitarists, vocalists galore and more, may more. 

Celebration of the life of Ted Pearce

A celebration of the life of pianist Ted Pearce will be held this afternoon (Feb. 22). See poster for details.

Tuesday, February 20, 2024

In The Wee Small Hours Of The Morning

This has long been one of my favourite Frank Sinatra tracks and never more so than tonight after what has been an emotional day.

Tomorrow it will be back to the 'day job' of listening to the new jazz releases and getting on with my life but, until then, I'll share my grief with Frank and apologise to him for not being included on the playlist at the Crem. He can, however, rest assured that he will be on mine... Lance 

Monday, February 19, 2024

Info wanted on Max Shaw

Can anyone help out Rachel Cuthbert re her late father Max/Mack Shaw who played bass/bass guitar with Hank Marvin and Bruce Welch and later with the Panama Jazzmen and the Alan Price Set.

He also played with a group led by drummer Pete Chester, son of comedian Charlie Chester, who charted with Ten Swingin' Bottles.

The photo shows him on the far right of that group. Rachel would love it if any of our readers could help out with more photos and memories of her dad. Lance

Andrzej Baranek Quartet @ the Railway, Stockport - Feb. 18

(© Jeff Pritchard)
Andrzej Baranek (keys); Tony Ormisher (guitar); Ed Harrison (bass); Eryl Roberts (drums).

Another great night of hard-driving bebop at the Railway and even before the band had played a note the room was standing room only which was good to see. Andrzej had brought along that fine guitarist Tony Ormisher who I believe is based in Liverpool but it’s a while since I recall seeing him at this venue. He was given plenty of solo space and had no problem playing the ten numbers that Andrzej had selected, a mixture of bop tunes, standards, and some Latin flavoured themes. There was one tune I had not heard before, Beautiful Moons Ago which was a ballad that Andrzej first heard on an album that the great pianist Bennie Green recorded at the Village Vanguard with bassist Christian McBride. This was written by Nat King Cole and recorded by his trio.

Dulcie May Moreno @ The Yamaha Music School, Blyth - Feb. 19

Dulcie May Moreno (vocals); Mark Williams (guitar); Mick Shoulder (double bass); John Bradford (drums)

The Yamaha Music School on Seaforth Street in Blyth is a welcome new addition to the region's thriving music scene. Nine Monday lunchtime concerts (predominately classical) were announced earlier this year, this afternoon's concert presented jazz singer Dulcie May Moreno. A fourth concert in five days - Durham, Newcastle, Hexham and today, Blyth - concluded Moreno's 'up north' tour. A jazz gig in south east Northumberland is a rarity, the Blyth venue an unknown quantity, the good news is an audience turned out!

Sunday, February 18, 2024

Lewis Watson Quartet @ Queen's Hall, Hexham - Feb. 18

Lewis Watson (tenor sax); Mark Williams (guitar); Andy Champion (double bass); John Bradford (drums)

Where to begin? At the beginning. Queen's Hall sold out. They came from far and wide, begging the question: Why? Answer: Lewis Watson. Over the last couple of years or so tenor saxophonist Lewis Watson has returned to live performance. Wherever he appears it's a full house, most recently in Scarborough. This afternoon, Hexham.

Jazz Time Aycliffe Radio - Sundays 6.30-8.00pm (repeat Tuesdays 8.00-9.30p.m.)

Aycliffe Radio is now available on DAB in County Durham & the Darlington area.

Playlist 18/02/24 (repeat Tuesday 20/2/24)

Valentine's continued: Jazz Messengers, Duke Ellington, Frank Sinatra, Count Basie & Carmen McRae, Miles Davis.

Birthday Memories: Art Tatum / Buddy DeFranco.

Black History Month:  Billie Holiday, Duke Ellington & Johnny Hodges, Nina Simone, Thelonious Monk, Charles Mingus, Louis Armstrong/King Oliver.

Tony Eales' Choice: Michael Treni.

