Gordon Bennett!!! what a few weeks it’s been since the Gaffers’ and of course last weekend, was ‘Sail yer boat round the Wight’. I’m still thinking of Bill Withers’ documentary on BBC. What a great guy, great music and quotes like ‘I was no good at that fame game’; ‘down the mines, everybody’s black’; ‘. . .to make the community who made you, proud of you’ and Shakespeare was even quoted ‘to thine own self be true’. I’m still trying to master the first 4 bars of the intro to ‘Just the Two of us’ which is simply divine. He’s one big boat – seasoned, wise, full of interesting nicks and crannies and ideas. His story is inspirational.
(Photo : Ben Hickman)
I had a marvellous time at the Old Gaffers’ Festival a few weeks ago now (I’ve been thinking about boats for a few years and decided I admire them but have not the tiniest interest in sailing them; I love the sea from a standing-on-the-shoreline-point-of-view) and we not only performed (highlighting how good Mark’s songs are – mostly about the sea, liners, boats and all based on his native East Wight)
(Photo : Ben Hickman)
but saw some great ‘acts’ including a fine set from ‘Last Orders’, ‘The Cool Connection’ and a brilliant couple of street performances by ‘Skiband’. I have heard Daz, the suzaphone player before at Beverley Festival a few years back and instantly recognised him and his great, clear basslines. They are fantastic – do check them out if they are near you this summer :
What have I been up to apart from boat-watching? I’ve been working on a Irish tunes book sequel (but with Schott Publishers) – ‘Irish Folk Tunes on the Piano Accordion’, my own tunes book ‘Karen Tweed’s Merrie Melodies Vol 1’ and a tunes book to accompany the Bunch of Keys CD, so that you have the tunes on the CD transcribed.
I’m reading ‘Really wild Tea Cosies’ by Loani Prior as I’m back into knitting and loose leaf tea; ‘Vive La Revolution (A stand-up history of the French Revolution)’ by Mark Steel; ‘On The Periphery : David Sylvian – A Biography The Solo Years’ by Christopher E. Young and ‘ROMNEY DENGE WALLAND (THREE MARSHES)’ BY Terry Hulf.
Can you ‘read’ a collection of photographs (as Terry Hulf’s is)? Or does one watch or observe a book like that? I do go back to it time and again.
Roger Cardinal writes in the introduction :
‘Terry Hulf likes to look on Romney Marsh at first light, before the ramblers have reached the footpaths and there’s only a farmer’s curt greeting to break the silence. . . To know a region well, with the enhanced responses of the solitary walker, is to nurture an awareness of the permanence of a place and the complimetary dimension of change.’
That’s why I like Mark Hickman’s songs – you can hear they are exactly that. He knows his part of the Wight so well and walks, mostly, at first light, with his dog, along the same sea shore and has grown up with repairing old boats and now also makes beautiful violins, guitars and most things involving strings and wood.
Terry also writes tunes (he is also a painter, video maker, tango dancer and fiddler) and will be launching his Romney Marsh Tunes Book in August at East Guldeford, the oldest Marsh Church. Watch this space for more details soon.
Talking of strings and wood, I’m also involved in a team to host the Isle of Wight’s first Harp festival. It’s scheduled for the week of 24th November – I’ll be back with more details soon.
I’ve been enjoying teaching up in Droitwich (I had a break of 3 months due to the old health stuff). You’d be surprised how many people never come to workshops thinking they ‘aren’t good enough’. . . Most people are usually so nervous of playing in front of anyone, they go to pieces and we all, especially me, can still learn techniques, ideas. The point is not to worry about being ‘good enough’ but to soak up info and take it home and try out what most appeals to you. Never allow ‘not being good enough’ to get in your way of having fun (which is what the best learning is). It’s all relative; when I listen to Maria Kalaniemi, Karen Street, Romano Viazzani or Richard Galliano, I am inspired and realise how little I know or can play.
Doesn’t stop me though – my mother always used to say ‘God loves a tryer’ (or is it ‘trier’?). Mind you, she also thought me walking for miles in Joe Coll’s Accordion Band at age 11 with a very heavy 120 bass accordion (twice the size and weight I play now) was a good thing too. . . . .hmmm. . .
Anyhow, The Droitwich teaching days are now going well again with dates fixed for the autumn, so have a look on www.teachingaccordion.com for details. I’m also doing skype lessons so contact me if you need any (via the same website).
I’m also planning a Creative Accordion Day in Bangor, North Wales and another in Frome – check my website for details (the dates should be up next week) www.karentweed.com
(Photo: Tom McElvogue)
I’ve been asked if I would run a 2-3 hour ‘clinic’ on teaching folk music, whereby I give some basic principles of how I teach groups, ensembles, one-to-one and what to do if. . . There’s a lot of scope for teaching at festivals, summer and winter workshops or weekly classes etc so if it comes off, I’ll let you know.
