Friday, December 21, 2012

The LAST LAST Jazz Blog before Christmas.

Is just a thank you and a comment about last nights Hedsor Jazz Christmas Party.

 Some of the audience

First, thank you to the audience, who turned out in very appreciable numbers. Most of you we have seen before, one or two were new. I hope you enjoyed the evening, and do, please, come again. We want to build on the success that Hedsor Jazz has become. We are beginning to attract the best of the best local jazz musicians, but we do need consistent numbers to invite them to come more often.

Secondly a “thank you” to all who helped on the night. The table placers, the food preparers, the candle lighters, the clearers up, the bar staff. It was a magical night and without your help it couldn’t have happened.

 Gill Cook, with Ken Rankine and Martin Hart

Willie Garnet
Stuart Henderson with Mike Wills

Thirdly our guest musicians. Gill Cook, Willie Garnet, Stuart Henderson, Ken McCarthy (almost a band member now) all played superbly well. Our headlined guests, Gill and Willie must come again, PLEASE!

Clive, Mike, Ken and Martin

Lastly, our regular Clive Burton Quintet. They sounded superb. They come every week, they keep the flame of live jazz at Hedsor alive. Long may it be so.

So to all, may the excitement of the night carry you into 2013.

Hedsor Jazz meets again on Thursday January 3rd 2013. I hope we will see you all there.

Happy Christmas everyone.


Tuesday, December 18, 2012

A last bit of blogging before Christmas.

Just a few last minute words to get you ready for The season of parties, good food and good jazz. Yes, I do mean it’s Christmas Time AGAIN. And of course you can get all of the above in one swoop by coming out to Hedsor Jazz’s Christmas Party on Thursday this week.

1. It’s a Party,

2. There will be buffet Food,

3. You will have the extended Clive Burton Quintet to listen to.

Extended? Yes, Singer Gill Cook and saxophonist Willie Garnet will be added into the ensemble. And being as it’s a party, probably some other guest musicians as well!!

 Gill Cook

Tickets are £10 each, there are a few left, so go on, have yourself a Merry Little Christmas, and start at Hedsor Social Club on December 20th!

For those of you who rely on Sat Nav, the post code for the Hedsor Social Club is SL8 5ES 

CD’s Listened to this past few days.

 All the Album Covers!!

Back in the early 1970’s we had got over the Trad versus Mod frictions, because there was a whole new lot of frictions developing. Was modern Jazz (Bop) degenerating into Rock? Or was Rock maturing into Modern Jazz (in a tank top)?

Producer Creed Taylor decided that whatever you call in, it was worth having his label record it, and CTI records was launched. And thank goodness he did us that favour. Most jazz fans have heard some of his recordings, some of us have some of them in original LP version. Names like Stanley Turrentine, Ron Carter, Chet Baker, Freddie Hubbard and Gerry Mulligan are all to be found on CTI covers. I have just acquired a 4 CD set commemorating the launch of that label, and there are some excellent tracks to be found within the LP sized book that contains the CD’s. You can get yourself a copy (maybe even in time for Christmas) from Amazon for about £30. There are 39 tracks in all, beautifully reworked for CD. Most of the individual CD’s are also still available, I picked up one I missed first time around (Beyond the Blue Horizon: George Benson) this week for around £5 including P&P!

The 4 CD collection, illustrated above, is called CTI Records: "The Cool Revolution". It's on Masterworks Jazz 88697 76821 2

If you are unable to come to our party on Thursday may I take this opportunity of wishing you all a very happy Christmas time.

There was no room for them at the Inn

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Big Room Jazz

Just to remind you that we have another Hedsor Jazz evening tomorrow night, and again we will be in the big room. Do keep the numbers up, and dont forget to buy your ticket for the following weeks Christmas Party on December 20th. They are still only £10 each, and it should be a wonderful night with great music and great Christmas Buffet food.

