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Bebop Spoken There

Danny Gatton: "I was tired of playing in beer joints. I wanted to do something tangible like building cars. But once you do music it gets into your blood. You can get away from it for awhile but sooner or later it comes back to you." - (Down Beat April 1991).

Tal Farlow: "There were times when I would stop [playing guitar] and do sign painting." - (Downbeat December 5, 1963)

Archives

Today Monday August 21

Radio
Radio 3: Jazz Now. Live from Pizza Express, Soweto Kinch featuring Andy Sheppard/Carla Bley/Steve Swallow. 11pm.
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Afternoon.
Jazz in the Afternoon - Crescent Club, 1 Hudleston, Cullercoats NE30 3OS. 1pm. Free.
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Evening.
?????
To the best of our knowledge, details of the above events are correct but may be subject to alteration.

Monday, June 30, 2014

CD Review: Dylan Howe – Subterranean New Designs on Bowie’s Berlin

Dylan Howe (drums), Mark Hodgson (double bass), Ross Stanley (piano & synths), Brandon Allen (tenor saxophone), Julian Siegal (tenor saxophone) + Nick Pini (double bass), Adrian Utley (guitar) & Steve Howe (koto)
(Review by Russell).
Subterranean is drummer Dylan Howe’s take on David Bowie’s Berlin trilogy (Station to Station, Low and Heroes). In the mid seventies the Thin White Duke relocated from Mars to Berlin and in so doing ‘reinvented’ himself. The kitsch glam look ditched in favour of the Armani suit, Mr Jones at a stroke alienated long-time fans who didn’t get soul. A few years on, Tin Machine was, for some, the final straw.

Ryan Quigley signs to Whirlwind Recordings

Press release from Whirlwind Recordings.
We are delighted to announce the new signing of Ryan Quigley, one of the premier trumpeters in the UK, known for his extremely rare ability to be both a world class lead player and virtuosic and conceptual improviser.  Ryan’s lead playing has been featured with the upper echelon of big bands, symphony orchestras and pop stars around the world and as a composer and small band leader he has won multiple awards in the UK including the Parliamentary Award for band of the year.  

Redemption @ Bridge Hotel (Splinter). June 28.

John Hall (ten); Jim Hall (pno); Keith Tulip (6 string bs gtr); Martin Wake (dms).
(Review by Lance/photo courtesy of Ken Drew).
This review may not be totally unbiased! I mean when a band writes a tune dedicated to yours truly, what am I going to do - slag them off? Freelance (or is it Free Lance?) was indeed written with me in mind. A very humbling experience and I've got plenty to be humble about!
Thank you guys.
Personal issues aside, this was a powerful session by a band that is continually progressing, programming a mix of originals, interspersed with a few standards (Manteca, Spain and La Fiesta), that provided the audience with two well balanced sets of Latin, jazz rock and a smattering of banter between tunes.
Redemption are a surprisingly insular band inasmuch as I've never seen any of the musicians crop up in other bands unlike many players who seem to be involved with half a dozen different bands. Perhaps Redemption earn their corn playing non jazz gigs. More power to their elbow if it enables them to give a laid back performance such as they did tonight,
Catch them if and when you can.
Lance.

Sunday, June 29, 2014

Great Percussion in Newcastle!

I’m sure many people must have been as enthralled as I was by the 2 young lads doing percussion in Northumberland Street the other day.  Not for them the standard snare drums and cymbals, they use recycled materials and massive amounts of ingenuity.
There were flat pans of all sizes, a wooden stand with bells attached, and one of those wooden sound boxes which the player would normally sit on.  I peeped through the hole in the back and saw what looked liked woolly jumpers stuffed inside, presumably to give a softer sound quality.  Lance tells me that drummers sometimes do this with bass drums – honestly, the things you find out by talking to jazz enthusiasts!  The other lad was beating on buckets of various sizes with his drumsticks, and hitting what looked like those large plastic paint containers as well. He also had a collection of toy drums and tambourines.  They sat on rugs and, of course, sometimes they simply needed to hit the ground with the drumsticks.  Their rhythms were exciting and they were obviously enjoying themselves, and their equipment presumably cost nothing.  I just wish I’d been able to get a photo.  Watch out for them!
Ann Alex   

Leash @ The Jazz Café. June 28

Mark Williams (guitar), Andy Champion (double bass) & Adrian Tilbrook (drums)
(Review by Russell/Photo courtesy of Mike Tilley)
One third Mark Williams Trio, one quarter Full Circle, three fifths ACV. Who would be taking who for a walk? Who’d be let off the leash? Would they be brought to heel? The Jazz Café did good business this Saturday night with those in the know, the curious and the unsuspecting. Most canines were on their best behaviour (save for one unruly bitch yapping incessantly in the corner).

Saturday, June 28, 2014

CD Review: Jacob Young - Forever Young

Jacob Young (gtrs); Trygve Seim (ten/sop); Marcin Wasilewski (pno); Slawomir Kurkiewicz (bs); Michal Miskiewicz (dms).
(Review by Lance).
Graceful, harmonically rich and rhythmically alert jazz is how the notes describe Forever Young and it sums up the album so well I could almost close without saying more. However, to do so would be a disservice to the Norwegian guitarist, fellow countryman Seim and the Polish rhythm section.

And the band played on @ The Jazz Café. June 27

The Babel Metro came and went, Stockdale and Shoulder played on. I’m Old Fashioned demonstrated some things never go out of fashion, then there was the timeless Antonio Carlos Jobim (Triste). To close, bop time. Lester Leaps In – Dean Stockdale and Mick Shoulder leapt right in there. Good enough to leave you dancing up the street. But wait, for an encore we got In the (not quite) Wee Small Hours. Earlier Stockdale had quipped: Who needs a drummer? Indeed!
Russell.

Dean Stockdale/Mick Shoulder Duo @ Jazz Café June 27.

Dean Stockdale (pno); Mick Shoulder (bs).
(Review by Lance).
Travelling by Metro on a Friday night can be a culture shock. A carriage full of the young and not so young shouting incoherently into their mobiles creates the illusion that one has stepped back in time to the Tower of Babel (not the record company!) or maybe even the Harlem Air Shaft portrayed somewhat more eloquently by Duke Ellington back in 1941. 

