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Bebop Spoken There

Ben Pollack: "The kind of people who go for the old style New Orleans jazz are the same kind of people who go in for collecting antiques." - (Down Beat May 5, 1950).

Flip Phillips: "I heard this band out in California. I think - Lu Waters, isn't it? They sure can march down the street but I wouldn't want to march with them!" - (Down Beat June 15, 1951).

Today Tuesday June 27

Evening
CANCELLED! Atlas - Jazz Café, 25 Pink Lane, Newcastle NE1 5DW. 8:15pm. £10/£8 (conc.). JNE 'Women Make Music'.
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Charles Gordon (solo piano) - Redwood Bar, Vermont Hotel, Newcastle. 10pm - midnight. Free.
Maine Street Jazzmen - British Legion Club, West Jesmond Ave., Newcastle NE2 3EX. 8:30pm. £5.
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To the best of our knowledge, details of the above events are correct but may be subject to alteration.

Monday, June 26, 2017

CD Review: Kathrine Windfield Big Band

(Review by Lance).
A compelling album by an outstanding Danish Big Band. Not a swing band by any means and, although there are foot-tapping moments, mainly it's a contemporary ensemble with barely a do-wa-do-wa-do-wa in sight. Instead, Ms. Windfield successfully, and originally, explores territories previously prospected by Gil Evans, Mingus, George Russell, Kenny Wheeler, Mike Westbrook and Mike Gibbs among others. She does it well and loses nothing in comparision to her better known, outside of Denmark, contemporaries.

Gordon Goodwin’s Big Phat Band @ Royal Northern College of Music, Manchester - June 25

(Review by Russell).
They flew 6000 miles to play two concerts. A capacity audience at this first concert greeted this Los Angeles supergroup with wild applause, all before a note was played. The Wigan International Jazz Festival sought the services of this greatest of big bands for some fifteen years and now, finally, we were about to hear the band live, in concert. Festival Director Ian Darrington introduced the band in simple fashion; Welcome the best big band on the planet.
Cameras flashed as the Big Phat Band strolled onto the stage, the best big band on the planet. MD Gordon Goodwin acknowledged an ecstatic audience as the band’s British premiere began right on time. The eighteen-piece Big Phat Band, comprising of Los Angeles’ A-list film and recording studio session musicians, exuded a casual air, their collective CV simply amazing. Boy, this lot could play!

Update on forthcoming gigs at Blaydon Jazz Club

SATURDAY AFTERNOON SESSION - 15th July 1pm to 3.30pm - £5.00
Colin Aitchison tpt, Franco Valussi clt, Steve Andrews sax/clt, Alan Rudd bass, Roly Veitch gtr.
The annual visit of the Hong Kong based Colin & Franco and friends. It wasn't possible to arrange an evening concert this year hence this Saturday afternoon session. 
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Sunday, June 25, 2017

Jazz Lads back at Saltburn next Sunday (July 2)

Ray Dales (alto); Jeremy McMurray (keys); Ian Bosworth (guitar); Adrian Beadnell (bass); Paul Smith (drums).
The Jazz Lads, pictured left, make their monthly trip to Saltburn Golf Club next Sunday (July 2). Starts 8pm with admission £5. Where better on a balmy Summer's evening?
Lance.

Saturday, June 24, 2017

Noel Dennis Trio @ Gala Theatre, Durham - June 23

Noel Dennis (trumpet & flugelhorn), Paul Edis (piano) & Andy Champion (double bass)
(Review by Russell/Photos courtesy of Brian Ebbatson)
Is there a more lyrical trumpet player? Noel Dennis has the pedigree of a top flight London-based musician yet chooses to combine his work as an academic with his love of jazz. Having relocated to his native north east following a short stint working in Glasgow, Dennis is once again playing a select number of gigs throughout the region.
This Gala Theatre gig followed a remarkable pattern; for several months the Gala’s lunchtime jazz concert has sold out days, if not weeks, in advance. Noel Dennis was greeted by a full house. The one hundred seats were occupied in time for a one o’clock start with Dennis quipping that Durham was the region’s jazz capital. 

Paul Skerritt Band @ Jazz Café - June 23

Paul Skerritt (vocal): James Harrison (piano); Anth Ord (bass guitar); Tom Chapman (drums).
(Review by Lance).
Skerritt has acquired a beard since the last time I saw him. He's also just come off his honeymoon so I guess shaving isn't his top priority in the mornings. In celebration of the nuptials, a tray of Rice Crispy based wedding cake was offered around and, it has to be said, it was the best Rice Crispy based wedding cake I've ever tasted bar none. Come to think of it, it's the only Rice Crispy based wedding cake I've ever tasted! It was still delicious - as was the music.
Putting on the Ritz got the party underway and it was quite a party. This band don't do subtle or maybe they do but perhaps it's so subtle only the most keenly attuned ears notice it and you don't get many keenly attuned ears in The Caff on a Friday night.

