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Bebop Spoken There

Greg Osby: “I have my own style, my own attitude, my own opinions about things. I'm not a follower". DownBeat, February, 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.


16221 (and counting) posts since we started blogging 16 years ago. 103 of them this year alone and, so far, 47 this month (Feb. 18).

From This Moment On ...

February 2024

Wed 21: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm. Free.
Wed 21: Darlington Big Band @ Darlington & Simpson Rolling Mills Social Club, Darlington. 7:00pm. Free. Rehearsal session (open to the public).
Wed 21: Take it to the Bridge @ The Globe, Newcastle. 7:30pm. Free.

Thu 22: Vieux Carré Jazzmen @ The Holystone, Whitley Road, North Tyneside. 1:00pm. Free.
Thu 22: Student Performances @ King’s Hall, Newcastle University. 4:00pm. Free. Inc. Remi Coulthard-Boardman (voice).
Thu 22: Crooners @ Darlington Hippodrome. 7:30pm. £30.00., £27.00., £24.00., £18.00.
Thu 22: Merlin Roxby @ Prohibition Bar, Newcastle. 8:00pm. Ragtime piano. A ‘Jar on the Bar’ gig.
Thu 22: Soznak @ The Schooner, South Shore Road, Gateshead. 8:00pm.
Thu 22: Tees Hot Club @ Dorman’s Club, Middlesbrough. 8:30pm. Guests Kevin Eland (trumpet); Josh Bentham (sax); Garry Hadfield (keys); Ron Smith (bass).

Fri 23: Mark Williams Trio @ The Gala, Durham. 1:00pm. £8.00.
Fri 23: Classic Swing @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm. Free.
Fri 23: Rendezvous Jazz @ The Monkseaton Arms. 1:00pm. Free.
Fri 23: New Orleans Preservation Jazz Band @ The Oxbridge Hotel, Stockton. 1:00pm. £5.00.
Fri 23: Salty Dog Trio @ The Greenhouse, Tynemouth. 7:00pm. £8.00. (£6.00. adv.).
Fri 23: Crooners @ The Maltings, Berwick upon Tweed. 7:30pm. £30.00., £28.00.
Fri 23: Strictly Smokin' Big Band w Dennis Rollins @ Glasshouse, Gateshead. 8:00pm.

Sat 24: NUJO Jazz Jam @ Cobalt Studios, Newcastle. 7:00pm (doors). Free (donations). A Newcastle University Jazz Orchestra event, all welcome.
Sat 24: Bradley Creswick’s Western Swingfonia @ Hexham Abbey, Hexham. 7:30pm. £15.00. A fundraiser for Hexham Abbey.
Sat 24: Papa G’s Troves @ Prohibition Bar, Newcastle. 8:00pm. A ‘Jar on the Bar’ gig.

Sun 25: Musicians Unlimited @ The Park Inn, Hartlepool. 1:00pm. Free.
Sun 25: More Jam @ The Globe, Newcastle. 2:30pm. Free.
Sun 25: 4B @ The Ticket Office, Whitley Bay Metro Station. 2:30pm. Free.
Sun 25: Lindsay Hannon: Tom Waits for No Man + Lee Maddison @ Laurels, Whitley Bay. 4:00pm (3:30pm doors). £11.00., £8.80. inc. bf. SOLD OUT!
Sun 25: Bex Burch + Rachel Musson @ The Globe, Newcastle. 8:00pm. £11.00. Two solo performances. JNE.
Sun 25: Jazz Jam @ Fabio's, Saddler St., Durham. 8:00pm. Free. A Durham University Jazz Society event. All welcome.

Mon 26: Harmony Brass @ Cullercoats Crescent Club. 1:00pm. Free.

Tue 27: Ruth Lambert Quartet @ The Black Swan, Newcastle. 8:00pm (7:00pm doors). £12.00., £10.00. (adv.).