Friday, June 27, 2014

Tonight at the Jazz Café

The dynamic piano/bass duo of Dean Stockdale and Mick Shoulder are at Jazz Café tonight. 9pm start and it's free!
So c'mon then, what's your excuse?
Lance.

Lonnie Liston Smith @ Hoochie Coochie June 26

Lonnie Liston Smith (keys/vcl); Tabitha Pearson (vcl); Samir Moulay (gtr); Gary Grainger (bs); Greg Grainger (dms).
(Review by Lance/photo top right by Joe Boss Fowler).

This was one of those fantastic nights where I didn't bother making notes but just let the sound waft over me - like a Force 9 'wafts'! And what a waft of sound! Full on and totally integrated. 
Amazing drummer, brilliant guitar soloist and a bass guitarist whose middle name is surely GOD! Lonnie Liston didn't sing but Tabitha Pearson did and how! Tabitha has a range that reaches up into the rafters and beyond to an area where only dogs can hear - lucky dogs! Elsewhere, I've read of comparisions with Minnie Ripperton but Tabitha is earthier than Minnie whilst working in the same incredible compass.
As for Lonnie, what can one say except that he got some great sounds from the two keyboards and fully justified his starring role.
But this wasn't about five people, it was about six.
Warren Thomson, the guy who makes things happen at Hoochie...
Lance

Something for fans to think about

Would honestly help us a lot, when we are subsidizing many gigs, if folks came here [Hoochie Coochie] for a pre-gig drink, rather than turn up at 8.55pm. Not whinging just commenting on something that would help us continue bringing big names here . 
Warren (on F/b)

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Tonight! Lonnie Liston Smith @ Hoochie June 26

Tonight (June 26) sees another coup for Hoochie Coochie in the form of legendary Richmond, Virginia, born pianist and singer Lonnie Liston Smith.
Smith, whose CV includes stints with Art Blakey, Rahsaan Roland Kirk and Miles Davis before forming his Cosmic Express and setting the bench mark for soul/funk bands to aim at, hits the stage at 9pm. Band line up  is listed as follows:
Lonnie Liston Smith - vocals and keys; Tabitha Pearson - vocals; Samir Moulay - guitar; Scott Ambush - bass; Lee Pearson - drums.
All for £10!
How does Warren do it? I don't know, let's just be thankful that he does!
Lance.

CD Review: Kristian Borring - Urban Novel.

Kristian Borring (gtr); Jim Hart (vbs); Arthur Lea (pno); Mick Coady (bs); Jon Scott (dms).
(Review by Lance).
I was impressed by Borring's previous album Nausicaa reviewed here back in 2011. In the three years that have passed since that recording Borring has morphed into one of the finest, most tasteful and accomplished guitarists on the scene, with Jim Hart - one of the world's great vibraphonists - in the mix, the result is another triumph for the Danish guitarist and his team.

RIP Stuart McKie.


The sad news has broken that guitarist and Jazz Co-op member Stuart McKie died yesterday June 25.
Stuart, pictured here in March earlier this year,  was a regular at the Sunday afternoon jam sessions at the Salsa Café as well as at the Co-op's workshops.
His commitment and enthusiasm as well as his very good sense of humour will be sadly missed.
Our sympathies go out to his wife Pam, family and friends.
Rest in Peace.
Lance.

Zöe Gilby talks to Keith Tulip of Redemption.

Tell us a bit about your band. How it formed? band line up and their influences?
Redemption have been in existence for over a decade and a half, originally a Quintet featuring John Hall on Saxes, Jim Hall on Trumpet and Flugel Horn, Ian Smith on Drums and Cowbell, Martin Humphries on Piano and myself on acoustic bass.
We had the privilege of performing at the grand opening of Durham Cricket ground in Chester-Le-Street, played all the Halls of residence in Durham and Newcastle University, various Jazz venues across the North East and some wonderful gig's in Prague.
The new Quartet featuring John on Sax, Jim on Keyboards, Martin Wake on drums and myself on electric 6 - string bass came together a few years ago. Like everyone else on the Jazz scene else we were initially playing the usual cover tunes with a smattering of funky Latin tunes such as Spain, La Fiesta, Some Skunk Funk etc.

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Gaity Band

This is the photo of the Gaity Band Marjorie DeLuca refers to in her comment on Ossie Riani. (I've 'tarted' the pic up a little!) you can see the original on writer/novelist Marjorie's fascinating blog. 
http://marjoriedeluca.blogspot.ca.
Marjorie's father, Bob Horn, is on the photo taken in Houghton le Spring/Durham circa 1930. although I'm not sure which bandsman he is.
Lance.

Mike Walker & Stuart McCallum // Paul Taylor @ The Jazz Café. June 24

(Review by Russell).
The latest in Jazz North East’s series of  Schmazz gigs at the Jazz Café featured British guitarists Mike Walker and Stuart McCallum. All seats in the upstairs room were taken (two of the north east’s finest six-stringers bagged prime seats) and the stage resembled the guitar section of your local musical instrument store. The Greater Manchester-based duo settled down to play the first of two mainly acoustic sets in a setting Walker later described as having ‘a good vibe’.

CD Review: Dino Saluzzi Group - El Valle de la Infancia

Dino Saluzzi (bandoneon); Jose Maria Saluzzi (classical and requinto guitars); Nicolas “Colacho” Brizuela (classical guitar); Felix “Cuchara” Saluzzi (tenor saxophone, clarinet); Matias Saluzzi (electric bass, double bass); Quintino Cinalli (drums, percussion).
(Review by Hugh Cochrane).
It was during the recent visit of MP Chi Onwurah to the Globe that Lance approached me and asked me if I would like to review some CDs. “Er, well...”, I replied. “What do you like?” asked Lance. “Most things”, I replied - “ECM?” suggested Lance, and handed me a package containing two CDs in the iconic black and white livery of the label.

CD Review:Wolfgang Muthspiel - Driftwood

Wolfgang Muthspiel (guitar); Larry Grenadier (double bass); Brian Blade (drums).
(Review by Hugh Cochrane)
Driftwood, the début CD for ECM as leader from Wolfgang Muthspiel, comes with full jazz credentials and features Larry Grenadier on bass and Brian Blade on drums. This album is the first time that these three musicians have come together as a trio, but Muthspiel has played with each of the other members of the triumvirate individually over many years.

