The Big Bash at the Black Swan
[published in Bebop Spoken Here, review by Lance Liddle]
Mo Scott (vcl); Paul Edis (pno)/Strictly Smokin’ Big Band led by Michael Lamb/Hannabiell and Midnight Blue/Jenni Pascoe; Steve Urwin; Scott Tyrell (poets).Swing Tyne (dancers)/Serena Cee (dj).
The Black Swan Bar was doing good business, the amphitheatre of Newcastle Arts Centre was running out of chairs, the committee members of the Pink Lane Jazz Co-op were smiling and Jenni Pascoe was poetically asking Who Am I?
This was the PLJC’s Big Bash designed to raise funds and awareness of the group’s efforts to re-open the Jazz Café. To this end, Dave Parker gave a progress report* before handing over to MC for the evening Big Joe Fowler.
.After Ms. Pascoe, Big Joe brought on Steve Urwin who is also a poet and, in fact, Pascoe’s “other half”. Urwin’s contribution included a cleverly worded poem entitled The Bin Truck describing the contents of a Bin Truck – you couldn’t get much further away from being compared to a Summer’s day!
The poets having had their say – for the time being – Big Joe Fowler, who isn’t a blues singer, introduced Mo Scott who is a blues singer.
Mo, in tandem with pianist Paul Edis, gave us a selection of blues tinged gassers opening up with that grammatical classic Is You Is or Is You Ain’t my Baby? This was the first time the duo had performed in public together and it worked beautifully. Gee Baby Ain’t I Good to You?, Come Rain or Come Shine, But Beautiful, Don’t Explain just some of the numbers that saw the empathy grow between the two as the set unfolded. Edis also had a solo feature that ticked plenty boxes – Bill Evan’s arrangement of My Foolish Heart.