Summer of 2013 With HSJB
am sitting with a glass of Chenin Blanc in my hand, at the time of the
summer heatwave, looking down at the long, freshly cut lawns at our
home and reflecting on how special and delightful it is to play jazz.
HSJB is a band whose members know each other's playing well and are
really enthusiastic in contributing to the band's success. For
instance, as well as being excellent musicians, they all contribute in
different ways. David, with the best single string solos I know, is a
compere, distributor of gig information and organiser of an excellent
P.A.; Peter leads the band from his foot-tapping beginning to the end
of every session with his exciting cornet playing; Ralph, our drummer
is the best brushes man in the business, ever cheerful and great
communicator with an audience; Neil is a stylish keyboard player and
works enthusiastically on band arrangements. Finally Bruce, of the
exquisite clarinet tone, calm and relaxed, deals with the dates on our
web site. It allows me to stand at the back of the band, enjoying my
other joys for me is the group of 'deps' who are always wonderfully
welcomed by the band. Jack Schofield, just so good; Alan Beecham, with
his Essex humour and driving trumpet; Dave Wearing, Paul Palmer, Peter
Eddowes and recently Steve Lister.
roll in, in spite of the recession. In February, Mardi Gras took place
at St. John's Church in Morecambe. The band gave an excellent
performance before an enthusiastic audience at the jazz weekend at the
Salutation Hotel in Ambleside. It was followed by a swing-dance evening
at Bridge Street Freemason's Hall, Manchester, where the floor was
packed with many under-thirties jivers.
In May the band made a
happy return to the floral splendour of Barton Grange Garden Centre for
its fiftieth birthday celebrations, to the delight of staff and several
a blank year of weddings in 2012, five have arrived this year. The
first was at Miller Howe with its spectacular views across Windermere,
and the second in the splendid surroundings of Leighton Hall. Weddings
at Wray (in a marquee), at the Villa Hotel in Wrea Green and at the
Swan Hotel, Newby Bridge, will follow this summer.
are grateful to the loyal groups who keep jazz live at clubs in Ayr,
Carlisle, Southport, Leeds and Roa Island and give us such a warm
welcome when we visit. These visits help us to continue to rehearse
challenging classic jazz such as 'Fidgety Feet', 'East St. Louis
Toodle-oo', 'Dans Les Rues d'Antibes', 'Riverboat Shuffle' and a Johnny
Dodds special, 'When Erastus Plays His Old Kazoo'. We are delighted to
have been invited to pay our first visit to Boston Spa's prestigious
club in July. We have also been approached to play in a jazz bar in
we continue to look forward to our regular venues at Carnforth Station
Tea Rooms once a month on Friday lunch times, and our new residency at
Bare Village Club on alternate Sunday afternoons, where we welcome our
loyal Morecambe supporters, who include Bob, Rick and Malcolm.
Let the good times roll. Brian Gordon. June, 19th 2013.