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

Jazz 'n Real Ale Train Update

Just to let you know that the 3 remaining Music Trains on Wednesday 25  June; Wednesday 2 July and Wednesday 9 July, the Jazz music and Real Ale Bar, courtesy of High House Farm Brewery, will commence immediately on departure from NEWCASTLE CENTRAL STATION
The jazz trains are the 7.25pm NEWCASTLE to CARLISLE service calling at Metro Centre; Blaydon; Wylam; Prudhoe; Stocksfield; Riding Mill; Corbridge; Hexham; Haydon Bridge; Bardon Mill; Haltwhisle; Brampton; Wetheral; CARLISLE (departs 9.28pm). 

CD Review: Karen Mantler - Business is Bad.

Karen Mantler (vcl/pno/hca);  Doug Wieselman (gtr/bs.clt); Kato Hideki (bs).
I listened and didn't like it. I passed it on to another reviewer who didn't like it either.
I listened again and had to admit there was an almost elusive quirky charm about it. Not enough for me to tell you to go out and buy it but at least enough to suggest you give it a listen and make up your own mind.
In actual fact I found reading the words from the booklet brilliant and much more interesting than hearing them sung!
Maybe I should treat them as poetry rather than songs!
Judge for yourself from these samples.
Link.
Karen Mantler - Business is Bad is available on ECM/Xtra WATT 3768680.
Lance.

Down Beat Critics Poll

Check out Down Beat Critics Poll results here.
Cécile picked up 4 and Gregory 2 - well done guys!
Lance.

Book Review: Off Key by Mark Robertson.

(Just a reminder that Mark Robertson's excellent first novel is officially launched this Saturday June 28 - follow this link to learn more - Lance)
The definitive jazz novel, in my opinion, has yet to be written despite the efforts of many well known literary figures. Evan Hunter's Second Ending perhaps came closest - until now that is.
Mark Robertson's Off Key could only be written by someone at the heart of a provincial jazz scene and whilst I'm sure it isn't semi-autobiographical, the characters and situations are so familiar and, occasionally, thinly disguised it might well be. The fact that it's set in the north-east adds credence to the theory. 
Fiction it well may be, but it does relate to life in the jazz lane - The grotty gigs out in the wilds with an audience of three, the rusting band van forever breaking down, the wayward self-destructing genius, the struggle to maintain a home life with a jazz life, the conflicting personalities in any group of two or more (in this case four) etc.

RIP Gerry Goffin

Lyricist Gerry Goffin passed away on June 19. Although a jazz blog may seem the wrong setting to celebrate the life of a pop composer, his work, particularly in collaboration with his wife, singer/songwriter Carole King, contains some of the best examples of the genre - 1960s pop. It Might as Well Rain Until September, Oh No Not My Baby, Will You Still Love me Tomorrow? The Animals classic, Don't Bring me Down and Aretha's You Make me Feel Like a Natural Woman just a few of the many big hits Goffin was associated with.
He was 75.
Rest in Peace.
Lance.

Monday, June 23, 2014

The Allsorts Band @ The Bridge Hotel. June 22

Russ Henderson (tenor saxophone & flute), Oli Cadman (keyboards), Jim Faulkner (guitar), Peter Gavin (electric bass) & Katie Patterson (drums)
(Review by Russell).
Katie Patterson’s Allsorts Band made a return visit to Splinter @ the Bridge some fifteen months on from a promising first appearance (between times the band played another gig at Hoochie Coochie). In the meantime, Patterson has recruited Jim Faulkner to play guitar and don an apron. Yes, the desperate Faulkner agreed to wear the band outfit of patterned kitchen aprons. Only kidding Jim! You’re sure to have plenty of offers of a gig. So, apron donned, would Faulkner peel the spuds to Chef Patterson’s exacting standards?

British Legion Gigs cancelled.

The Friday night sessions at "The Mixer" (Jesmond British Legion) have been put on hold, I'm told, until September.
Audience numbers, I'm led to believe, didn't warrant continuing during the summer months.
Lance.

British Sea Power, BBC Big Band and Jo Hamilton get brassy in the North East

(More info.)
If you've ever watched the Mardi Gras marching bands in Tremé or Live And Let Die and idly wished something similar existed closer to home, then wish no more, because it was right here under your nose the whole time.
This summer Durham will bring a series of shows to venues across the historic city – Brass: Durham International Festival. Running between 12th and 20th July, Brass will play host to an unexpected mix of acts like British Sea Power performing with a brass band and Jo Hamilton performing with Lanterns on the Lake and a brass ensemble and  the BBC Big Band.

Strictly Smokin' Big Band @ Hoochie Coochie June 22

(Review by Lance/Photo courtesy of Ken Drew.)
Even with a couple of subs coming off the bench (Keith Robinson on alto and Bill Watson, trumpet) this was a stormer and the packed bar loved it. Many familiar faces in the audience, and a pair of shapely legs that I was sure meant that Betty Grable was alive and well! Maybe this miracle meant that Harry James too had been raised from the dead and was in the trumpet section? No, the legs belonged to my favourite auntie (not actually my auntie but somebody's auntie) and Harry wasn't in the horn section either!

Sunday, June 22, 2014

CD Review: Northern Monkey Brass Band – High on Life

Graham Hardy (trumpet), Alastair Lord (trumpet), Jamie Toms (tenor saxophone), David Gray (trombone),  Mark Ferris (trombone), Phil Rosier (tuba), Nik Alevroyiannis (snare drum) & Brendan Murphy (bass drum)
(Review by Russell).
High on Life is the recording debut of the majestic Northern Monkey Brass Band. Trumpeter Graham Hardy has assembled some of the finest brass players and percussionists to play a music that never fails to move body and soul. The best of American street bands – from the Dirty Dozen Brass Band to the Youngblood Brass Band – the inspiration, Hardy has taken a people’s music of the early twentieth century and given it a twenty first century twist.   

CD Review: Fred Hersch Trio – Floating.

