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Bebop Spoken There

Georgie Fame: “Those black American GI’s were just the hippest guys in the world. They’d bring records and of course you couldn’t get them anywhere else.” – (Jazzwise October 2015).

Ernie Wilkins: “If you don't look at the liner notes, you don't know who in the hell it is. Everybody sounds alike, that same million-note approach. Faceless.” – (Crescendo November 1975).


Today Wednesday October 7

Vieux Carre Jazzmen
- Crescent Club, 1 Hudleston, Cullercoats NE30 3OS. 1pm. Free.
Jazz Esquires - Magnesia Bank, Camden St., North Shields NE30 1NH. 1pm. Free.
Jeremy McMurray Trio - Cherry Tree Restaurant, 9 Osborne Rd., Jesmond, Newcastle NE2 2AE. 0191 2399924. 7.00pm.
Take it to the Bridge Jazz Workshop - The Chillingham, Chillingham Rd., Heaton. 8:30pm. £1.
Dave Rae’s Levee Ramblers - Springwell Village Hall, Fell Rd., Gateshead NE9 7RP. 0191 4162630. 9pm. £2.
Tees Hot Club - Cleveland Bay, 718 Yarm Road, Eaglescliffe. 8:00pm. Free.
‘The Big Score: Jazz on the Screen’ - Newcastle City Library, New Bridge St. West, Newcastle. NE1 8AX. Tel: 0191 277 4100. 6:30pm. Free.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Andy Sheppard takes historic Lanercost Priory by storm

Having spent the afternoon describing his practice regime and tone exercises to ten enthralled saxophone students Andy Sheppard then proceeded, in the evenings concert, to demonstrate the full extent of the saxophone’s capabilities as well as his own, not inconsiderable, talent at playing the instrument. Lanercost Priory is a unique building, not only acoustically but also historically, and Andy Sheppard’s solo concert (Sept 12th) was a fitting tribute to such wonderful surroundings. Supported by local trio Hip Graffiti, Jay Myerson on guitar, Katerina El Haj vocals and Laurence Blackadder bass, who performed a smooth set of jazz standards and El Haj penned tunes, the scene was set for Sheppard to make a dramatic entrance. The audience, as one, swivelled in their seats when the first note (Soprano sax) reverberated around the building from a position 40ft above their heads at the rear of the Priory. Andy proceeded to walk down to audience level whilst blowing a wonderfully lyrical improvisation incorporating many of his compositions, particularly ‘Natural Calling’ from his ’98 album Learning To Wave, seamlessly into a fifteen minute demonstration of his sublime tone and technique. All of this without the aid of amplification, such is the acoustic quality of this 12th Century building. Testing Priory acoustics to the full Sheppard continued to stroll amongst the audience for a full hour including a particularly relevant piece, given the surroundings, in Gavin Bryars ‘Jesus Blood Never Failed Me Yet’. Playing a concert that was a fund raiser for Lanercost Priory meant that a large proportion of the audience were there to support the cause and not necessarily because of a love of jazz or Andy Sheppard. Such was the quality of Sheppard’s playing that almost all of this group were completely won over and joined in the standing ovation with gusto. A truly wonderful performance from a musician right at the top of his game – the Gods would have approved! David Gosling

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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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