Trombone With A View

Jazz In Brussels

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Jazz In Brussels When I arrived in late nineteen eighty-nine Brussels was a truly dynamic scene. In fact, I thought I had died and gone to a jazz heaven. The amazing 'Jazz Rally'.  'Brussels Jazz Club' one of the most beautifully appointed jazz clubs in the world located on the Grand Place. Overlooking the Place Fernand Coq the wonderful "Bierodrome'. 'Preservation Hall' home of traditiona...

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What Did You Do In The Trad Wars, Daddy?

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What Did You Do In The Trad Wars, Daddy?   In retrospect, it seems an unlikely scenario. Followers of two distinct styles of music exchanging virulent verbal abuse and in some instancies  this even involving physical altercation. The war between the devotees of New Orleans Jazz and Modern jazz. Long before the famed accusation of 'Judas' aimed in the direction of Bob Dylan. During...

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Racism, A Conditioned Reflex

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Racism, A Conditioned Reflex   There was a time when I travelled extensively in Europe. Naturally my trombone was always with me and I took every opportunity to play with local bands and to visit jazz clubs. In Zurich, Switzerland, at that time there was a very notable venue called 'The Widder Bar'. It was in actuality a restaurant, the owner a dedicated jazz lover, presented jazz in the ev...

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Atheism - A Defendsible Concept?

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Atheism - A Defendsible Concept?   Church was what you did. Myself the small child saying a rote learned prayer for an uncle away in the army. Starting school as five years of age, the reproduction of William Holman Hunt's 'The Light of the World' hanging on the classroom wall. Sunday school every Sunday afternoon. The Cubs, church parades, and then the Scouts with its curious mixture of Ch...

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Van Engel, Bier - Ventieltrombone - Valv…

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Van Engel, Bier - Ventieltrombone - Valve trombone - Belgium - 1910   Valve trombone with 6 independent valves. The trombone is made by H. Van Engel in Lierre (Bier), Belgium. The Van Engel family operated a musical instrument factory in Lierre from 1813 to 1926. This trombone was made by the great-grandson, Henri van Engel between 1893 and 1926. The instrument does not contain a serial num...

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Why Jackie Turner Never Became A World C…

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Why Jackie Turner Never Became A World Champion   My primary school was a curious and perhaps unique mix of children. Most of the pupils came from working class families - yes they could be precisely defined at that juncture - however a significant number were children from Jewish families. Some shared the same socio-economic profiles as the majority of children, however, significant percen...

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A Touch Of The Red

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A Touch Of The Red   Many years ago I lived in small village in England. Every Friday evening I would go to a popular local pub. Frank and Ann were very particular about who they would welcome into their arena of hospitality. The bar, just one room, resembled the lounge of a private rather than a public house and the appropriate standards of personal conduct were assumed. Key to the popular...

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Sandy Brown. The Prague Jazz Festival 19…

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How Little, People Take Note of History   Clarinettist, Sandy Brown was that rarity, an authentic and original voice.   Brown was born of Scottish parents in Izatnagar, Uttar Pradesh, India, where his father was a railway engineer. In the early 1930s, the family relocated to Edinburgh, Scotland, where Brown was later educated at the Royal High School.[1] He taught himself clarinet fr...

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Talent - Where does it come from

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Talent - Where does it come from   Chinese Opera   Looking on YouTube at Chinese Opera I came a across a truly astonishing video of the seven year old Taoyang Wang. Even if you are not familiar with Chinese Opera - maybe you find it difficult to like or appreciate - you would still be impressed by the effortless virtuosity of this small boy.   How does, one might ask, a smal...

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Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy

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Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy   The 1979 BBC adaptation of John Le Carré’s novel mystified a nation – but also featured one of the greatest performances ever seen on the small screen. The Guardian.   Why was this classic series thought to be so impenetrable, mysterious beyond comprehension, and even boring? I myself never found it to be any of these things. Over the years I have wat...

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The Music Village, Brussels

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The Music Village, Brussels   This wonderful jazz club has been very important in my jazz life and for countless other individual musicians and groups since it was first opened twenty years ago by the late and much missed Paul Huygens. l'esprit of 'The Music Village' has been continued by Paul's widow Lucie Saeys.   The current situation in this virus inflicted world is dire. I have ...

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Pre-Chewed - Easy To Swallow

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Pre-Chewed - Easy To Swallow   Easy listening. What is its function? The first food given to babies following on from an exclusive diet of milk is normally some smooth and macerated mélange that will slip down easily. Though one has to admit that these preparations do at least have the virtue of being nutritious. Easy listening - slips down easily - but in general lacks the nutritional ele...