 Fred Hersch(pno); John Hebert (bass); Eric McPherson (dms).
(Review by David Brownlow).
This is the first Fred Hersch Trio studio album in four years after a series of “live” sessions featuring the same personnel.  A fine player, influenced by some of the “greats” – Evans, Peterson, & Jamal among them, Hersch has evolved his own style which is highly technical, imaginative, searching, emotional and inspiring. The CD follows the typical pattern of a Hersch Trio set when the opener is a standard, followed by some original music, then a ballad from the GAS book and finally ending with a Monk piece.

Jazz Co-op Receives Parliamentary Approval!

Chi Onwurah, MP for Newcastle Central visited the Jazz Cooperative pub, The Globe, as part of this year's Cooperatives Fortnight.
The cooperatively owned pub is set to open on July 18 with an all-night party (or should that be "sitting") featuring the Strictly Smokin' Big Band, poet John Challis and a jazz funk DJ.
Jazz loving Ms Onwurah, caught on camera (by Ken Drew) and flanked by four Co-op members spoke enthusiastically about the venture and the progress made in the pub's refurbishment promising to attend as and when her parliamentary schedule allowed. 
Lance.

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Ruth Lambert sings the Great North Songbook @ The Jazz Café. June 20

Ruth Lambert Trio: Ruth Lambert (vocals), Giles Strong (guitar) & Mick Shoulder (double bass)
(Review by Russell).
No Moon at All, I’ve Got the World on a String, Ruth Lambert had the audience wrapped around her little finger. And what an audience! ‘Bijou’ said Lambert, ‘select’, but how attentive, hanging on every note. ‘Nowhere to hide’ confessed our Songbook Superstar.
Those Great North songwriters Lambert, Shoulder and Strong previewed material from a soon-to-be-released first album: Love That Never Dies (comp. Lambert), Everything Was Beautiful (comp. Strong), How Could I? (comp. Shoulder), So Tell Me and Lullaby. All stood comparison with more familiar GAS Book favourites including Time After Time, Beautiful Love (Lambert toying with the lyric), Taking a Chance on Love and one of Lambert’s signature songs - Skylark.

A Sun Ra Solstice

Tune in to BBC 6 Music, 3:00 pm, Saturday 21 June – the Summer Solstice – as Gilles Peterson has a Sun Ra special. At midnight Stuart Maconie’s Freakier Zone features Hermeto Pascoal.
On Sunday 22 the Beeb offers you another chance to hear trumpeter Hugh Masekela in conversation with Michael Berkeley – Private Passions, Radio 3 – playing some of his favourite music including Satchmo, Lady Day, Ol’ Blue Eyes and that imperious improviser JS Bach (12 noon).

Monday, 10:00 pm, over on Radio2 the documentary Kalamazoo Gals promises to be fascinating listening. Wartime production of guitars – made by an all female workforce! Over on Radio 3 at eleven o’clock Jazz on 3 broadcasts a concert from Café Oto featuring Barry Guy’s New Orchestra.       
Russell.

The Kings of Swing @ Sage Gateshead June 20.

Paul Pashley, Tony Benedict, Mark Porter (vcls); Paul Francis (pno); Paul Francis (pno/MD); + Wilkinson (alt); Steve Black (ten); Gilhouse ( bar), Benny Lake (vcl/tpt), Adrian (tpt), Stuart ( tmb); Harrison Wood (bass); Bill Johnson (dms).
(Review by Lance).
Apart from the singers, the rest of the names are pure guesswork based on the announcements heard over the rapturous applause from the three quarters full level one of Hall One at Sage Gateshead.
It was well deserved applause from the mixed age audience (the younger ones may have been there as carers, minders, chauffeurs gigolos etc.) and we got the full canon of the usual suspects ie Sinatra, Bennett, Dean, Darin, Bublé et al.

Friday, June 20, 2014

Jazz in York

John Taylor kindly reminded me of this link to jazz in York - http://www.jazzinyork.com/events.
Thanks JT.
Lance.

Horns a Plenty Today

As the reader will note from the above listings today is one of those spoilt for choice days! There's three gigs in Gateshead alone at venues but a ff riff apart! (Sage Gateshead, Gateshead Old Town Hall, Central Bar).
Travel one Metro stop to Central Station and you've got another (Jazz Café), one more to Monument (Hoochie Coochie) or three more to West Jesmond (British Legion).
My personal choice is for Sage Gateshead and the Kings of Swing but it could easily have been any of the others or even an afternoon trip down to Durham (Gala Theatre) or a Rendezvous at the Black Horse, Monkseaton. Or, if it's a balmy evening, a run up to Etal or Alnwick!
We've never had it so good, or is it too much of a good thing?
Lance.

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Jazz Record Requests Pays Tribute to the late Horace Silver

Alyn Shipton will be paying tribute to Horace Silver on Radio 3's Jazz Record Request program - date as yet not known.
Email your requests to jazz.record.requests@bbc.co.uk.
My apologies for confusion over the date of the program - entirely my fault. When actual date is revealed it will be announced here.
Lance.

Rest In Peace Horace Silver

The reported death of Horace Silver last year fortunately proved to be premature. Sadly, this time round, it isn't. The all-time great modern jazz pianist and composer died yesterday (June 18).
Silver, with Art Blakey's Jazz Messengers and later the Horace Silver Quintet, provided some of the pivotal moments of post bop modern jazz recording many albums on Blue Note. His compositions such as Senor Blues, Cape Verdean Blues, Quicksilver, Filthy McNasty and Song For my Father are just some of the pieces that have become part of the standard repertoire of many bands great and small.
In the north east his music has been has been well represented with much love and respect by Peter Gilligan as well as by vocalist Debra Milne.
Horace Silver was 85.
Sadly missed - Rest in Peace.
Obituary.
Discography.
Lance.

Take a Musical Journey With Sage Gateshead This Summer

Holidays at home should be about fun and discovering new things but they are also a great opportunity to learn some new skills and improve existing talents.  Sage Gateshead Summer Schools are the perfect way for children and young people to do just that.  From singing to conducting, creating a band to playing instruments there are loads of courses on offer for all ages and abilities.

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

CD Review: John A. Lewis - One Trip Out

John A. Lewis (pno); Lincoln Apeland (bs); Merik Gillett (dms).
A native of Dallas, Texas, Lewis has been around for 30 years and this is his ninth album. Presumably his main theatre of operations has been in and around the Dallas, Fort Worth area which would explain why he's not a jazz household name in the UK - maybe not even in New York or LA. This is unfortunate as he deserves wider recognition. 

