Monday, October 24, 2005

Geoff’s Jazz Nag

Takes a slightly unusual form this week. I am away, and am attempting to Nag you from a strange PC using only web mail, nasty!!

You will recall, that last week you only got my panic nag about coming to the concert at Cores End Church. Well, I’m glad to say, that for some of you at least, it worked!! Saturdays concert was a great success, both socially and musically. Even a small profit was achieved. I think all who came enjoyed it, and those of you who didn’t must now kick yourselves. OK, Yes I know it hurts, just come along next time!!

The music was excellent, and the first half, with its mix of mainstream and fusion music, with Lisa Amato stepping forward on 3 occasion to take the base chair, was very well received. In our audience was Wendy Craig, and one of her friends, Mike Dawkes, of saxophone manufacturing fame. This half was finished off with Lynn Garner singing an absolutely blistering version of “Spain”, much to the delight of Josu De La Fuenta (a cancer specialist from Great Ormand Street), who is Spanish! The second half was dedicated to the music of Duke Ellington, and had Martin Hart telling anecdotes about the Duke, which I’m sure educated and amused all.

So this week, what is there for you to do?

Tomorrow, Century Jazz’s rhythm section play for Singers Night at The Old Bell in Wooburn, 8.30pm start, book ahead for a table for dinner.

Wednesday Lynn Garner and Ken McCarthy entertain at The Harrow up Hughenden Valley, 8.30pm start. Both the above are free venues, unless you eat of course!

Thursday, the Clive Burton Quintet are back at The Hedsor Social Club, maybe even with Clive this week!!

Sunday, Century Jazz is at Fifield as usual (Well its been usual for 10 years now anyway).

This weeks CD MUST be another Lake Records reissue. One doesn’t normally associate Stan Tracey, his big band (with Tony Coe on board) with Acker Bilk, but back in the 1960’s they made a superb album together called “Blue Acker”. This has now been re released by Lake with a few additional tracks of the band recorded a few months later. It’s been one of my favourite albums since day one of its LP release, and I can only say that it is WELL worth an investment to get this CD. The arrangement Stan has achieved on “Stranger on the Shore” is worth the CD price alone. Throw in “Royal Garden Blues”, “Festival Junction”, “Mood Indigo” and another little known Ellington tune called “Lay-by” and you have a musical bargain. If I can get it all to work from Ipswich, I’ll put the cover up on my Blogg.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

In ripping some of my CD's so that I can listen to them on my Creative Labs Zen MP3 player just reminds me of some of the superb jazz that has been recorded for posterity, and is still around to be listened to. Two in particular bring back to me memories of the distant past, but with the wonders of modern technology, still sounding fresh and vibrant.

One of the first lady singers I fell in love with (yep, "I Fall In Love Too Easily"!) was Peggy Lee. I suppose I was about 17 when I first sat in the lounge of the Britannia Arms in Hammersmith and listened to a 10" LP of "Black Coffee" being played on a Radiogram. A really rich sound that was NOT Hi Fi! But the music was! "I've Got You Under My Skin", "It Ain't Necessarily So", "Love Me or Leave Me" all accompanied by wonderful musicians that I didn't know. At the time I was still trying to play that Pure music of New Orleans (Trad!) on a trumpet, and I began to have grave misgivings about my ability after this 10" of black magic! Why, Pete Condoli accompanied Peggy on the trumpet. My mate who played piano and trombone just wasn't as good as the piano player on that 10" either, well it was Jimmy Rowles!!
The best thing about it all is that you can still hear them just like then ( better in fact ) on Verve 060249831935.

Another of the nostalgia that has recently been ripped I first heard in about 1964, here at Cookham, long before we moved here. A friend lived here and played me a tape (reel to reel) of an LP his friend had (yes, illegal even then) of Bobby Hacket and his band " Coast to Coast". Recorded in 1955 (a year before the Peggy Lee), this had Jack Teagarden AND Abe Lincoln on trombones, with Nappy Lamare on guitar and Nick Fatool on drums. Effortless, timeless music set in that old tradition, but a million miles away from Traditional Jazz!! I borrowed his tape, and did another tape to tape copy (very difficult in those days). Back in 1990, I was able to purchase a CD from Dormouse Records. They are unfortunately not around anymore, but I believe you can still get the CD. On the Dormouse CD it was coupled with "Jazz Ultimate" a slightly different assemblage of musicians, but still with Bobby Hacket on cornet, and Jack Teagarden on trombone. Just in case it helps you trace the album, its Dormouse label number was DMI CDX02. Cover art of both albums will be on my blogg later today.