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Simple Isn't Easy

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Simple Isn't Easy   The late Red Mitchell composed and penned the lyrics for a song entitled 'Simple Isn't Easy" the title track of an album of the same name.    Red was a man who knew a thing or to about jazz. For there exists in the mind of those aspiring - or those perhaps wanting to aspire - the delusion that Simple = Easy.   Take yourself off to the average 'Open M...

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Osmosis - Or - Technique Is In The Genes

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Osmosis - Or - Technique Is In The Genes   My good friend Joe Higham sent me the link to an interview with Charlie Parker that had been posted on YouTube. Most interesting because in general not having had much opportunity to listen to Bird in verbal exchanges rather than the musical variety. He comes across as being a highly intelligent and very articulate individual.   What reall...

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Hot Clube De Portugal - Fire Totally De…

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 Hot Clube De Portugal - Fire Totally Destroys This Historic Club   When I put Jazz Clubs Worldwide online some thirteen years ago, the very first club to send me information was the Hot Clube de Portugal. So it is with considerable sadness, following on from a call on Skype from Claude Moreira, that I must tell you that The Club has been totally destroyed by fire. Not only The Club, b...

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Derek Wadsworth

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Derek Wadsworth   A very great friend of more that forty years, the late Derek Wadsworth, who died on th 3 December 2008 at his home in Aynho, Northamptonshire, England.   Derek was to use the old but apt cliché: a musicians' musician. Derek's career started as a member of a Brass Band in Yorkshire and was to develop into an astonishing CV that included jazz, pop music, television...

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The Enthusiasm of Individuals

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The Enthusiasm of Individuals   To paraphrase the quotation 'I have always depended on the kindness of strangers' It is in my view a truism that jazz,has to a great extent, looked for its promotion, venues, and general well-being 'on the enthusiasm of individuals '.   To take the example of jazz clubs. It would be interesting to evaluate just how many were founded and run by indivi...

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Never Mind The Quality Feel The Hype

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Never Mind The Quality Feel The Hype   How often do we hear proclaimed loudly by the publicists, in newspapers, in magazines, on radio, on television " Behold the new Billie Holiday " or the linking of some rather average talent to artists - usually dead - who really were great.   It really is astonishing what hype can and does achieve. Constant repetition drives the message in. La...

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Saxophone Mouthpieces and the Quest for …

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Saxophone Mouthpieces and the Quest for the Perfect Reed   A year or so in a moment of barely concealed lunacy I decided I would start to learn the Soprano Saxophone. "So What" you might say. Well I do play the Valve Trombone. But I must also add that I have always been attracted to the saxophone, but in the long ago days of my youth, saxophones were a rarity. It was a Brass World that I ...

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All it Needs is 10.000 Hours

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All it Needs is 10.000 Hours   There has been quite a lot of comment recently concerning the notion that 10,000 of practice is the formula to a virtuosity that will transcend mere talent. Do you believe this?  I do not. You cannot doubt that such a 10.000 hour regimen will lead to a high level of competence in any field. But as a proven threshold to genius and universal acclaim - ...

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What is a British Pudding

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What is a British Pudding   Most people living within the British Isles would I expect know the answer to this question. Also,  places in world where early immigration has established traditions that evince themselves both in the kitchen and language usage. Any sweet dish served directly after the main course is often called - Pudding - thus invoking the question "What are we having fo...

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The Stonehenge City Jazzmen

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The Stonehenge City Jazzmen Sometimes I have a feeling that telepathy is a tangible phenomena. Ian Maud who runs the excellent website http://www.sandybrownjazz.co.uk asked if I would contribute an article about playing with the support band on a Mick Mulligan Band gig at RAF Yatesbury in nineteen fifty nine. I have been pretty busy over the past few months and thought that I really must get so...

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Fred Burnett was well ahead of the pack

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Fred Burnett was well ahead of the pack Welcome to my world of Traditional Jazz. The pages which follow are a tribute to the musicians who have dedicated themselves to playing the music of New Orleans and Dixieland in the North West of the British Isles.   Although I try very hard to ensure all the information about the bands and events are correct, please check with the venues concerned...

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Doom And Gloom - But We Still Have The M…

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Doom And Gloom - But We Still Have The Music   Reports from many parts of the globe and conversations with musicians give a definite impression that in general things are tough. Fewer gigs. Less money. A general malaise. I suppose it would be naive to expect that jazz should be excluded from the financial problems that continue to plague large numbers of people. Economic troughs - in a reco...