Tomorrow night it will be our “regular” Clive Burton Quintet, all for £6 entry AND you get the chance to win one of our unique raffle prizes. Many people only come for those alone!!

It has been pointed out that we have the opportunity in the big room of eating food from a table!! Sarah Bason, Hedsor Club Steward, will be happy to provide plates and cutlery if you wish to bring take away food in with you from Bourne End. There is a Fish and Chip shop and numerous other food types available in The Parade at Bourne End. The email from Sarah says 

You can pre order the fish and chips and get some one to go and collect it from the shop in the parade at Bourne end - the place is called SMILES.
On Thursday there will just be me working so I will have nobody to go and collect - I am happy to supply some plates, condiments, and cutlery - if you could let me know possible numbers.
There are local pizza and chinese places that will deliver. And of course I am happy for anyone to bring there own food with them. The kitchen facilities at the club only extend to a microwave.

If you are interested in this idea do let Sarah know of your plate requirement:

Ken Rankine, hiding behind a microphone, 
and one of this years party guests, Willy Garnet

I think we were all greatly encouraged by last weeks Big Room event, I heard no negative comments about it, and quite a number of positives. So, dont let us down this week, and certainly we want the place full for our Christmas Jazz party on December 20th, which just happens to be our regular bass player Ken Rankine's 70th Birthday as well.


Saturday, December 01, 2012


On December 20th, as on any other Big Jazz Night at The Hedsor Social Club, we will be in the Club’s Big Room, not the small bar. It will be a great night, with great music and great food.

Last Years Christmas Jazz Party at Hedsor

It has become apparent over the last few months that the Hedsor staff would rather have our Thursday jazz nights held in the large room, leaving the small bar for members only, and not have it hired out as now to Hedsor jazz (we do pay to hire the bar).

With Christmas nearly upon us, Hedsor Club have asked us to leave the bar for the big room in order for them to put up a large Christmas tree in the bar. This will give us an opportunity to try out the big room for our usually smaller Thursday night numbers over the next two weeks. We have been given some assurance that we will be allowed back into the bar again after Christmas.

In order to make the most of our presence in the bigger room over the next two weeks, it would be a great advantage if a few more Hedsor Jazz fans turned out on Thursday evenings to help us take up the space!! Next week, it will be almost our regular Clive Burton Quintet but with Ken McCarthy at the keyboard, so the music wont be a hardship!

The new team in charge of the bar arrangements at Hedsor are attempting to lift the finances of the club by opening every night of the week, and have made efforts to rearrange the furniture in the members bar to accommodate their new bar trade. This has made it less comfortable for our jazz nights, as the furniture has to be rearranged just for us every week.

We have been assured that we are welcome a The Hedsor Social Club “for the foreseeable future”, but if we are to remain there, we may have to use the bigger room on a permanent basis. This could have the advantage of allowing growth past the 30 max persons that we can currently get into the bar (the seating capacity in the bar has now gone down anyway). If we can attempt to fill the big room on a more regular basis, then we will be able to invite more guest musicians, you know, the ones that have a bigger price ticket. BIG Names on adverts will help to swell our own membership and enhance our already solid jazz reputation.

I have explained to Hedsor Club’s new steward Sarah that it would be my ambition to help to turn The Hedsor Social Club into a venue recognised for its music, not only just for its jazz, and if we (Hedsor Jazz) could cooperate with Hedsor Club in advertising and promotion, this could be an achievable objective. Ronnie Scott’s is now full most nights, and we have cheaper entrance fee and no car parking problems! As Hedsor Club already runs a Rock evening once a month, and I feel there is space for all of us.

In the meantime could I ask those regular jazz attendees who are already Hedsor Social Club members as well to renew their membership this winter, and for those of you who have yet to become Hedsor Social Club members to seriously consider joining from January onwards. Just ask Sarah for an application form.

And for you jazz “irregulars”? Come and join us!! We are, after all, just trying to keep live jazz alive locally!

Geoff C