As many of my readers know one of my hobby horses is to go and see live Jazz whenever I can. Being based in Shropshire this mostly involves going to local pubs which have Jazz nights. For a long period my regular venue was the Harp in Albrighton which housed Jazz Club 90 for the best part of at least twenty years and there were two Jazz club 90 sessions a week. One on a Tuesday evening and one on a Sunday lunchtime, I usually was (and still am) unable to attend the Sunday gigs due to work commitments, so Tuesday nights were my night. Once I passed my driving test I soon became a regular and very possibly the youngest regular of gigs. It was mostly Dixieland and Swing but pretty soon I could rattle off a number of regular tunes and a list of very good ales on the bar. In later years a third jazz session was set up which was independent of Jazz club 90 and was more modern Jazz and was the Brain child of Mike Yorke and John Evans. It was about this time I started to make a log of the numbers played and started incorporating gig reviews into my weekly blog post on Live journal. Later on I started to video some of the gigs, partially to give Mike a presence on YouTube and partially to make the post look more interesting.
Some may think that I was Bananas for doing this but I disagree, as memories fade it is good to have a reference point and it also means that artists will take longer to vanish into the mists of time. Also it provides a focus for me at the gigs as well. For a short time I did write notes on my phone, the advantage of the smartphone being it has a keyboard and could be used for videos and photos, but I became a little self conscious that people might think I was messing about on Facebook etc, so I switched to pen and ink. Also there may be cause for artists who may achieve later success to be able to look back at their humble beginnings, ha never know I could end up in a retrospective documentary…. I can dream!!!*
My first proper account was the 2012 Upton Jazz festival which was a very muddy affair due to the inclement whether. This can be found starting here and be easily accessed.
Both Upton 2017 and 2018 have enough notes and details to warrant a series of posts and I did find some partial notes for 2013 plus the programme so a light report on that could be on the Cards. It is worth noting that the official Upton Jazz festival twitter feed has shared a number of my recordings from the last few Upton Jazz festivals in promoting the forthcoming one, which was nice.
However for now, it will be local gigs being reported on.
*before you wonder, yes I did obtain permission from the young lady and her father to upload the video to YouTube.