Thursday, June 21, 2012

It’s about time I did bit more of the little light blogging! After all, I don’t want to make avid readers livid readers do I?

Thursday 21st at Hedsor Jazz we have, at least as far as I know, the regular Clive Burton Quintet.

Just in a passing comment, wasn’t last weeks “special” with Stuart Henderson and Mike Wills together with our regular rhythm section an absolutely superb offering. Please let “Sister Sadie” and all her friends come again! Well done Mike and Martin for the arrangements, I just wish I had brought my mini disk recorder along. Three of the five might have played those arrangements before, but two others were instantly sight reading to perfection.

I’m off very soon for some light training before the Swanage Jazz Festival, so information of value might be in short supply after July 2nd, but I believe that Thursday June 28th will also be by the Clive Burton Quintet at Hedsor Jazz.

Also note worthy is a Marlow Jazz Club gig on Tuesday July 10th. Anthony Kerr, a really good vibraphone player, will be with them, and can be herd by you for all of £7. 8.30 pm start, British Legion Hall, Marlow will be the place.

The Race for Life.

Many of you I know supported my family's fund raising run on June 10th. My son Stuart died of cancer 10 years ago, so this year all of his female relatives ran 5K as a team.

I am delighted to tell you that as a team SACC Race (Stuart Alan Clifford Cronin) has raised over £2000 for Cancer Research UK.

CD Round!
I have played some CD’s during the last week or so, one in particular I enjoyed very much indeed.

How often do we take our modern jazz pianists for granted? They are just part of the rhythm section aren’t they? It’s the guys at the front blowing that attract all the attention and all the plaudits (or boos!).

But let’s just ponder that a moment. Think of some of those great jazz pianists, and the identifiable sound each has brought to our music. Our own Hedsor Jazz has the benefit of 2 superb pianists in Nigel Fox and Ken McCarthy. We all remember, of course, our lovely Zane. Then there are those we sometimes get to see and hear. Stan Tracey, Leon Greening (at Cookham last year), Dave Newton and many many others that we can still hear live. What about those committed to record? Ellington, Basie, Andre Previn, (yes, listen to the albums he made with just bass, or bass and guitar, in the late 1990’s), Gene Harris and many many more too numerous to mention. You would think that there would be no one else who could add anything to the cannon of jazz pianists.

Then along comes a CD (fished out by me from the “rejected” stock bin) of an American I had never heard of (it is probably me who is ignorant) playing with some very talented guys whom I have also never heard of either, on a label I don’t know, but on a recording that is acoustically superb.

Keith Brown’s CD “Sweet & Lovely” is on Space Time Records (BG1132), a French label. You just go out and buy it, your not having my copy! There are 12 tracks on it in all. On some it is just a trio, with Essiet Okon Essiet on bass and Marcus Gilmore on drums accompanying Keith B. On the others he has either Stephan Belmondo on trumpet, on others Baptiste Herbin on alto or soprano saxophone. On one track, they all play.

They play a lot of strong tunes, “The Very Thought of You”, Sophisticated Lady”, What is This Thing Called love”, “All of You” and 8 others, but the pianist adds insights into all of these tunes, enhancing at least my understanding of those tunes. Waking me up to new possibilities in them. The two blowers are good competent players, not outstanding, but very good and the whole is very much greater than the sum of the parts.

Now tell me you have known of Keith Brown for years!

Swanage? If you haven’t booked yet, you may be too late, but do try. Accomodation will probably by now be out of town, but for a wonderful jazz experience, even in the rain, it is the best. is the place to start!


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