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The House of Sam Widges

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The House of Sam Widges   One of the really interesting features about the Internet is almost stream-of-consciousness mode you can slip into as the direct consequence of a somewhat specific search.   ' The House of Sam Widges ' floated into a view. It was a coffee bar with a jazz club in the basement. I became something of an habitué even at one point working behind the counter du...

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A Joyful Sound

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A Joyful Sound   All too often, when attending jazz concerts, the music on offer resembles an audio chapter of some particularly obtuse Nietzschean analysis. Not that I have anything against Nietzsche. I am as interested in Zarathustra as the next man. However, what I do appreciate is leaving a jazz club on a high.   Mandy Gaines, a singer from the USA, was  appearing for two ...

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Good News From Perth Australia

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Good News From Perth Australia   I received this letter from Roy Burton from Perth in Australia. Though he outlines some of the problems confronting jazz in Australia - also applicable to many other parts of the world - his story in general is very heartening indeed. It does go to show, yet again, how much the jazz scene depends upon the enthusiasm of individuals. Dear Jazz Clubs World ...

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All Blues

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All Blues   "Astounded! is the only word I can use to describe my utter dismay" commented Major Clune-Longbottom (retired) In his recent interview with the editor of the monthly journal of The Middle-Cum-Posmoor District Conservative Association, Major Clune-Longbottom (retired) recounted during a visit to see his niece - up at University studying Political Science. "Not a suitable subje...

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Brexit Glasses

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Brexit Glasses   Want to see the world you prefer to see Be untroubled by logical inconsistencies Overlook the obvious without any feeling of guilt Well you need not look any further The solution that can and does visually sooth and reassure Brexit glasses, developed within our own Research and Development facility, will soon be available to the utter delight and the total satis...

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Albert Was The Reason I Voted Leave

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Albert Was The Reason I Voted Leave   My friend Elsie Cobnut was the first to tell me explained Mrs Doris Outwear of number 64 Buttercup Terrace. She had read it in the paper - the weekly - she forgot just where and when - that the Common Market lot were going to pass a new law making all owners of ginger cats get their pets seen to or be fined. "Seen too. You know that means" she explained...

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Brexit There Was Never Any Doubt About T…

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Brexit There Was Never Any Doubt About The Outcome   I do not claim to be a prophet, a soothsayer, someone skilled in extracting portents from the entails of recently sacrificed bipeds. What I can say without equivocation, I alway knew that if the eligible voters within the United Kind were give the opportunity to vote on leaving the European Union, the ultimate result would be - leave. &n...

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MonoGlot Tours

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MonoGlot Tours   You Will Never Hear Anything But English Spoken During Your Entire Stay - Our Guarantee   Never again will you have to face the embarrassing prospect of being embarrassed for the individual who is unable to speak or understand English . We have all been here. The hotel receptionist. Shopkeepers. Taxi driver. No matter what volume you employ they are totally unable ...

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Google Can Seriously Damage Your Website

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Google Can Seriously Damage Your Website   Jazz Clubs Worldwide http://jazz-clubs-worldwide was created in 1997 and in time became the key resource for jazz musicians, jazz lovers, agents, groups, bands et al.   Eventually it was ranked within the top million websites on the Internet. Hits and pages views showing an exceptionally high volume. Then in March two thousand and eleven the...

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Profane or not Profane

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Profane or not Profane   I recently submitted a promotional video to a social media site - that shall be nameless. Whoever approves videos, and I assume they speak English, however they refused to boost it because "The video contains Profane Language".   Perhaps you might be able to enlighten me? Can you detect Profanity in the voice over?       {youtube}unaULA8rYo...

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Remembering Pol (Pol Jazz) Lenders

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Remembering Pol (Pol Jazz) Lenders   Pol Lenders, whose real name is Leopold Lenders, known for a long time as Pol from the Pol's Jazz Club, born in 1917 and died on August 2, 20001, was a Belgian and Belgian jazz personality who opened several clubs in Brussels.     Pol's memory lives on in a cabinet at The Jazz Station in Brussels Pol Lenders was the son of a...

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Under 35 Likes Jazz

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Under 35 Likes Jazz   This morning I had a sad email from California following on from my 'Jazz Clubs Worldwide September Newsletter' where I talked about the current health of the jazz scene internationally. I quote: "Hello Peter: I wanted you to know, in case you haven't heard, that Charlie O's Jazz Club in Southern California closed down for good on August 31, 2011. You can remove our...