Tuesday, February 06, 2024

Press release: Sheffield Jazz – a brief history over 50 years

Sheffield Jazz first started as Hurlfield Jazz, founded by Fred Brown of Hurlfield Community School with a group of local musicians and a grant from Yorkshire Arts. They booked regular working bands and visiting US musicians touring with UK rhythm sections, including Ronnie Scott, Don Rendell, Sam Rivers, Dexter Gordon, Carla Bley and Barney Kessel. At this time The Arts Council subsidised tours for larger ensembles which would otherwise have been uneconomic. A Jazz Development Officer for the North made it feasible to run a Jazz Festival in Sheffield, which ran for 5 years, initially at The Crucible then at the recently opened Leadmill. Featured bands included Art Ensemble of Chicago, Loose Tubes, John Scofield, Jan Garbarek, Johnny Griffin and Archie Shepp,

The opening of the Leadmill in 1983 was the biggest change to the Sheffield jazz scene and for the rest of the 1980s jazz audiences boomed. Hurlfield Jazz ran local Sunday lunchtime music, international Wednesday evening gigs at the Leadmill and concerts at the Crucible and Sheffield Hallam University. BBC 2 broadcast of a series of concerts from the Leadmill in 1986. One of the best initiatives during the 1980s was the Sheffield Jazz Workshops – the first in the UK and still going strong in 2024, it was a place to meet others and develop as musicians. Local bands recorded on the 1988 compilation album ‘Made in Sheffield’. Wayne Shorter, John Surman and Jack DeJohnette were among those appearing in this period.

When the Leadmill moved to a more commercial programme, in 1991 Hurlfield Jazz was forced out by prohibitively high venue charges and limited access, sources of funding were diminishing and Hurlfield Jazz almost died! But Jude Sacker, who had been involved in Hurlfield Jazz, formed a new committee who found a new venue and changed the name to ‘Sheffield Jazz’. They adopted a policy of booking mainly UK bands, especially promoting young, up-and-coming UK musicians such as Julian Arguelles, Nikki Iles, John Parricelli, Iain Ballamy, Guy Barker and Julian Siegel. They also started concerts at the Crucible Studio in association with Music in the Round, featuring musicians such as John Taylor, Kenny Wheeler, Jamie Cullum, Tim Garland and Ralph Towner.

Throughout the 90s and early 2000s Sheffield Jazz operated from a number of venues, booking up-and-coming bands and established stars with a focus on quality, bringing to Sheffield artists of standing whom the Sheffield audience would not be able to see without travelling to London. From 2004-2014 they were still putting on around 25 gigs each year, with 2-3 concerts at the Crucible Studio. Bheki Mseleku, Stan Tracey , Empirical, Joe Lovano, Polar Bear and Zoe Rahman were among those appearing during this period. Although attracting new and younger audiences, attendances began to tail off, generating a few financial crises. This led to a decision to put Sheffield Jazz on a firmer footing - it became a company limited by guarantee in 2008 and a charity in 2009.

From 2014 to the present Sheffield Jazz has run a varied programme each year, primarily at the current home venue of Crookes Social Club. Featured artists in this period included established musicians such as Gwilym Simcock, Nikki Iles, Tony Kofi and Alan Barnes; rising stars like Fergus McCreadie, Yazz Ahmed, Laura Jurd and Emma Rawicz; plus locally-based musicians who enjoy a national profile, such as Martin Archer and his Anthropology Band and Nadim Teimoori.

Sheffield Jazz has always relied on the work of volunteers: both committee members and trustee/directors and on the army of volunteers who make generally make gigs happen. In 2024 Sheffield Jazz reaches its 50th birthday and to mark this milestone they’re holding a special concert in the Crucible main theatre on Saturday 18th May. It features longstanding Sheffield Jazz favourite Tony Kofi and his quartet and a more recent favourite, rising star Emma Rawicz with her Quartet. For tickets for the Sheffield Jazz 50th anniversary concert visit HERE.


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