So there it is. Great jazz on CD, but better jazz still if you come and support the musicians who play it for you night by night, week by week

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

The Clarke Boland Big Band CD reviewed below.

Oh, it's Tuesday again, and it's that dratted nag about jazz AGAIN.

Yes, it is lucky Tuesday!! And TONIGHT at The Bourne End Community Centre Bar from 8.30pm, you can listen to Denny Islett, Clive Burton, Mike Wills, Derrick Mills and a couple of names I haven't got in a wonderful evening of mainstream, swinging jazz. Looking at those names, you just know you've got to come!! Because its CENTRE JAZZ with interval snacks, the only jazz event that gives you FOOD. Entry by raffle ticket £3, and you cant even get the popcorn at the Cinema for that, little own watch a film!

Wednesday, a choice! Jazz with Ken McCarthy and a singer of his choice at The Harrow up Hughenden Avenue,


Calling all Maltings Jazzers and Otis lovers, past,present and future!!JAZZ CLUB AT FARNHAM MALTINGS Thanks to all you regulars, and to those who haven'tyet been - come on in - and do bring some friends ifyou possibly can!!Our next bash is:WED 5th OCTOBER 2005 7.30 - 11.00pm ADMISSION £7.00 (CONCESSIONS £5)With the amazing 6 piece OTIS B. DRIFTWOOD BAND andthis month featuring the return of LYNN GARNER withher great jazz vocals and comedy talents - one or twonew special surprises in store!. Great music, friendly atmosphere, and of course theusual dose of larking about.. FOOD & BAR AVAILABLEDO COME AND ENJOY THE FRIENDLY ATMOSPHERE, A TUNEFULMIX OF VARIOUS JAZZ STYLES INCLUDING VOCALS, SOMELIGHT-HEARTED COMEDY AND THE OPPORTUNITY FOR YOU TODANCE... RESIDENT 6 PIECE BAND 'OTIS B. DRIFTWOOD' WITH A DIFFERENT GUEST STAR EACH MONTHIT'S BEST IF YOU CAN BOOK IN ADVANCE (MALTINGS 01252 7 2 6 2 3 4 - BOX OFFICE)TO GET BEST SEATS, BUT YOU CAN JUST TURN UP ON THE NIGHT - YOU'LL ALWAYS GET IN AND THERE ARE NO BAD SEATS!!FRIENDLY CLUB ATMOSPHERE - WHETHER YOU'RE ALONE OR INA GROUP YOU WILL FIND A WARM WELCOME - SO DO COME ANDJOIN US!!FOR ANY MORE DETAILS PLEASE PHONE ME GEOFF HISCOTT 01252 715558 OR BOOK ON 01252 726234 HOPE TO SEE YOU SOON..BEST WISHES GEOFF

The Geoff this time being HISCOTT!! Do all good jazz things come with a Geoff? We will have to syndicate "Jazz from Geoff" soon!

THURSDAY back at The Hedsor Social Club, Clive Burton and his merry men (No I don't know who and Clive isn't on email! so I haven't got his new list of guests yet!) will be back at The Hedsor Social Club. 8.30pm start, good jazz, and as a newcomer pointed out last week, a great friendly atmosphere. We do talk to strangers!

Sunday, Jazz and Food with Century Jazz at Fifield 8pm start.

CD's to look out for.

A young lady new to me, is singer Brigitte Beraha, with her first CD now out. Recorded in Hackney and mixed in Chingford this is definitely a UK production, and very good it is too. Accompanied by a quartet of piano bass drums and saxophone (all names I don't know) you would be the first to by pass this cd if you saw it in the racks, but you would have made a mistake, because she has a refreshingly cool voice, sings some wonderful songs, with a twist on the ones you've heard before, and the accompaniment is just great.Cleo Lane writes of her "If sheer talent were the only ingredient needed for success in music, Brigitte would already be there with the stars. She has a tremendous future to explore, one which we'll be watching with great expectations"

FMR Records (Ultimate Groove) UGCD13-0604

The other CD listened too this week is one from the past. Its a reissue of the Clarke Boland Big Band CD "All Smiles" from 1968. And its still as exciting as it was on the original LP!! Some of Europe's best jazz musicians combined with some of America's best were assembled occasionally and recorded under the direction of Kenny Clarke and Francy Boland. Some of jazz's great names, Jimmy Deucher, Tony Coe, Johnny Griffin, Benny Bailey, and Kenny Clare as well as Kenny Clarke on drums.I can only agree with a line form the sleeve notes, "All Smiles is a first rate powerhouse session".

MPS 06024 9814790

Buy it for the cover alone!!