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Ivo Neame Quartet, Queen Elizabeth Hall foyer, London, April 16th 2010

April 16, 2010
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For the sake of completeness, I’m including this free gig on the blog, despite Astral’s worries that it might blow my cover as some sort of jazz cat. Indeed it’s true that I’ve been to two jazz gigs in a row, which I’m sure is a first, but it’s also not quite true that I don’t like jazz.

Like all students of a certain age back in the day, I was drawn to Keith Jarrett’s stoner Köln Concert double album and also dipped into his trio work with Gary Peacock and Jack DeJohnette (Standards Vol 1 and Vol 2). On top of that, I like Miles Davis’s Kind Of Blue and Sketches Of Spain, and have Herbie Hancock’s groovy soundtrack to Blow Up. Oh, and I saw the late great Dizzy Gillespie at the Festival Hall nearly 25 years ago…

I list these not to gain any sort of jazz brownie points – as surely most jazz fans would laugh at my hopelessly superficial appreciation – but because it’s relatively easy at my age to have accumulated lots of different bits and pieces, without having consciously put them together into some sort of coherent system. So yes, I like jazz, but I don’t like jazz.

Back to the Queen Elizabeth Hall on an early Friday evening for a free gig, and the Ivo Neame Quartet aren’t half bad – cool modern jazz, but with real chops. Ivo himself (a member of London’s Loop Collective) plays piano, but I was most impressed by his animated vibes player, Jim Hart, who wielded those sticks like a dervish. The bass player and drummer were fine too, so it was a pleasant way to see in Friday evening, pint in hand and a tap of the toe…

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