The problem seems to be that there isn’t anywhere to get ideas for this type of thing (unless you happen to be on a university course); tutors seldom have the luxury of attending another’s class and the schedules are so tight that there simply isn’t time to cross-fertilize / exchange ideas. You’re often thrown in the deep end – I know, I’ve been there! The Welsh Arts Council and TASC once funded me to create a manual and series of workshops called ‘Training the Trainers’ which was very successful and Katie Howson ran a similar idea in Suffolk but that was a few years ago now.
Now then, the football is well underway and of course, the cricket! Have a peek at IOW artist Jocelyn Galsworthy pictures :
OK, exercise over – back to concerts.
I have to say that the BEST concert I have been to in years was the evening with Catriona McKay and Olov Johansson at Quay Arts here, in Newport, a few weeks ago.
It was beyond words, really. I love those rare times, when you come out of an event and you just can’t explain how good something was. . .uplifting, poignant, amazing, dazzling, hilarious and utterly stole my heart. I haven’t been to such an event in years and we were honoured to have them in such a perfectly intimate setting.
The next day, after only a brief slumber, I took the Island Coaster Bus over to Freshwater and Alum Bay. OK, so it’s a bit bouncy (we’re talking roads that while they are being retarred, remind me of Ireland when I was about 12 – you needed a Flann O’Brienesque constitution / sense of humour – whereas these days the roads in Ireland put ours to shame) but the route is sooooooooo gorgeous. I was one of 2 people (the other was male) gently knitting on the top deck of the bus and grinning at the splendid views over the South Wight coast. Not a shipwreck in sight!
Patrick and his wife Dominique, met me off the bus and we went to Dimbola Lodge. They were over from Canada visiting the UK for the first time and having seen the Needles, we agreed that actually Freshwater Bay is much more spectacular (shhh, don’t tell anyone) and at Dimbola Lodge,
(Photo : Roger Simmonds)
we not only enjoyed the Julia Margaret Cameron photographs, IOW Rock Festival memorabilia but the latest exhibition ‘GREEN – Regards Photographiques – Images 1894 – 2010’ was simply astounding.
Actress and model Marika Green has put together around 100 photographic images retracking the personal journey of 4 generations of the same family, all of which involve photography.
The exhibition spans the social history of Sweden at the beginning of the twentieth century, through 2 world wars, everyday life and cultural life in Paris (in the 50s and 60s), the fashion world & cinema from the 60s to the present day.It begins with Mia Green (1870-1949) who studied photography in Stockholm and went to live in Haparanda on the Swedish side of the border with Finland at the northern-most point of the Baltic Sea. Her images are extraordinary and superb, covering all aspects of life, death, war, classes and work.
All that remains of her work is 8,000 glass negatives eventually acquired by the city of Haparanda.
The exhibition goes on to show photographs by her son, Lennart Green – so many really great portraits including Albert Camus, Yves Montand, Sophia Loren, Salvador Dali, Marc Chagall and more and yet of the more ‘recent’ the ones these blew me away :
‘News cameraman, Berlin 1946’
‘Street Musicians, Berlin 1946’
‘The Subway, Paris 1950’
Next door to that exhibition is a lovely display of photos by Lucy Boynton ‘Rhythm Tree’ showing the spirit of the festival which is held on the Isle of Wight every July.
And then, fired up by so much imagery, we had Sunday lunch in the cafe downstairs which was yum!
I’m looking forward to a quieter week this week, although I’ve just had the Carnival Company (in Ryde)’s newsletter which is packed with their plans for a Mardi Gras. That is this Saturday – have a look, this company is truly inspirational!
. . . and all here, in Ryde. . . .
Excuse me, but who said this island was a good place to take it easy?
Of course you can take it easy here; a pile of friends and I have just been celebrating Vic King’s 60th birthday – a very jolly event, fabulous meal and even dancing from the chefs at Michelangelo’s Restaurant near Ryde pier. Here’s some clips from the evening (which included poetry, anecdotes and lots of music). Sometimes I think I’d like to organise parties, they are such fun. . .
Many thanks to Derek Farrell (aka Atmospheric Derek) who took the footage. The fiddler is Donal O Riain, our friendly IOW homepathic Vet (he’s treated me. . .) and the singer is Holly Kirby, who, at 5 minutes’ notice, gave this song. She’s just been picked to do some of the supports for the Joan Armatrading tour in the autumn. Fair play to her!
Michelangelo’s Restaurant is owned by Annamaria Sacchini and her husband (who do all the cooking) and I’m delighted to be playing with her as part of Ryde Arts Festival on Tuesday 1st July at St Thomas’ Church, St Thomas Street, Ryde at 7pm.
(Photo by Lucia Para)
The arrangements and voice are by Johnny Sacchini and the concert is entitled ‘Drops of Light – Weaving love through music’. It’s the first time I have collaborated with sitar – Annamaria studied in India under several tutors including Ravi Shankar and she is also a wonderful harp player.