Awards for Cumming and Carthy

John Cumming of Serious has been awarded an OBE in the Queen's Birthday Honours List. This, alongside folkie Eliza Carthy who hit for an MBE, was significantly overlooked by the national media in their reportage - well they would wouldn't they?
Cumming and Serious have been involved in jazz promotion for many years and are, of course, the guiding factor behind the Gateshead International Jazz Festival held at Sage Gateshead each Spring. Carthy too is a not unfamiliar figure at Gateshead.
Congratulations to both. Long may they reign.
Lance.

Jam Session @ Jazz Café. June 17.

Peter Gilligan (pno); Paul Grainger (bs); Paul Wight (dms) + Ian Forbes (dms); Paul Gowland (alt); Kath Jobes (vcl).
(Review by Lance.)
The World Cup has a lot to answer for - not least the effect on jazz clubs. Who, with all of their wits about them, can sit watching two foreign teams kicking a ball around when they could be at the Jazz Café Jam or any of the other jazz gigs around the world that are being steamrollered into submission by the "Beautiful game"?

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Roly Goes "Underground."

Excuse me for a bit of self promotion but this festival may in any case be of interest and maybe you could pass on the info to any friends or relatives who you think may be interested. 
The Mining Institute is in Neville Street, Newcastle just next to The Lit & Phil. It has a history to be proud of. Many of the finest engineers in mining history graced its walls and many of the great innovations in mining happened here on Tyneside. For example Geordie Stephenson's safety lamp, better pit ventilation (John Buddle - Wallsend), the pit cage (TE Hall - Greenside).  

MP SHOWS SUPPORT FOR CO-OPERATIVES FORTNIGHT AT THE GLOBE

Chi Onwurah MP will be visiting the Jazz Co-op to show her support for this year’s Co-operatives Fortnight campaign (21 June to 5 July 2014)  at The Globe, 11 Railway Street, Newcastle, NE4  7AD.
1.30pm, Saturday 21 June 2014.
The Jazz Co-op supports jazz, poetry, dance and related arts in the city. It has recently been successful in raising funds through community shares to buy The Globe, a pub on the western edge of the city centre. It is currently refurbishing The Globe to create the UK’s first co-operatively-owned music venue and jazz education centre. Some 200 people have invested in this unique venture.

Brass: Durham International Festival July 11-20

This year's Brass: Durham International Festival promises to be the best yet with a host of renowned brass players and bands performing in and out of Durham City. Literally every day from July 11 to July 20 many things are happening in theatre, club, church or on the streets of the beautiful cathedral city.
For jazz fans and trumpet players in particular the appearance of Jon Faddis is surely the icing on a very tasty cake.

Monday, June 16, 2014

Debra Milne's Summer Latin Jazz @ Hoochie Coochie June 15


Debra Milne (vcl); Steve Summers (saxes/perc); Alan Law (pno); Steve Glendinning (gtr); Paul Grainger (bs); Tim Johnston (dms) + Paola Torres (vcl).
(Review by Lance).
The big screen back of the stage wasn't showing football which perhaps explains why Newcastle's Swiss and Ecuadorian population were absent although the room was not without an international presence of which more later.
I settled in my favourite seat with a glass of London Pride - described in the Hoochie Drinks Manual as A favourite with Jazz Critics! and prepared to enjoy an afternoon of Summer Latin Jazz.
And enjoy it I did - the Gnomes of Zurich will never know what they missed!

CD Review: Paper Birds - Rallidae

Scott Colberg (bass, voice); Alex Samaris (voice); Angela Morris (tenor sax, voice, composer)
(Review by Ann Alex).
A 4-track debut EP by  Brooklyn-based jazz trio Paper Birds.  Music and words are by Ms Morris apart from the lyric on track one (by poet Johanna Skibsrud).  Lovers of free jazz may well enjoy this, as may do adventurous jazz fans who like strong effective lyrics.  It’s good to hear free jazz with words.  Track one reminded me of performances by The Incredible String Band, cult folk band of the 1960’s, and track three had shades of West Side Story. But really this sort of music has to be heard to be appreciated properly.

Sunday, June 15, 2014

CD Review: Beat Funktion - Voodooland.

(Review by Lance).
Beat Funktion are back! The swinging Swedes who caught my attention last year with Moon Town have moved location to Voodooland. It doesn't matter, the music remains the coolest hippest jazz/funk/reggae/hip- hop groove mix in Scandinavia and beyond.
Prepare to dance the night away to some jazzy modern solos from trumpet and tenor, powerhouse keyboard, guitar and, on a couple of tracks, flute, all played over pulsating, hypnotic rhythms. Alternatively, you could just sit down and pour a glass or three of  Akvavit and let the music (all composed and arranged by Daniel Lantz) and the voddie envelope you.

World Cup Woe

Site visitor numbers have been down these last couple of days - everyone must have gone to the WC.
Lance.

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Remembering Keith Crombie

Beautiful memory of Keith Crombie from 2010. Thanks to Gary Burn for bringing this back to our attention on F/b..
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=13igHhHUVgE.
Lance.

Slowlight Quartet @ Lit & Phil June 13.

Although our review team were remiss in not getting to the gig by the Slowlight Quartet at the Lit and Phil yesterday, this panoramic shot by Ken Drew could not be allowed to pass unseen.
(l-r): The Slowlight Strings; Paul Loraine (keyboards), Ian ‘Dodge’ Paterson (double bass), Jonathan Marriott (drums), Tom Quilliam (tenor saxophone). Apologies to Slowlight Strings for not having their names.
Lance. 

CD Review: Danny Freyer - Must be Love

(Review by Lance).
Quite a charming release, no earth-shattering innovations, no trips to the moon on gossamer wings although Freyer can certainly fly within his chosen orbit.
"Dean Martin looks and Sinatra voice" says the blurb. I'm not too sure about the looks but possibly Dino may have inspired Freyer's two original songs - Must be Love or Else I'm Drunk and Tanked as a Fish, Buzzed, Bombed and Blitzed!Who said the art of lyricism is dead? He also wrote a new lyric to Yardbird Suite as well indulging in a vocalese chorus based on Bird's solo. Freyer tips his Fedora to Frank with Bop Goes My Heart, That Old Black Magic, Lean Baby, Begin the Beguine, Stardust and Goodnight my Love. The album opens and closes with this latter tune which features a backing vocal by Dannielle DeAndrea giving it a vintage forties feeling.