What’s On in the NE: The Mark Williams Trio, Strictly Smokin' Big Band.

Bobby Timmons.


Dulcie May Moreno @ The Vault, Hexham - Feb. 17

Dulcie May Moreno (vocals); Mark Williams (guitar); Mick Shoulder (double bass); John Bradford (drums)

Another full house. First Durham, then Newcastle and this evening in Hexham. The Vault is what you might call 'snug', some might say uncomfortably so. An ancient, stone built, former brewhouse standing on Hallgate, long before the down beat all advance purchase ticket holders had taken their seats. The Allendale Brewery's bottled beers are favourites along the Tyne Valley and a first bottle of Black Grouse duly arrived courtesy of the venue's efficient table service. 

You and the Night and the Music opened the first of two sets. The Schwartz/Dietz standard currently finds a place in Dulcie May Moreno's set and her 'Northern Jazz Cats' (Messrs Williams, Shoulder and Bradford) purred nicely. This evening's concert, the third of four northern tour dates, featured a couple of our vocalist's original songs. One of them, Take Me to New York, is proving particularly effective, a 'jazz' song her audience can relate to, either in their dreams or recalling personal memories of the Big Apple and its many jazz greats.

Saturday, February 17, 2024

Album review: Betty Bryant - Lotta Livin'

Betty Bryant (piano, vocals); Robert Kyle (tenor sax, flute, harmonica); Richard Simon (bass); Kenny Elliott (drums); Kleber Jorge (guitar) + Tony Guerrero (trumpet tks 7, 9); Hussain Jiffrey (elec. bass tk 8); Yu "Big Poppa" Ooka (guitar tk 7); Kevin Winard (perc.) 

Bryant is 94 years young and this is her 14th album. Singer, pianist, composer, arranger she's the real deal. 

Back in 1987, a Betty Bryant Day was declared in Kansas  City - a place that, over the years, has never been short of jazz icons and this album provides justification for the honour.

Blues, ballads and originals roll easily from both her tongue and her fingers. Caressing the words, suggesting meanings that maybe even the composers themselves didn't know were there. Part blues, part cabaret but all jazz. Think Lena Horne or Pearl Bailey and you're getting close. Blues to Get Started, an instrumental track, was possibly inspired by her mentor, another Kansas City piano legend, Jay McShann.

The Giles Strong Quartet @ The Old Black Cat Jazz Club, Sunderland - Feb. 16

Giles Strong (guitar); Pete Tanton (trumpet, flugelhorn); Ian Paterson (double bass); John Bradford (drums)

Seventeen Nineteen is at the heart of 'Old Sunderland'. Standing on the south bank of the Wear in Hendon, the recently renovated listed building is home to a wide range of events and this evening saw the launch of the Old Black Cat Jazz Club. The first in a series of monthly concerts featured the Giles Strong Quartet. 

Here at Seventeen Nineteen it was heartening to see a good turn out for this inaugural jazz event. The former Georgian church is an impressive space and the 'chamber jazz' of the Giles Strong Quartet made best use of the acoustics. A virtuoso guitarist, Giles Strong is a firm favourite on the regional jazz scene and beyond. Joining Giles were trumpeter Pete Tanton, bassist Ian Paterson and drummer John Bradford, three of the most empathetic musicians one could wish to hear. 

Friday, February 16, 2024

Dulcie May Moreno @ the Lit & Phil, Newcastle - Feb. 16

(© Pam)
Dulcie May Moreno (vocals); Mark Williams (guitar); Mick Shoulder (double bass); John Bradford (drums)

After last night's gig in Durham, Dulcie's whistle-stop, mini tour of the north east continued with a lunchtime stop off at the Lit & Phil.

As always, the monthly concerts at this historic building (dating back to 1825) were  sold out in advance and those perceptive punters who'd booked early weren't disappointed.

Dulcie's rich tones, her acute sense of pitch and a cute smile captured the eyes and ears of the listeners.

