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Bebop Spoken There

Howlin' Wolf: “He [Charlie Patton] was a nice guy, but he just loved the bottle--like all the rest of the musicians. He was a great drinker.” – (DownBeat December 16, 1967).

Frank Zappa: “Those kids [US students] wouldn't know music if it came up and bit 'em on the ass.” – (DownBeat October 3, 1969).

Today Thursday April 26

Afternoon

Vieux Carré Jazzmen - Holystone, Whitley Road, Holystone NE27 0DA. Tel: 266 6173. 1:00pm. Free.

Tees Valley Jazzmen - No.1 Market Place, Bishop Auckland DL12 7NJ. Tel: 01388 665533. 12:30pm. Free admission.

Gateshead Jazz Appreciation Society - Gateshead Central Library, Prince Consort Road, Gateshead NE8 4LN. 5:00pm. Fortnightly meetings, all welcome.

Evening

Strictly Smokin’ Big Band - Millstone, Haddrick’s Mill Road, South Gosforth, Newcastle NE3 1QL. 0191 2853229. 7pm.

Maine St. Jazzmen - Sunniside Social Club, Holywell Lane, Sunniside, Gateshead NE16 5NJ. 8:30pm. Free.

Bearpark Trio - Jazz Café, 25 Pink Lane, Newcastle NE1 5DW. 8pm. £3 (£2 student/MU.).

New Orleans Preservation Jazz Band - Oxbridge, Oxbridge Lane, Stockton on Tees TS18 4AW. 8:30pm.

Tees Hot Club w. Kevin Eland (tpt); Donna Hewitt (sax); Graham Thompson (keys) - Dorman’s Club, Oxford Road, Middlesbrough TS5 5DT. Tel: 01642 823813. 9pm. Free.

To the best of our knowledge, details of the above events are correct but may be subject to alteration.

Tuesday, April 10, 2018

GIJF Day 2: Norma Winstone & Ralph Towner - Sage Gateshead, April 7

Norma Winstone (vocals) & Ralph Towner (guitar, piano)
(Review by Russell/Photos courtesy of Ken Drew)
Norma Winstone and Ralph Towner go way back. This rare duo performance at Sage Gateshead attracted a discerning audience in Sage Two on the middle evening of three during the fourteenth Gateshead International Jazz Festival. The voice-guitar (and occasional piano) duo played songs from the best part of forty years ago through to as recently as last week when Winstone wrote the lyrics to the eponymous track of one of Towner’s earlier signature ECM albums.
The evening began with several notable musicians – one of them a supremely gifted vocalist – in the front row within touching distance of Winstone and Towner. A Breath Away – yes, that’s it, the front row was but a breath away – opened the concert, and it is likely those sitting up close would be able to hear every nuanced whispered breath. Towner’s Always by Your Side followed and the penny dropped…this was a masterclass in the making. Towner’s immaculate acoustic (classical) guitar playing would either inspire or dispirit the guitar student in the house, such was his mastery of his chosen instrument. The classy duo introduced Jule Styne’s Make Someone Happy giving it an impeccable reading. It was as if we were part of an intimate gathering, and, of course, we were.           
At this point in the proceedings, the seated Towner declared he was feeling the cold and promptly stood up, momentarily leaving the stage to put on his jacket! And why not?! 

Their set continued with Winstone’s newly written words to Anthem, Towner’s millennial album on Manfred Eicher’s esteemed record label. For the most part, the concert took the form of Winstone the lyricist penning words to Towner’s compositions with the occasional departure to introduce an enduring GASbook tune to the set list. One such classic departure, Rodgers and Hart’s Nobody’s Heart Belongs to Me, projected to all parts of Sage Two housed within Norman Foster’s landmark building on the banks of the Tyne. The Glide from Towner’s days with Oregon followed by another ‘old one’ as Winstone called it, Beneath An Evening Sky, again from the ECM catalogue, made it an evening to remember. The duo concluded their masterclass with a further selection from 2000, or thereabouts – The Prowler – from the aforementioned ECM album Anthem. A most memorable evening. 

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Lance

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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