EP Review: Patricia Morris: Between New Year And Valentine

(Review by Ann Alex).
Patricia Morris is a singer/songwriter and also a published poet, and this is a rather good EP.  Her poetical gifts are shown in the quality of her lyrics, such as ‘When I hear Billie Holiday I understand the blues’.  She has written all 5 tracks, 2 of them in collaboration with Bo Hewerdine, who has written for Eddi Reader.  Ms Morris has a rich, bluesy, expressive voice although possibly only one track can really be called jazz, but the EP is nonetheless hugely enjoyable.  A rundown of the tracks will illustrate it best:

Friday, June 13, 2014

Jazz Café News

Friday June 27: Dean Stockdale/Mick Shoulder Duo. The duo, I'm told, played a storming set at Hexham Jazz Club on Wednesday and they will do it again a fortnight tonight at the Jazz Café, Pink Lane, Newcastle. 9pm start and free admission.
Lance.

RIP Jimmy Scott.

High pitched falsetto American singer Jimmy Scott died on June 12 aged 88. Because of a medical condition his voice never broke giving him a unique range that made him an easily identifiable singer. Whether with Lionel Hampton in his early years or as a single working in the Rhythm and Blues field he was immediately recognisable.
Rest In Peace.
Obituary.
Lance. 

Book Review: Laurie Pepper - ART: Why I Stuck with a Junkie Jazzman.


(Review by Lance)
One of the pivotal moments of my life was hearing Art Pepper in concert at, what was then, Newcastle's University Theatre. I was stunned! I'd never heard alto playing like it, nor had I witnessed a person visibly being destroyed by demons and being so able to rise above it. This was akin to the second coming of Christ (Charlie Parker) and I left in a state of shock. The following day, which would be May 11, 1981, I bought every Art Pepper album I could lay my hands on. This wasn't difficult as I worked in a Newcastle music store.

Thursday, June 12, 2014

Jazz North Introduces - scheme for young jazz musicians.

The Jazz North Introduces scheme aims to give young musicians their first high profile performance at a leading northern jazz festival.  The young band selected will get
- a high profile performance at a leading jazz festival
- paid gigs and expenses
- photo shoot for the band
- video showreel for the band
- help producing an EPK
The application form is online at http://www.jazznorth.org/jazz-north-introduces/.
Criterias include up to 5 musicians of which 75% have to be 25 or under.
CLOSING DATE THIS MONDAY JUNE 16!

Debra Milne Summer Jazz Groove. This Sunday June 15 @ Hoochie

The line up will be Debra Milne (vocals); Steve Summers (saxes); Alan Law (piano); Stevie Glendinning (guitar); Paul Grainger (bass); Tim Johnston (drums). Debra informs me they will be playing "loadsa Latin tunes" and that it will  be a bit of a change from her usual stuff.
It sounds good to me!
Particularly as Hoochie is an air-conditioned football free zone!
Debra Milne Summer Jazz Groove
June 15:  5-7pm  (Doors 4pm.)
Hoochie Coochie 
54 Pilgrim St.,
Newcastle NE1 6SF.
Free entry.
Lance.

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

CD Review: Space Flight – Sci-Fi

Anna Edgington (voice), James Mainwaring (saxophone), Tom Adams (guitar), Matt Postle (trumpet), Jakub Hader (cover design) & Radek Rudnicki (electronics & composition)
(Review by Russell)
Sci-Fi is a five track EP with a total running time of 17 minutes and 31 seconds. It is a multi-media collaboration (text readings and processed sounds) minus a key element – 3D visuals. The visuals form an integral part of the ‘live’ performance. The audio-only experience is, perhaps, like listening to a mono recording, the development of stereo an audiophile’s pipe-dream.

Glasgow Jazz Festival Update

Now entering its 28th year, the Glasgow Jazz Festival returns 25 – 29 June with a superb line-up of world-class acts from across the jazz spectrum.  Headliners include guitarist Martin Taylor, saxophonist Courtney Pine with his acclaimed “House of Legends”, Neil Cowley Trio, Jacqui Dankworth & Todd Gordon, Brazilian Hamilton de Holanda and free-jazz cult hero Evan Parker and the hugely enjoyable Ian Shaw & Guy Barker At the Movies.  Visit www.jazzfest.co.uk for full line up.

CD Review: Adam Schroeder - "Let's".

Adam Schroeder (bar); Anthony Wilson (gtr); John Clayton (bs); Jeff Hamilton (dms).
(Review by Lance).
Just in case you'd begun to think, as I had, that Gary Smuylan and Ronnie Cuber were the only living giants of the baritone saxophone playing in the mainstream tradition, along comes this CD by Adam Schroeder that has just knocked me for six. 
A mix of originals (by Schroeder), standards ancient and modern and a couple of jazz repertoire pieces make this a must for baritone players and lovers of jazz without complications.

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Greetings from Manhattan!

Just returned from my Tokyo adventure and soon to be on your side of the pond. After Crazy Coqs July 1 -5 in London --I'm excited to be playing Worcester's premier live music venue Huntingdon Hall on Thursday July 10As you'll see I'm in great company with Cole Porter, Johnny Mercer and these stellar musicians.Concert is at 8 PM. Contact Box Office - 01905 611427 or http://www.worcesterlive.co.uk.
Daryl.

RIP Phil Mason

Sad to hear of the death of Phil Mason, New Orleans style trumpet player, some time last night (June 9).. I recall a gig at the Saville Exchange in North Shields back in 2009 where Phil and his New Orleans All Stars gave an excellent performance. (Review). Also suggest looking out for CD "Swing That Music" one of many albums by the band.
Sadly missed by all in the Trad fraternity and beyond.
Phil Mason was 74.
Obituary.
Lance.

Hot Club du Blaydon on Sunday.

