Les Bull Band – Jazz on a Sunday
Reporter: Tony Sheldon
Date online: 27 July 2010
The Les Bull Band rarely travels south of Lancashire, but the Mayfield acoustics are first class, and they receive their rightful acclaim from the discerning ears at Jazz-on-a-Sunday, who had requested their return.
Led by Trumpeter Bull with relaxed intros and a smooth style, this band is excellence plus with whiz kid of the keyboards Pete major integrating the texture of musical resonance.
There sets of eight produced quality with quantity, and for less intense traditional interns, the band plays a variety of numbers with popular vocals given their due respect by the lubricated tonsils of Bull.
“Jazz Me Blues” set the gig in motion with a rousing start followed by a swinging arrangement of Ellington’s “It don’t mean a thing” with the power of Dave Lee’s sax and Matthew Woodhouse Trombone and major’s integral keyboards Waller’s “Baby sweet Baby”, new to most ears was sung by Bull with Trombone, and Lee’s soprano clarinet guiding the tune, and Bull continued vocalising with “I cried for you” “you’re a sweetheart “ was a solo vocal for major with some plaintive alto sax, but the overriding pleasure of Les Bull gig is superb musicianship in tandem, and the perfectly times rhythmic drumming of Pete Boocock.
“Sweet Georgia Brown” rhythm driven with solo bass guitar interlude for Lawrence Canty had a front three pastiche to close out the numbers.
The dreamy “Louisiana Fairy tale, blended Bulls soft vocal tunes with Lees smooth clarinet and the band brought up the first interval going “way back from Indiana”.
Suitably refreshed with a couple of lemonades set two fires off with all ‘guns blazing’ to an Alex welsh favourite “Doggin around” powerful trumpet, tenor sax and driving keyboards. “Maybe” found Bull’s vocal backed by trombone and smooth keyboards with a neat duo for bass guitar and drums.
Lees humour (don’t give up the day job) introduced his gentle clarinet solo of “Hush a Bye” with majors keyboard backing in vibes style. “am I wasting my time” brought Bull back to the ‘mike’ before contrasting with the melancholy “blues and sentimental” “Beverley sisters” (perhaps not) sang “want a girl” and Bulls trumpet driven smooth vocal of “stars fell on Alabama” gave way to the clash of symbols and expansive drums expertise of Boocock in the breathtaking “Caravan” with melodic assists to bring set two to a close.
Back on stage, the band were quickly into their stride with an unusual arrangement of “The old rugged cross”, and a different interpretation of Ellington’s “Mood Indigo” with Lee’s “clanking” clarinet solo and major’s ‘key changing keyboards.
Powerful keyboards and soprano clarinet fuelled Horace silvers blues gospel “The Preacher” with Bull adding the lyrics, and Canty’s bass guitar impacted in a slow arrangement of “tin roof blues”.
Sunday sprit was “Higher ground” with bulls vocal faded away for the romantic “give me a kiss to build a dream on” A Louis Armstrong favourite with muted trumpet and melodic keyboards.
Kencolyer’s “Goin Home”, a tribute to New Orleans had the rhythm boys backing the voice of Bull, and the band played out with “Royal Garden Blues” trumpet driven leading in the mini solos for clarinet trombone bass guitar, and rolling keyboards with Boococks ‘drumtasia’ thrown in for a good measure. It really was too good to end.
Next Sunday 1 August, a requested return visit from Yorkshire’s Peter frank Dixieland All stars. Mayfield - 8:00pm - be there or be square.
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