Dulcie May Moreno @ Claypath Deli, Durham - Feb. 15

Dulcie May Moreno (vocals); Mark Williams (guitar); Mick Shoulder (double bass)

Walk half way up Claypath and you'll find Claypath Deli. Locally sourced produce, sourdoughs, real coffee, the small space offers a regular programme of live music. This evening Dulcie May Moreno was in town. Joining Dulcie to play two sets of standards, original compositions and a pop song or two were guitarist Mark Williams and bassist Mick Shoulder.

Originally from Tyneside, Dulcie resides in Kent. From time to time she returns to the region, invariably to play two or three concerts. You and the Night and the Music opened the set, Mark and Mick more than comfortable with the material. It's one of the wonders of a jazz gig that musicians who see one another only occasionally can pick up where they left off, adapting to any given circumstance. Claypath Deli's snug space saw Dulcie and the boys positioned in front of the window. Passers by would cast a glance and walk on by, perhaps wondering who could be singing in their local deli.

Thursday, February 15, 2024

Album review: Corey Weeds - Home Cookin'

Corey Weeds, James Danderfer (tenor sax); Steve Kaldestad (alto sax); Dave Say (baritone sax); Brad Turner, Chris Davis (trumpet); Brian Harding, Jim Hopson (trombone); Chris Gestrin (piano); John Lee (bass); Jesse Cahill (drums). Jill Townsend (MD).

This gem has been in my in-tray since November 2023 and, for some inexplicable reason, never quite made it to the top of the pile. Possibly because some young upstarts sneaked in and jumped the queue.

Well it's finally made it and not a month too soon. Bebop for today, tomorrow and forever more. Eleven of Vancouver's finest blowing on charts by Townsend and Bill Coon.

The Music Auction - Anderson & Garland (Feb. 28)

This epic auction, which takes place just three times a year, is legendary to those in the know. Featuring high-quality musical instruments, rare and collectable vintage vinyl, and unique, one-off pieces of music memorabilia, it's not an auction to be missed!

Highlights of this sale include a rare 1961 Golder Hofner jazz guitar, a Gibson custom shop 355, a Gibson custom Les Paul ‘Gold Top’, a Linn Sondek LP12 turntable, a Muramatsu ST model open-holed flute, and much more.

Preview: The Giles Strong Quartet - The Old Black Cat Jazz Club, Sunderland (Fri. 17)

Tomorrow (Friday 17 February) sees the launch of the Old Black Cat Jazz Club! Wearside could do with a regular session promoting jazz to the Sunderland public and and this is it. Seventeen Nineteen is the place, a beautifully restored Georgian church in Hendon, Sunderland. Why 'Seventeen Nineteen'? you ask. Well, the now listed building opened in 1719, hence the name.

Wednesday, February 14, 2024

Album review: Paul Higgs and Pavane - Summer Lullaby

Paul Higgs (trumpet); Natalie Rozario (cello); Chris Ingham (piano); Andy Watson (guitar); Jerome Davies (bass); George Double (drums); Graham Cuttill (percussion)

If you were looking for this in a 'proper' record shop you'd be wondering where to start. Jazz? Classical? Easy Listening?  It could be in any one of those browsers and wouldn't be out of place.

At various times there are suggestions of early Miles, Chris Botti, even Herb Alpert. Higgs' plaintive sound evokes aural images of all three.

Tuesday, February 13, 2024

Album review: The Clark Tracey Quintet - Introducing Emily Masser

Clark Tracey (drums, backing vocals); Emily Masser (vocals); Alex Clarke (tenor/alto sax, flute); Graham Harvey (piano, Rhodes); James Owston (bass).

A Bitta Bittadose: Bobby Watson's composition is introduced by a few bars from Owston's bass which, I was lying in bed at the time, threatened to fast forward me to the Land of Nod. This is no criticism of James but it was so dreamily melodic I was moving into a world where happy little bluebirds sing then - KAPOW! Masser and Clarke come in all guns blazing! Masser scatting like as though she'd invented the genre and Clarke in unison before blowing tenor like well, er, like Alex Clarke and that's a whole lot of tenor playing!