Sunday June 15 - 8pm - £5.00. Northern Line and Blaydon Jazz Club (Bridge St., Blaydon on Tyne) present – Djangologie
The pure acoustic gypsy jazz as epitomised by the incredible Django Reinhardt and Stephane Grappelli is riding a wave of popularity just now. Played well, the music has great charm, irresistible rhythm and delightful improvisations. This highly acclaimed and hugely popular band, in the classic violin/two guitar/bass format, have a national profile. It features Emma Fisk vln, James Birkett gtr, Giles Strong gtr and leader Mick Shoulder bass. (Photo by Jerry Edis).
Roly.

CD Review: Keith Jarrett & Charlie Haden - Last Dance.

Keith Jarrett (piano); Charlie Haden (bass).
(Review by Lance).
An absolute gem! There are many facets to Keith Jarrett's playing and at times he exceeds my jazz parameters which I admit isn't difficult. However, on this ECM duo set he hits the spot like a cup of black coffee on the morning after the night before. Laid back, reflective, he explores the possibilities offered by nine of the best melodies from the bible that is the Great American Song Book. A natural follow up to their previous coupling Jasmine released in 2010.

Monday, June 09, 2014

Beck Hunters @ The Bridge Hotel June 8

Mick Beck (tenor sax, bassoon, whistles); Anton Hunter (guitar); Johnny Hunter (drums).
(Review by Steve H/Photos courtesy of Ken Drew.)
Mick Beck accompanied by the fabulous Hunter brothers, Anton on guitar and Johnny on drums, gave a very challenging performance of improvised free jazz in this JNE "On the Outside" gig at the Bridge Hotel  in front of  a more than reasonable sized and mainly bearded audience.
Beck started the night on bassoon accompanied by Anton using a slide on the neck of the guitar to provide scratchy type noises whilst Johnny assisted with a variety of percussive effects. The number was punctuated with assorted whistles emanating from Beck. 

Gregory Porter to Play Sage Gateshead in October!

Gregory Porter's sell out gig at Hoochie Coochie left a lot of folk disappointed at not being able to get a ticket. I was fortunate, I was there!
Well, Gregory returns to the North East with a concert at Sage Gateshead on Thursday October 30 - in Hall One no less. I'm counting the days already to this unmissable occasion!.
Details.
Lance.

Ann Hampton Callaway - Swing! - Blues in the Night

Sunday, June 08, 2014

Newcastle Community Green Festival Day 2 - June 8.

(Review by Lance).
Yesterday it rained - didn't it rain children? Yup it rained all the time. Today was a different ball game - the sun shone and everyone was happy - at least from the ankles up. Yesterday's deluge, which had brought the whole clambake to an early close, had also left it's mark on the waterlogged grassland.
If you're heading for Glastonbury this was the place to get acclimatised! Those with enough savvy had brought groundsheets and folding chairs. I didn't have that savvy! 
Still the atmosphere was good. Young ladies were going around giving Free Hugs - I took them up and got seconds as well!

CD Review: Tom Chang - Tongue and Groove.

Tom Chang - Guitar,  Greg Ward – Alto Sax, Jason Rigby – Tenor Sax, Chris Lightcap – bass Gerald Cleaver – drums, Akshay Anatapadmanabhan –Kanjira/Mridangam, T.H. Subash Chandran – Konnakol.
(Review by Steve H.)
The title of this album sent shivers down my spine as it brought forward images of parquet flooring  and other equally neat forms of jointed wood panelling to my dishevelled mind. Fortunately,  musicians and music dovetail perfectly in this debut album by  guitarist Tom Chang.

Alex Hutton, Andy Champion & David Carnegie @ The Jazz Café. June 7

(Review by Russell/Photo courtesy of Mike Tilley).
Mid afternoon the heavens opened, threatening to wash away the Newcastle Community Green Festival and local league cricket matches were promptly abandoned. The big gig on the night was at the Jazz Café – rain, rain, go away – and the possibility of a no-show crossed the mind with musicians and audience stranded, awaiting the emergency services to rescue them from rooftops, north, south, east and west.
An hour or so ahead of gig time the rain stopped – from deluge to bone dry in no time. In the Jazz Café an on loan Gretsch drum kit was being assembled (thanks to loanee Mr Eric Stutt). Short-notice dep bass player Andy Champion was on the premises and Edinburgh-based drummer David Carnegie (once of the Parish of Tyneside) would soon arrive. DC walked into the Caff  smiling, unfailingly polite, one hell of a drummer. The trio’s pianist – Alex Hutton – breezed in, renewing acquaintance with DC and meeting up with AC for a first gig together with this line-up.

CD Review: The Lindsay Hannon Plus – The Spy (Take 2)

Lindsay Hannon (vocals), James Harrison (piano), John Pope (double bass) & Tom Chapman (drums)
(Review by Russell).
The Lindsay Hannon Plus’ debut CD – The Spy – grabs the attention from the first note of the eponymous opening track. Vocalist Lindsay Hannon’s phrasing is second to none and this ‘live’ recording is of exceptional quality. Hannon’s regular working band gives nothing less than a five star performance on all of the album’s twelve tracks. There is a wide range of material including Hannon favourites Jim Morrison and Joni Mitchell, a brace of jazz standards and a joyous take on Paul Simon’s Diamonds.  

Gavin Lee's Dixieland Band @ Ashington Jazz Club June 4.

Gavin Lee (Clarinet), Don Fairley (Trombone), Al Langthorn (keyboard), Tom Derbyshire (D.Bass), Jimmy "Stix" Robinson (Drums).
(Review/photo by Peter S.)
The June evening began with a dedication to the memory of Ron Pollard, a friend to many N.E. musicians and also AJC when he and his wife would visit and danced to the music they loved. He will be sadly missed by the members.

Saturday, June 07, 2014

Peter Gilligan & Friends @ The British Legion, West Jesmond. June 6

Peter Gilligan (piano), Paul Grainger (double bass), Jeff Armstrong (drums) & Michael Lamb (trumpet & flugelhorn)
(Review by Russell).
Is there music on tonight? Aye, came the reply. Oh, my Gawd! the despairing response. So said one club regular to another. Things looked promising then! This being D Day, a gig at the British Legion could see an invasion of jazz fans. Alas, they were on the beaches.
The small, comfortable lounge welcomed the Home Guard – a couple here, a solitary soul there, awaiting news of the day’s action down on the beaches (Long Sands, Tynemouth).