The Gabi Heller Quartet @ The Globe - June 22

Gabi Heller (vocals); Steve Glendinning (guitar); Dave Parker (bass); Mark Robertson (drums)
(Review by Ann Alex)
This band was as great as ever, so the difficulty for the reviewer is trying to say something different about the performance. Here goes: I noticed Gabi’s clever acting ability in interpreting the songs, especially her very expressive left hand (the hand not holding the mike) pleading, spreading, twisting, in order to convey emotion. I noticed the wide range of different tones that Stevie entranced from the guitar, Dave practically dancing with the bass in his enthusiasm, and Mark matching his drumming wonderfully to the different moods of the songs, sticks, brushes, mallets, playing cymbals only, as suggested. Gabi, who is an actor as well as a singer, put her heart and soul into all the songs, and I think maybe all jazz singers should study acting as well. The songs are worth it.

Friday, June 23, 2017

More Group Theory photos.

Mike Tilley has kindly sent me two photos from last night's gig at the Jazz Cafe which was reviewed and previewed by Russell in the previous two posts.











Lance.
PS: Don't miss the Paul Skerritt Band at the Jazz Café tonight at 9pm.

Group Theory @ The Jazz Café - June 22

Dan Garel (alto saxophone), Matt Jacobs (piano), Dylan Purches (double bass) & Tristan Bacon (drums)
(Review by Russell)
The previous evening the magnificent Durham University Big Band brought the house down. This small group session promised to do the same. Four musicians from DUBB returned to play tunes written by alto saxophonist Dan Garel interspersed with a selection of jazz standards. One of the quartet is about to graduate, two have a final year ahead of them, and the fourth member is about to complete his first year at Durham University.
Garel’s Symmetries opened a long, one set, programme. Alto saxophonist Garel demonstrated an amazing command of his instrument, possessing an incisive, biting tone. Garel took a look at Have You Met Miss Jones? turning it inside out with his band mates right there; pianist Matt Jacobs sat listening, playing when necessary, giving Garel room to stretch out, drummer Tristan Bacon (a fine big band drummer) revealed a small group sensitivity (brushes and mallets in evidence during the evening), and bass player Dylan Purches appeared unperturbed throughout. 

Thursday, June 22, 2017

In [Group] Theory one not to miss

Tonight (Thursday) at Newcastle’s Jazz Café four musicians from Durham University will play two sets of original compositions. The quartet played the venue last night as members of the Durham University Big Band, and, quite possibly, slept there overnight! Pianist Matthew Jacobs has been working with NYJO and alto saxophonist Dan Garel has recently returned from studying at McGill University, Montreal. The duo will be joined by DUBB mates Dylan Churches, bass, and drummer Tristan Bacon. Last night’s tremendous big band session whets the appetite. What, exactly, could we expect to hear? First class musicianship, that’s for sure. Anyone with a passing interest in the ‘original composition’ end of the jazz spectrum will be at the Jazz Café tonight. Eight o’clock start.       
Russell.    

Durham University Big Band @ The Jazz Café - June 21

(Review by Russell/Photos courtesy of Mike Tilley)
University bands are by their very nature in a constant state of flux. Students graduate, moving on to who knows what? The standard varies from one academic year to the next. Durham University Big Band has achieved the seemingly impossible in maintaining the highest of standards over two or three years, perhaps longer. The current edition of DUBB is an exceptionally talented ensemble and this Newcastle Jazz Café gig would be the last time they would perform together in public.
The summer solstice, another balmy evening on Tyneside, the Jazz Café’s front door and windows open, tempting the passer-by. Beer and cake on the ground floor, beer and big band jazz upstairs. Fifteen musicians in the first-floor room don’t leave much room for an audience, but hey, hearing a powerful big band at a distance of half a metre is a thrilling, visceral experience. The Durham band (DUBB) is an award-winning one. Regular gigs, studio recordings, and workshops with some of the best jazz musicians on the scene (most recently with Callum Au), DUBB take the music seriously, adopt a professional approach and clearly enjoy what they do.

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About this blog - contact details.

Bebop Spoken Here -- Here, being the north-east of England -- centred in the blues heartland of Newcastle and reaching down to the Tees Delta and looking upwards to the Land of the Kilt.
Not a very original title, I know; not even an accurate one as my taste, whilst centred around the music of Bird and Diz, extends in many directions and I listen to everything from King Oliver to Chick Corea and beyond. Not forgetting the Great American Songbook the contents of which has provided the inspiration for much great jazz and quality popular singing for round about a century.
The idea of this blog is for you to share your thoughts and pass on your comments on discs, gigs, jazz - music in general. If you've been to a gig/concert or heard a CD that knocked you sideways please share your views with us. Tell us about your favourites, your memories, your dislikes.
Lance (Who wishes it to be known that he is not responsible for postings other than his own and that he's not always responsible for them.)
Contact: lanceliddle@gmail.com I look forward to hearing from you.

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