Notes on Past Gigs

This page contains notes and thoughts about gigs, written a day or two after the gig. Administrative posts are also shown.

Please click on “Full posting” for each gig to see the photo and full text.

Thoughts on The Gaz Messengers, 11 May 2022

Now, that was a joy! Given who was in the band, it was going to be good, but it was exceptional. Gaz Hughes led from the drums. Bruce Adams brought both trumpet and flugel. Alan Barnes played tenor and alto saxes. Andrzej Baranek was our pianist, very special.  We had a wonderful dep on bass; Mike Reed. It was one of those sound checks where I learned a lot, as they went through the music. They were celebrating the great Art Blakey, and I am sure he would have been pleased with the gig. We had quite a large (and…

Thoughts on Julian Costello’s “Connections”, 27 April 2022

On Wednesday last, Julian Costello (soprano and tenor), David Beebee (piano), Dave Jones (5 string bass) and Eric Ford (drums) gave us a gig that will stand in the memory. Steve Jordan has written the bulk of this post, but I wanted to mention the lyricism and dynamics of all four of the players. The variation of dynamics throughout each song and even through long single notes was remarkable. And now Stephen…What a wonderful gig we had on Wednesday evening and what a pity that more people weren’t there to hear it. I’m not clear why but sincerely hope our…

Thoughts on Elaine Delmar and her Trio, 23 March 2022

       *          *          *           *         *        *        * We had this truly wonderful singer and he wants to talk about the band? Accompanying a singer is a special art, and not every even great musician is very good at it. Last Wednesday we heard a singer with such subtle phrasing which varies in depth at need, and a monster range of pitch, level and timber. The band has to hear that and support  it; a…

Thoughts on Martin Speake’s Universal Connections, 9 March 2022

Surprise! Hans Koller plays great Euphonium as well as  very fine piano. That is, his playing that is very fine, but he does like our piano. Martin Speake brings a band of heavy listeners: himself on alto, Hans, Anders Christenssen on bass and Anders Mogensen on drums. Indeed, this is music that requires listening. It is filled with lyricism and emotion, built on great technique and a band in each others minds. I have no favourites. Most of the music is from Martin’s hand. One, “Balance”, is recognisably based on Parkers “Moose the Mooche”. Our audience are great listeners too,…

Thoughts on Simon Thorpe’s “Jivin’ Miss Daisy”, 23 February 2022

We had a thoroughly enjoyable fun evening with this superb band. I have to confess that with 9 musicians, four of whom sang, there were very many mics on stage. There were a multitude of  opportunities for feedback. An eagle eye was needed on the desk. I did not have time to write notes. So I can’t walk your through the songs, but I can say a bit about the band members. Just to say that I enjoyed every solo and the stunning horn choruses. The revelation was Liz Fletcher. What a beautiful singer: great voice, great presentation, very sexy….

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