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Bebop Spoken There

Dave Douglas, trumpeter & podcaster: “The first suggestion was, “Can you get Kenny G on the show?” And I thought, that would be great. I don’t think Mr. G would do it, but boy, I would welcome that opportunity.” – (Jazz Times October 2015).

Philip Larkin: "Before we criticise the milestone for walking we should compare it with the milestones that stand still" - (Daily Telegraph March 9, 1968).

Today Tuesday November 24

Mosaic Jazz (Playing a celebration of American music) - Bell and Bucket, 37 Norfolk St, North Shields, Tyne and Wear NE30 1NQ. 1pm. Free.
Charles Gordon/Ken Hewitt Trio - Redwood Bar, Vermont Hotel, Newcastle. 7.30-10pm. Free.
Gavin Lee’s Dixieland Band - New Inn, 29 Church St., Durham. DH1 3DN. 9pm. Free.
Advanced Jazz Guitar (Course - final session) - The Globe, 11 Railway St., Newcastle NE4 7AD. 6:00pm.
Inner Space Music - Jazz Café, 25 Pink Lane, Newcastle NE1 5DW. 8pm. £10/£8. JNE/Schmazz gig.
Maine St., Jazzmen - British Legion Club, Jesmond. 8:30pm. £5.

Friday, August 07, 2009

Release Mike Westbrook

Dusting off some vinyl the other day (wife says "You? dusting?) I pulled out Mike Westbrook's "Release". What memories this brought back! For me, this was a doorway into the freer forms of jazz without total disregard to the past. A Mingus like theme, yet with a sort of patriotic Brit. feel about it, the soloists were about as avante garde as I'd listened to at that time - 1968. John Surman, I was convinced, was the world's greatest baritone player and maybe I still am. Mike Osborne, Malcolm Griffiths and Paul Henderson all soloed frenetically yet with meaning. That they were able to incorporate "Flying Home" and "Opus One" into it spoke much about the arranging skills of Westbrook.
In his Jazz Journal review, Steve Voce said, "...Flying Home, for instance, is played with an intensity that makes the Hampton versions sound like teatime with Donald Peers."
Many an afternoon's pubbing with Bill Shaw and Charlie Carmichael was followed by listening to this gem back at my place.
Happy days.


  1. A great record - of the early Westbrook albums this sounds like it was the most fun to make and it's certainly the most fun to listen to. Just one correction: I think you meant Paul Rutherford, the much missed trombone titan, rather than "Paul Henderson"; his solo on "Folk Song I" is I believe the first recorded multiphonic trombone solo in jazz.

  2. You are of course correct re Paul Rutherford.
    Perhaps I'm still drunk from those heady days of 40 years ago.
    Thank you for sobering me up!
    The Westbrook band of the time were the young cannibals of the day. Defying tradition yet staying within that tradition by moving the boundaries - if that makes sense.
    Come back soon.


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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: I look forward to hearing from you.

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