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Bebop Spoken There

Jackie McLean: “I can't understand British audiences. In Britain there doesn't seem to be any curiosity." (Melody Maker, April 1, 1961).

Charles Mingus: "It seems to me that if our records were not issued in Britain, the British cats would have to think for themselves" (Jazz News, July 26th 1961)

Archives.

Today Thursday July 27

Afternoon
Vieux Carré Jazzmen - Holystone, Whitley Rd., nr. Newcastle NE27 0DA. 1:oopm. Free.
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Tyne Valley Jazzmen - No 1 Champagne Bar, 1 Market Place, Bishop Auckland DL4 7 NJ 12:30pm. Free.
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Evening.
Strictly Smokin' Big Band - The Millstone, Haddricks Mill Rd., South Gosforth NE3 3DB. 7pm. Cancelled for pub refurbishment. Back August 31.
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Alter Ego - The Globe, 11 Railway St., Newcastle NE4 7AD. 8pm. £5.
Jo Harrop & Paul Edis - The Jazz Café, 25 Pink Lane, Newcastle NE1 5DW. 8pm
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Maine Street Jazzmen - Potter's Wheel, Sunniside NE16 5EE, 8:30pm. Free.
Ray Johnson & Richard Herdman - Prohibition Bar, Arch 3, Brandling St., Gateshead NE2 2BA. 8pm. Free.
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Paul Skerritt Band - The Pennyweight, Bakehouse Hill, Darlington DL1 5QA. 9pm. Free.
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Tees Hot Club w. Kevin Eland (tpt); Donna Hewitt (alto); Graham Thompson (keys); Mark Hawkins (drums) - Dormans, Oxford Rd., Middlesbrough TS5 5DT. Free. 9pm.
Pocket Jazz Orchestra "Jazz & Tapas" - No 60, Arc, Dovecote St., Stockton TS18 1LL 7pm. £10.
New Orleans Preservation Jazz Band - Oxbridge, Oxbridge Lane, Stockton TS18 4AW. 8:30pm.01642 678129.
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To the best of our knowledge, details of the above events are correct but may be subject to alteration.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

CD Review: FRED FRIED and CORE - Core Bacharach

Fred Fried (acoustic guitar), Michael Lavoie (double bass) & Miki Matsuki (drums)
(Review by Russell).
Guitarist Fred Fried resides in Cape Cod, Massachusetts. Gigging musician, teacher, Fried is a busy man with a substantial back catalogue documenting his craft. At school he played clarinet. It wasn't until he went to college that he first picked up a guitar and made the journey from playing six strings to seven to his present nylon eight string model made for him by luthier Steve Connor.
Core Bacharach is his tenth release as a leader. Bacharach. Yes, Burt Bacharach. Fried rightly states Bacharach’s tunes ‘are, by any definition, standards and as such hold up to varying interpretations.’ The tunes are so familiar that on first hearing them as instrumentals it proves difficult to free the mind (if indeed one should attempt to do so) of the originals and their sing-a-long lyrics. Fried cites Kenny Burrell and Wes Montgomery as early influences but it was, perhaps, a six month stint studying with George Van Eps that shaped his ‘conception’.
Van Eps’ pupil got to thinking ‘pianistically’ and with the addition of a low ‘A’ string below the low ‘E’ and a high ‘A’ string above the high ‘E’ expanding the range, he interchanges chords and single line improvisations with masterful sleight of hand. Bacharach’s melodies are made for the improviser. In the company of bassist Michael Lavoie and drummer Miki Matsuki  Fried respects the composer’s work but isn’t afraid to lose himself in his improvisations, secure in the knowledge that bass and drums – the trio is a previously recorded, working unit – will offer sympathetic contributions throughout. I Say a Little Prayer opens the eleven track CD with Fried’s guitar recalling the elegance of Charlie Byrd, bassist Lavoie exhibits a tasteful light touch on the first of several solos and Matsuki’s unobtrusive use of mallets is exemplary.
The Look of Love and Walk on By are given a stately treatment.  An additional chord sequence of Fried’s added to Wives and Lovers showcases the trio’s collective swing feel (tight, fizzing work from Matsuki) and on What’s New Pussycat? Lavoie’s funk vibe launches Fried on a soaring solo flight and the man from Cape Cod disappears into the distance over the Atlantic (the studio engineer’s fade out!).
Lavoie’s warm, resonant sound and Matsuki’s lush brush work on A House is Not a Home complement the leader’s introspective invention but it isn't long before the swing feel returns on Bacharach’s joyful message This Guy’s in Love With You. The set closes with a solo piece from Fried.
On first listening to the CD the thought occurred – is there an unaccompanied track by the leader? Alfie is the track. Excellent guitar playing from Fried. Excellent playing from all three musicians. A fine new CD (Fried’s back catalogue should be worth checking out), Core Bacharach by Fred Fried and CORE is available on Ballet Tree Jazz Productions. Visit www.fredfried.com
Russell.

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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: lanceliddle@gmail.com I look forward to hearing from you.

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