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Bebop Spoken There

Hugh Masekela: “I advise every kid to check out their past because without a past you are in limbo.” (Songlines December 2017)

Leo Richardson: “I think your image is really important. You look at those old Blue Note recordings and you look at the liner note, the booklet and they’re in the studio and they’re wearing shirt and ties. They used to wear suits all the time.” – (Jazzwise December 2017/January 2018)

Submissions for review

Whilst we appreciate the many emails, texts, messages and other communications we receive requesting album/gig reviews on BSH, regrettably, we are unable to reply to them all other than those we are able to answer with a positive response.
Similarly, CDs received by post will only be considered if accompanied by sufficient background material.
Finally, bear in mind that this is a jazz-based site when submitting your album.
Lance

Today Friday December 15

Afternoon

Rendezvous Jazz - Monkseaton Arms, Front Street, Monkseaton NE25 8DP. Tel: 0191 251 3928. 1:00pm. Free.

Evening

Jazz Café Christmas Party - Jazz Café. 8:00pm. Julija Jacenaite & Alan Law (8:00pm), Mo Scott Band (9:00pm). £10.00. (£8.00. advance).

Strictly Smokin’ Big Band - Gosforth Civic Theatre, Regent Farm Road, Gosforth NE3 3HD. Tel: 0191 258 4111. 7:30pm. First night of two. A guaranteed sellout.

Kentucky Cowtippers - Billy Bootleggers, Nelson St, Newcastle NE1 5AN. 9:00pm. Free.

Ray Dales - Traveller’s Rest, West Auckland Road, Cockerton, Darlington DL3 9ER. 8:30pm. £8.00.

The Standards - Bar Loco, Leazes Park Road, Newcastle NE1 4PG. 7:00pm. Free. South American band playing a Greenpeace benefit.

CoSYJO - Washington Arts Centre, Biddick Lane, Fatfield, Washington NE38 8AB. Tel: 0191 561 3455. 7:00pm. £6.00. (£4.00. concs.). CoSYJO (City of Sunderland Youth Jazz Orchestra).

Smokin’ Spitfires - Platform 1, Station Street, Bedlington NE22 7JW. Tel: 01670 828808. 7:00pm. £5.50. Enhanced line-up (The Mighty Smokin’ Spitfires) with David Blakey (trumpet) & Lloyd Howell (drums).

Steve Bone - Al Forno, 81 Skinnergate, Darlington DL3 7LX. 7pm.

Sophie Armstrong: Jazz at Christmas - Maltings Theatre & Cinema, Eastern Lane, Berwick upon Tweed TD15 1AJ. Tel: 01289 330999. 7:30pm. £13.00.

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

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Sean Noonan & the Suwalki String Quartet @ The Bridge Hotel. November 17

Sean Noonan (drums & vocals), Adam Roszkowski (violin), Afan Asjew (violin), Magda Malecka (viola) & JanRoszkowski (cello)
(Review by Russell/Photo by Ken Drew). 
Odd ball New Yorker Sean Noonan returned to the Bridge Hotel with a string quartet in tow. Drums and strings…the writing had to be on the outside and it was. Noonan wrote the music and lyrics. His storytelling took the form of narration rather than conventional singing. The narrative – A Gambler’s Hand – wove the strange tale of a man trapped in a wall (the wall of the Bridge Hotel, said Noonan). He, the man, broke free and travelled the world – perhaps in a dream, because, after all, he was trapped in a wall. We were in a dream, said Noonan. The audience believed him…well, some of us did.
Clad in boxer’s gown and shorts, the King of Kitsch called the shots, counting in the strings with no more than a stare and a nod. Filigree percussion flitted in and out of the strings, dancing like a butterfly, expertly evading the atonal sting of a fiddler’s elbow. Then with a nod and a stare, a stare and a nod, the man from Brooklyn put the hammer down (The Reincarnation of Several Hammers - John Henry style). The Hub may be in abeyance but Noonan has lost none of the explosive power heard in the NYC power trio’s numerous visits to Tyneside over a period of a decade or so. Razor-sharp drumming (Noonan’s forte) challenged the Suwalki Strings to read the dots and keep up with the pace. The American force-fed them Forced Meatballs – they appeared to like them! The violins did just that – Afan Asjew threw down a solo, winning applause and later Adam Roszkowski went on the counter attack putting his bandleader on the ropes. Cellist Jan Roskowski, hidden behind dark shades, played some dark material, the strings’ secure foundation. Magda Malecka (viola) added tonal contrast, the quartet perhaps heard to best effect when Noonan dropped out. Noonan didn’t sit on his stool for too long, metaphorically or literally. Ever busy, he covered the kit sitting or standing. The comic element emerged from time to time.
A Tommy Cooper – Les Dawson episode (probably lost on the American) required expert timing. Bouncing sticks off the snare, catching them, then, clumsily, not. A clutch of sticks spilled out over snare and toms, the actions of a bungling incompetent. Cooper the trickster, Dawson the pianist, they always pulled it off, the last laugh theirs. So too, Sean Noonan. Sticks gathered up, a brief drum master class concluded the sketch. The doubters were silenced. No they weren’t, they were applauding wildly! Noonan’s big hit – Drunkard Landlady – smeared boozy red lipstick across the audience. Was that a hint of garlic? Hey! Sean, give the lady what she wants! According to the man from Brooklyn she has taken up residence at the Bridge Hotel. Let me out of here!          
(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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