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Under Thirty Five - And Do Like Jazz

Under Thirty Five - And Do Like Jazz If you are in Manchester, England of a Wednesday evening check out The Indigo Bar. 460 Withington Rd. Withington, South Manchester, M20 4AN. Its a delight. You will find a weekly jam session organised and directed by saxophonist Ed Kainyek. This dynamic individual knows just how to keep the proceedings under control in a manner that renders his underlying fir...

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Hard Bop Is Alive And Well - No Need For…

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Hard Bop Is Alive And Well - No Need For An Apology   There is a tendency in some zones of the jazz world to devalue what can be loosely described as earlier styles. This particularly so by a certain species of jazz critic who want to proclaim that they are riding on and perhaps exclusively appreciating the crest of some new wave. Why should we not appreciate the musicians, bands and styles...

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Drummer Moe Green asked why so few band …

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Drummer Moe Green asked why so few band play Jelly Roll Morton compositions   The question Moe Green poses about the absence of compositions of Jelly Roll Morton in the repertoire of the performing bands is one that has interested me from time to time. Let me say that I have a great admiration for both Jelly Roll Morton and his bands - particularly The Red Hot Peppers. Also, the musician...

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Croatian jazz great Petrovic dies at 75

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Croatian jazz great Petrovic dies at 75   ZAGREB (AFP) – Croatian jazz great Bosko Petrovic, who has played and recorded with many international stars, died here Monday at the age of 75, the national musicians' association said.   Petrovic, born in 1935 in the northern town of Bjelovar, was a vibraphone player, composer, arranger, producer and pedagogue.   In 1959 he founded...

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Willy Vande Walle - Saxophonist

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Willy Vande Walle - Saxophonist   I played for more than five years with Willy Vande Walle's 'Jazz Express'. Willy was a great guy but a lot of the time was overwhelmed by the complications of a life that included three former wives and a partiality for Genevieve - a type of Gin that is a speciality of Belgium - so much so that in the small musical instrument shop he owned in the commune of...

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Monday Night Jazz Jam In Ljubljana

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Monday Night Jazz Jam In Ljubljana   Though I have often traversed Slovenia en route to Croatia - my Son Adam and his family live and work in Zagreb - my visits have always been transitory, just stopping to fill the car with petrol, or to take money from a cash machine.   I decided to take a holiday in the Slovenian coastal resort of Isola. My daughter Laura was there for a few days ...

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Real Book and The Smart Phone

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Real Book and The Smart Phone   It has become a familiar sight. At jam sessions - forgivable - perhaps. On gigs - not so acceptable - just my opinion. What am I referring to ? The array of one or more Smart Phones being used to display the Real Book. Propped up on the music stand of the piano. The bass player his eyes glued to the screen. A horn player squinting at a distance.   Wh...

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Four Bar Intro - The Door to Possibiliti…

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Four Bar Intro - The Door to Possibilities   Most jazz musicians - and maybe even non-musicians - will know just how evocative good four bar intro can be. It starts your foot tapping. It attunes your ear to what is to follow. It is the passport control to a musical journey that can lead anywhere.   You just never know in advance. Routine licks. Something special that just appears fro...

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Jazz Festivals Minus The Jazz

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Jazz Festivals Minus The Jazz   Looking at some upcoming some major jazz festival programmes one wonders just what are the jazz credentials of many of the listed Headliners. Rock musicians yes. World Music maybe. Who knows what kind of music much of the time.   The problem is that many of the big festivals built their reputations and the ability to draw in large audiences by featurin...

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Johnny Griffin at The Club 43 Manchester…

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Johnny Griffin at The Club 43 Manchester, England   The Club 43 Manchester, England was extremely influential in promoting the appearance of live performances of American jazz musicians. Up until the later part of the sixties performances by American musicians were very difficult to arrange because of the Musicians Union insistence that there should be a reciprocal agreement: one or more Am...

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The First Valamar Jazz Festival. Porec, …

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The First Valamar Jazz Festival. Porec, Istria, Croatia   Festival Diary 9th. of July 2010   Porec is a town located on the west coast of Istria. Due to its extraordinary geographical position, its natural attractions and cultural monuments, Porec is today one of the most important touristic sites in Croatia. The town which was designed in its current form by Romans two thousand year...

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Jazz Gigs and Where To Find Them

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Jazz Gigs and Where To Find Them   A couple of days ago I was sent a photograph of a pub in Yorkshire where I played with a band called 'Special Brew'. It attracted a good crowd and ran weekly and successfully for an extended period. The band brought together some excellent musicians that included the great guitarist Mike Walker, then in his early twenties, who went on to play with, amongst...

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