Wednesday, November 05, 2014

Hedsor Jazz this week has the regular Clive Burton Quintet, probably in recovery mode after our Halloween event last week.

To describe Tracey Mendham as a Hoot is an understatement. Anyone who was there will testify that she definitely hooted! The kind gift to her from one of our number of a witches hat was very appropriately worn throughout the evening, and coupled with her red dress gave a very hallowed-en look to her! She is none the less a very accomplished tenor player, with an enormous tone, and I think for everyone there it was a great night out. AND all for just £6 entry.

An additional delight was to having Ken McCarthy at the piano last week. His own feature number of the 3rd movement of Rachmaninov’s Second Piano Concerto was a real bonus, and I would imagine had a number of people thinking “where have I heard that before?”

So this week, back to Bop!!

CD’s Listened to

As many of you know most of last week I was touring East Anglia with my wife June, visiting relatives and enjoying mostly warm sunshine and some excellent food. During this tour I played a CD that strictly speaking isn’t  a jazz album at all. But it was one that left me thinking “what a shame that more jazz musicians hadn’t been put with her”. 

The album in question is the new one from Annie Lennox. I have always been a fan of hers. She has a strong voice, and a strong personality to go with it. Her new album is called “Nostalgia” and has her singing tunes like “Georgia on My Mind”, “Summertime”, “Strange Fruit” and “God Bless the Child” all of which are no stranger to the jazz fraternity. The instrumentation is professional, but not particularly jazz orientated, which is a shame as I think she has all the makings of a great jazz singer. The album, for you to check out, is on the Island label.

My second disk, (but not played on the East Anglia tour), is again featuring another lady. This time a jazz pianist called Mary Lou Williams. Mary Lou Williams was an American jazz pianist, composer, and arranger. She wrote hundreds of compositions and arrangements, and recorded more than one hundred records. Sadly she died in 1981, leaving a legacy of tunes and arrangements that has been crying out to be played again. And the Dutch Jazz Orchestra has done just that. It is a wonderful big band recording, which means a wonderful recording with a wonderful big band. It also has an advantage over many big band recordings in giving up Hi Fi tunes from the great swing era that you probably haven’t heard before. I do recommend this one. It’s been around since 2005 on Challenge records CR73251.
One final comment. Our tour of East Anglia did have some fine food moments as I mentioned above. One of them (a very upmarket sandwich) we had in the small town/village of Burnham Market, on the North Norfolk coast at an establishment called "the Hoste". My point in mentioning this is that they run jazz evenings. 

Do take a look at the brochure I have attached, and just think. We have had some of Britains top jazz performers at Hedsor, including Tina May for half of the Hoste's £12 added to the bill for the jazz! Our Christmas special, coming very soon on December 18th, will cost you just £10 not £50, and will include a buffet supper. Who will be there? So far booked:- Gill Cook, Alan Grahame, Stuart Henderson  "Tolly" and Peter Ripper! and of course the Clive Burton Quintet! Please put US in your guide book!

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