Album review: Stella Bass – Look For The Silver Lining

Stella Bass (vocals); Johnny Taylor (piano); Barry Donohue (double bass); Dominic Mullan (drums); also on some tracks Michael Buckley (sax); Ronan Dooney (flugelhorn)

This second album from Irish singer Stella Bass began life during the Covid lockdown. Ms Bass wanted to create something hopeful and positive and the choice of songs reflect that. They include long-time favourites, songs to honour friends whose lives had changed, and songs written both with collaborators and on her own. The album includes jazz standards, songs from musical theatre and a couple of originals, All the Colours of my Love and Still.

Cheltenham Jazz Festival 2024

The line-up of events for this year's Cheltenham Jazz Festival has been announced.

To find out more about the festival which runs from May 1 to May 6 covering a wide variety of genres and venues go HERE. Lance

Monday, February 12, 2024

Preview: The Family Band + Abbie Finn Trio (Bobik's - Sat. 17 Feb.)

Saturday (Feb 17) sees the latest Jazz North East presentation at Bobik's in Jesmond. Tom Rivière's Family Band will join forces with the Abbie Finn Trio to present an enticing double bill of contemporary jazz. The Family Band is no stranger to the region having played pre-pandemic gigs in Durham (at the now demolished TESTT Space) and Newcastle (at the Jazz Café, now Prohibition Bar). Its family members have performed in various other line-ups across County Durham and Tyneside. Tenor saxophonist Riley Stone-Lonergan and trumpeter Kim Macari are powerhouse players well worth catching. The bass and drums pairing of Tom Riviére and the ubiquitous Steve Hanley ensure the quartet is one happy family. 

Munch Manship Quartet @ the Railway, Stockport - Feb. 11

(© Jeff Pritchard)
Munch Manship (flute/tenor sax); Richard Wetherall  (keyboards); Dave Lynane  (bass); Dave Hassell (drums).

Always a sure-fire room filler, Munch started the concert before a packed house with a lively rendition of that much played standard Softly as in a Morning Sunrise. ably assisted by a superb rhythm section of the two Daves plus Richard Wetherall who for this gig brought with him a full-size 88 note Nord Grand keyboard. Most regulars at this venue are used to hearing Richard on the house upright piano but tonight the volume level was up a notch as was the energy vibe.  

(Press release) SNJO concert tour showcases top young Scots

The Scottish National Jazz Orchestra’s Nu-Age Sounds marks a major celebration of Scotland’s vibrantly exciting young jazz scene with performances in Dundee, Glasgow and Edinburgh from Friday 1st to Sunday 3rd March.

Conceived and produced by the orchestra’s artistic director, saxophonist Tommy Smith, the project brings together a cast of trailblazing musicians, each of them multiple award winners, with the internationally acclaimed SNJO and visual producer Dillon Barrie. 

Scottish Album of the Year 2022 winner and Mercury Music Prize nominee, pianist Fergus McCreadie, BBC Young Jazz Musician 2022, bassist Ewan Hastie, singer kitti, saxophonists Helena Kay and Matt Carmichael and trombonists Noushy and Liam Shortall, who has earned acclaim under the name corto.alto, are all contributing new music to the project. Smith has also orchestrated music by his band KARMA, whose debut album won the Album of the Year title at the Scottish Jazz Awards.

Sunday, February 11, 2024

Calvert and the Old Fools @ Dorman's Jazz Club, Middlesbrough - Feb. 8

Sam Calvert (drums); Richie Emmerson (tenor sax); Andrew Meadowcroft (vocals/keys); Tony Wood (double bass).

Going by previous guest band appearances, the audience was fully expecting a night of well played, entertaining, mainly jazz standards and were certainly not disappointed. Andrew's fine vocals featured on all of the numbers striking just the right balance between vocals and instrumental work.

A Foggy Day showed from the start how tight an ensemble they were, Andrew's vocal and fine piano solo, Richie's vibrant sax along with great backing from Tony and Sam set the format for the night.

