Thursday, 28 July 2016

August North East jazz events - from Russell Corbett

Tubby Hayes – A Man in a Hurry’ Aug 14 North Sheilds

Ushaw Durham Jazz Festival is the major event in the north east during August. The bank holiday weekend - Friday 26 to Sunday 28 - at Ushaw College on the outskirts of Durham welcomes some of Britain’s premier jazz musicians together with many of the area’s very best talents on show. Ushaw, until recently a Catholic seminary, stands majestically in its own grounds. Ushaw is worth a visit in itself, the fact that you can hear some great jazz is something of a bonus! Alan Barnes, Bruce Adams and Nigel Price…that’s three names to tempt the jazz fan. Add the erudite Alyn Shipton in a ‘What is jazz?’ presentation with an always amusing Alan Barnes and appearances from Zoë Gilby, the New Century Ragtime Orchestra, Graham Hardy’s Northern Monkey Brass Band (heard recently on BBC Radio 3) and the award winning Durham Alumni Big Band and you have the makings of a first, successful Ushaw Jazz Festival. Full details (there is much more) at

From the Land of the Prince Bishops to the High Seas. Blyth, south east Northumberland, stages the North Sea Tall Ships event over the same late August holiday weekend. A jazz gig aboard a tall ship isn’t an everyday occurrence and the Mississippi Dreamboats board at seven in the evening on Sunday 28. Tens of thousands of visitors are expected in Blyth and the Dreamboats will certainly be flying the north east jazz flag.

The Milne-Johnston Band’s standard will be flying high at the Fox Inn, Hexham, Aug 16. Versatile vocalist Debra Milne fronts the outfit alongside the brilliant young guitarist and recent graduate of Sage Gateshead’s BMus degree course, Bradley Johnston. Admission, as at so many gigs, is free. Donations are welcome, so dig deep. The down beat is at nine.                          

Frank Brooker is the lunchtime guest of Darlington New Orleans Jazz Club (Saturday 3). The amiable multi-reedsman will be working in the company of his Happy Chappies. The well appointed St Augustine’s Parish Centre on Larchfield Street (raised stage and that all important bar) will be anticipating a large turn out to hear a most underrated musician.    

Lee Cogswell’s documentary film ‘Tubby Hayes – A Man in a Hurry’ is to be screened at the recently re-opened Exchange on Howard Street, North Shields. The venue is to host a new music festival and it would appear that the favourably reviewed jazz biopic (Sunday 14 Aug) constitutes the jazz element. A day ticket (there will be other events) costs £17.50.

Four gigs in a day. Up for the challenge? Saturday 20 August, take the Quaylink bus over to Springwell. At lunchtime you’ll find the Levee Ramblers at Bowes Railway. Jot down a few engine numbers, or not, as you’re listening to Dave Rae’s strict New Awlins’ band. Make the return journey to Newcastle Quayside, change to the Ouseburn-bound Quaylink service around four in the afternoon and arrive in good time for the Strictly Smokin’ Big Band’s annual outdoor BBQ gig at the Tyne Bar. A great band, it’s one of the highlights of the year and it costs nowt! Just before seven, jump on the bus back to the Quayside. A rare treat awaits at the Vermont Hotel. At the swanky establishment, perched on high, it’s none other than Zoë Gilby accompanied by Mark Williams in Joe Pass mode. Unmissable and guess what? It’ll cost you precisely nowt! The fourth and final leg of your jazz day is a trip to the Jazz Co-op (aka the Globe) to hear Claire Kelly sing accompanied by pianist Peter Gilligan. Ms Kelly is in town on a flying visit before she returns to the Far East. At a fiver admission you’ve got yourself a bargain. Have yourself a very busy jazz day!

A week earlier (Aug 13) the DB Sound Project Trio can be heard at the Globe. Dave Keighley’s coruscating tenor saxophone takes no prisoners – not a gig for the faint-hearted. Finally, from the power-jazz trio to the Paul Edis Trio. Pianist Edis makes a welcome return to Blaydon Jazz Club (Aug 21) working with bassist Andy Champion and drummer Russ Morgan.

Listing- all gigs Newcastle unless stated otherwise
* lunchtime/afternoon

Aug 1 Beth Macari & Nick Pride* Tynemouth Metro Station NE30 4RE
Aug 1 Lorna Reid Trio Alnwick Working Men’s Club, Alnwick NE66 1LA
Aug 5 Peter Gilligan & Ray Burns Jazz Café NE1 5DW
Aug 6 Frank Brooker’s Happy Chappies* St Augustine’s, Darlington DL3 7TG
Aug 6 Ruth Lambert & Paul Edis Vermont Hotel NE1
Aug 6 Mark Williams Standards Trio Jazz Co-op @ The Globe NE4 7AD
Aug 7 Dean Stockdale* Vermont Hotel NE1
Aug 8 Zoë Gilby Duo* Tynemouth Metro Station NE30 4RE
Aug 9 Broadway Melody* Tynemouth Metro Station NE30 4RE
Aug 12 Dean Stockdale & Noel Dennis Jazz Café NE1 5DW
Aug 13 Zoë Gilby & Paul Edis Vermont Hotel NE1
Aug 13 DB Sound Project Trio Jazz Co-op @ The Globe NE4 7AD
Aug 14 Tubby Hayes - A Man in a Hurry* Exchange, North Shields NE30 1SE
Aug 16 Milne-Johnston Band Fox Inn, Hexham NE46 3DB
Aug 20 Levee Ramblers NOJB* Bowes Railway, Gateshead NE9 7QJ
Aug 20 Strictly Smokin’ Big Band* Tyne Bar NE6 1LP
Aug 20 Zoë Gilby & Mark Williams Vermont Hotel NE1
Aug 20 Claire Kelly & Pete Gilligan Jazz Co-op @ The Globe NE4 7AD
Aug 21 Paul Edis Trio Black Bull, Blaydon NE21 4JJ
Aug 25 Latin Jazz Groove Hoochie Coochie NE1 8SF
Aug 26-28 Ushaw Durham Jazz Festival Ushaw College, Durham DH7 9RH
Aug 26 Ruth Lambert & Stuart Collingwood Vermont Hotel NE1
Aug 26 Anthony Stringer National Glass Centre, Sunderland SR6 0GL
Aug 27 Tyne Valley Big Band Tall Ships, Blyth NE24 3PB
Aug 27 Zoë Gilby & James Harrison Vermont Hotel NE1
Aug 28 Mississippi Dreamboats Tall Ships, Blyth NE24 3PB
Aug 29 Tango & Jazz Quartet Jazz Co-op @ The Globe NE4 7AD

Aug 30 Non Electric Band* Tynemouth Metro Station NE30 4RE

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