Johnny Deps in Crook - Paul Edis Sextet @ St. Cuthbert’s Centre, Crook, Friday June 6.

Paul Edis (Piano), Mick Shoulder (Bass), Adam Sinclair (Drums), Graeme Wilson (Tenor/Baritone Sax), Chris Hibbard (Trombone) and Johnny Dunn (Trumpet and Flugelhorn).
(Review/photo by Jerry)
“7.30 p.m., summer sun (about time) streams through the high window, nibbles are on the tables, bottled ales are flowing and a chattering Crook crowd thinks they are in for a great evening. Adam’s drums rip into Administrate This, the chattering stops and the crowd KNOW they are in for a great evening! “
 I wrote the above exactly one year ago but I make no apology for recycling it. Johnny Dunn again graced the front line, so it all still applies.

Urgent Warning For Jazzers! - Folk Music Alert

(By Ann Alex).
Jazzers should be warned that there’s lots of folk music on at Sage Gateshead today (Saturday June 7) as it’s the 24 Hours-of-Folk, a world record attempt folk session, from 10am Saturday morning until 10am on Sunday.  It starts with the Unthanks and a student band, The Teacups, and other folkies eg myself, have been sponsored to help out so that the music is continuous.  Many well known folk musicians will be performing, such as Alistair Anderson, and Taffy Thomas, who is a storyteller.  The aim is to raise money for Sage Gateshead, which is suffering from funding cutbacks.

Friday, June 06, 2014

Jazz North East and Splinter Hit the Jackpot

Jazz Services and PRSF have announced the winners of this years Jazz Promoter Awards. The awards, split into two categories - up to £2,000 for established promoters and up to £500 for fledgling promoters - who support the work of jazz venues in the UK.
This year, seven of the winners come from the North of England: 
Freedom Principle (Manchester)
Jazz at Heart (Leeds)
Jazz at the Lescar (Sheffield)
Jazz North-East
Seven Jazz (Leeds)
Sheffield Jazz
Splinter Jazz (Newcastle)
The full list of winners can be seen on the 
JazzServices website. Congratulations to all of the winners!

Mercedes Menz in Top Gear @ ICMuS Preview. June 5

Musicians from the International Centre for Music Studies (aka the music department) at Newcastle University took advantage of a glorious summer’s day to promote next week’s ICMuS Summer Music Festival with a series of performances on an outdoor stage set up outside Armstrong Building (conveniently next to the bar in the Students’ Union).
An ad hoc jazz quintet – Mercedes Menz – assembled under an awning to escape a baking sun, a pleasant change to sheltering from the rain! Led by a final year soon-to-graduate reeds player by the name of Mercedes Philips, the ensemble name couldn’t be more appropriate! Her all-male band mates (keyboards, guitar, double bass and drums) study across the spectrum – classical, folk, jazz – and with the stress of exams behind them they played without a care in the world. Oh, to be a student!
The ICMuS Summer Festival runs from June 9-13. All performances are in King’s Hall with free admission to lunchtime sessions (1:00 pm). Admission to evening concerts (7:30 pm) will be by payment at the door.
For further information visit www.icmusmusicfestival.co.uk  
Russell.

Phil Robson Organ Trio @ The Lit and Phil, Newcastle. June 5

Phil Robson (gtr); Ross Stanley (Hammond); Gene Calderazzo (dms).
(Review by Lance/Photos courtesy of Ken Drew.)
This was a blast! Three superb players bringing the organ trio into the 21st century.
Loved every minute of it and yet...
The sound could have been better, I felt that if the trio had set up at the top of the rectangular room rather than on the side the projection would have been greater. Maybe.
Ross Stanley's a superb player but I despaired at seeing the pedal-board semi redundant. Admittedly he played some effective bass lines with his left hand but nothing can compare to an organist dancing on the pedals whilst blowing up a Force 9 on the keys.
Robson was cool and melodic making runs many players could only dream about.
Calderazzo? They don't come any better! Every tub-thumper in town should have been here; worshipping, scrapping for crumbs from the great man's table.
He kicked ass from here to breakfast time!  No chance to coast with this guy around.
I didn't count bums but JNE deserved a bigger turn out for such a quality ensemble.
One day perhaps...
Ken Drew Photos.
Lance.

Durham University Big Band Gig Preview

Durham University Big Band return home from their national competition win with a one-off performance in University College's Fellows Garden. This is a perfect picnic opportunity and the band are combining their winning repertoire with a special set from the Invitations, a regular fixture on Durham's bar scene. It's Pimm's season so we have a bar on site so there's no need to bring your own. As usual, the band's repertoire covers everything from jazz standards to more modern tunes and specially commissioned arrangements. Don't miss this chance to see Durham's most decorated jazz ensemble live before they head to London for a sold-out gig at Pizza Express Jazz Club and open the Manchester Jazz Festival this summer!
The gig is on  Friday 13th June in Fellows Garden, University College, Durham and starts at 7PM. Tickets are on the door, £6 for adults, £5 for concessions and  £4 for DUMS members or you can purchase a family ticket for £20. The event will be cancelled should the weather be unfavourable (how could it be on Friday the Thirteenth?) 
On the day, check links below - we should have a call made by 5pm.
Luke Bentley.

Thursday, June 05, 2014

Bloozeburn @ the Ouseburn @ The Tyne Bar. June 4

(Review by Russell).
Walkin’ the Dog down by the Ouseburn, the Tyne Bar’s Bloozeburn session got off to a slow start. Marshall stacks in place, we were waiting on a drum kit. The usual range of Wylam Brewery beers lined the bar, Wylam Bitter as good as any. Sudden activity – the drum kit had arrived.
The tight house band – guitar, bass and drums – ripped into a wailing voodoo man set of Chicago blues (amps turned up way in excess of 10). Altoist Andy Lee blew hard trying to make himself heard. Blues boys listened. Foxy ladies played it cool. A couple (student types) swigged something insipid from 330m bottles, iTexting frantically in an iWorld of their own. After thirty minutes or so the band left the stage, inviting Steve Dixon (battle-worn Strat in hand) and friends to take it on. A big man, the bearded Dixon turned it up – he likes to play it loud, Voodoo Chile loud. What a player!

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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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