Saturday, February 10, 2024

Jazz on the Tyne – Valentine’s Special 2024

In this special edition of the podcast, presenter Colin Muirhead plays requests, previews upcoming gigs and highlights new music, with tracks by the Strictly Smokin’ Big Band, Tubby Hayes, Dulcie May Moreno, the Riviera Quartet, Ruth Lambert, Georgia Cécile, Louise Dodds & Elchin Shirinov, Mark Williams, säje feat. Jacob Collier, Ella Fitzgerald & Louis Armstrong, Chet Baker, and Frank Sinatra with Quincy Jones & his Orchestra.

You can listen to the show anytime HERE.

Plus, you can request tunes for future programmes, or pass on news or feedback by emailing Colin at or by heading to

Jazz Time Aycliffe Radio - Sundays 6.30-8.00pm (repeated Tuesdays 8.00-9.30 p.m.) 

Aycliffe Radio is now available on DAB in County Durham & the Darlington area.

Playlist 11/02/24 (repeated Tuesday 13/2/24) 

Racial Justice: Nina Simone.

St. Valentine’s: Chet Baker, Ella Fitzgerald.

Alan Barnes/Darlington New Orleans Jazz Club - requests Mardi Gras: Emmet Cohen w  Evan Christopher, Harry Connick Jr., Wynton Marsalis QuintetPreservation Hall Jazz BandChris Barber.


More Valentines: Jeff Barnhart, John Hallam, Tina May, Anita O'Day, The Jazz Messengers.

Preview: Dulcie May Moreno (The Vault, Hexham)

The Vault in Hexham presents Dulcie May Moreno! On Saturday 17th February, vocalist Dulcie May Moreno makes a welcome return to the intimate stone built cellar venue on Hallgate. Originally from Newcastle, now based in Kent, Dulcie will be in concert with a top notch trio comprising Mark Williams (guitar), Mick Shoulder (double bass) and John Bradford (drums).

Expect two sets of jazz standards, a selection of popular songs, perhaps some Julie London and Chet Baker and one or two original compositions. Doors open at half past seven, book in advance, no admission on the night. Note...ONLY TWELVE TICKETS LEFT! Book now or they'll be gone, gone, gone! Russell  

Friday, February 09, 2024

The Jazz Groove

With so much jazz on the online stations this one is worth checking out. It's currently playing Scott Hamilton with Bucky Pizzarelli - Lost in the Middle of a Kiss.

There's various choices as to your preferred jazz genre but all of them are 'the goods' and it's 24 hours non-stop. I've hit on the 'Dreams' link which may or not send me to sleep but, either way, I won't be complaining! - unless I was missing out on royalties!* LINK. Lance

*A post coming up shortly.

Classic Swing @ Cullercoats Crescent Club - Feb. 9

Olive Rudd (vocals); Jim McBriarty (alto sax, soprano sax, clarinet, vocals); Alan Marshall (tenor sax, clarinet); Neville Hartley (trombone, vocals); Jeremy McMurray (keyboards); Alan Rudd (double bass); Ian Stocks (drums)

As white horses rushed in, Cullercoats Bay stood deserted, not a mad dog nor an Englishman. The club on the crescent, Cullercoats Crescent Club, offered refuge from the elements. Once inside, the pick of the tables, an order placed at the bar, we were all set for another Friday lunchtime Classic Swing session.

As always, Tommy Moran's Classic Swing got things going. A fine number, the boys in the band did Tommy proud. A Jim McBriarty vocal on Honeysuckle Rose maintained a swinging start to the afternoon. A Neville Hartley feature, I Wish You Love, was rudely interrupted by an urgent announcement from the management: a VW parked right outside a fire exit had just picked up a parking ticket, what's more, thirty seconds later, another vehicle dunched into said VW! The culprit wasn't one of the jazz regulars, perhaps it was someone in the upstairs lounge. Happy days!

Blog Archive