See below for details and also www.rydeartsfestival.org
Ian Storror is one of those people who believes passionately about his interests (of which there are many – much jazz and food!) and on his Jazz at the Albert blog, he not only promotes gigs, tells you about other peoples’ gigs but also puts his pick of amazing videos (you may have checked out his amazing Bill Evans clip on here recently). A week or so ago, he was looking at a new version of ‘Giant Steps’ by Gonzalez Rubalcaba.
Tom McElvogue guided me to compare it to John Coltrane’s one. Cor.
(There’s a great shop in Ryde that sells old comics for £1 where I found my favourite comic of my teens called ‘Cor!’)
And then I found this fantastic clip of Barry Harris workshops gave at the Royal Conservatory in The Hague with Frans Elsen, a greatly respected Dutch pianist between 1989 and 1998 Piano Class : Giant Steps.
And then, the Newport (IOW) Jazz festival is coming up 17th – 20th July www.newportjazzweekend.co.uk
and Jim Thorn’s jazz trio play every fortnight at the Black Sheep Bar in Ryde – lovely bar and lovely music, often with guests. Alan Young played last Wednesday!
Karen Street and I have been working with poems by Sue Roberts which were written and inspired by her interviews with people with dementia. Steve Jinski has also written songs about getting older and being of ‘that kind of’ age, I’m very interested in it too.
John Goodwin (of Bonchurch, IOW)writes :
‘I’ve been involved with some writers in interviewing a number of Island 70+ aged people. We’re mounting an exhibition called Celebrating Older Age with some text of the life story of the group plus large black and white photos of them. The exhibition is at the Community Cafe in Ventnor from 26th June (2pm)’.
I’ll be playing a bit at the launch of this very interesting project – hope you can come along to see it.
I’m involved in only a few music schools this year, Meitheal (www.tradweek.com) and 2 in Denmark in the autumn. I had hoped to be involved with more but recent health issues have meant that I’ve had to take more time out. However, I thought I’d just share with you my feelings about these kind of ‘schools’, whatever time of year they are in. Here’s a clip of a conversation I had with Chris, one of the organisers for the Paddy and Ann Molloy Summer School in July (www.patmolloysummerschool.co.uk) :
And is it me or are people becoming very paranoid about contact? I see so many people handling everything with latex gloves and while in the bank the other day, a young child was tapping on the cash point keyboard while his mum was being served. She scolded him, saying, ‘You know you mustn’t touch them. . . think of the germs. . .’
No word about misbehaving, just the ‘germ’ worry. I’m from a ‘get-your-hands-mucky’ printmaking era. I shudder to think we are entering Aldous Huxley’s ‘Brave New World’. I’m quite pleased I am allergic to bananas – so I can’t wear such gloves. . .
(Photo by kind permission of Fegan Family)
Finally, I’ve been thinking more and more recently about those unsung heroes who give / gave so much of their life to ensure that people like me learned and got such fun out of music and simple creativity. Paddy and Ann Molloy, Tom Conoboy, Mary and Mick Clifford, Caroline Fegan (nee Judge) were joined last weekend up in the grand session / ceili hall in the sky, by Ted Caulfield, whose house I spent many many hours in during my early teens. He and his wife Ann, threw open their doors every night to hordes of kids craving to learn, play and sing Irish traditional music / folk music and we were welcomed, put thorough our paces and I remember so many times full of laughter and fun and somehow, we got better and sometimes won competitions. We were all in ceili bands and trios and duets as well as our solo stuff and it was enormous fun and such a great social scene in a very safe environment.
Ted didn’t play but had the most wry and wonderful sense of humour and loved all the kids running around and the music they produced. Everyone of every standard was welcomed; no-one was above anyone else. I used to do a duet in competitions with banjo player Annette Caulfield (Ted’s daughter) and she, like Caroline did, (and loads of my contemporaries) now teaches in the Luton area. Like everyone I’ve mentioned above, Ted’s way was gentle, smiling, nurturing and loving. These little moments of joy, implanted by these ‘unknowns’ have become the biggest things in my life now. Ted will be loved and remembered with joy too. His footprint will remain in my heart forever. These people teach more than I ever could – isn’t it interesting that the ones who aren’t perceived as the ‘great’ players / performers, are, at least in my life, the most important ones and inspired me more than anyone since. They instilled a joy, a love of creativity which gently makes us belong. Often they weren’t players at all but it was their way, their gentle, forgiving way of being that really hit home. While researching and writing ‘The Caroline Suite’, all these wonderful people come to mind. . .the ones that left their mark (and left all too soon), the ones, like Annette Caulfield, Marian McGauley, Niall Keegan, Sandra Joyce, Alistair Anderson, Lisa Austin-Strange and Frank McArdle and many many more; their offspring (biological or as students) who are coming along with ever greater ideas. As Martin Hayes always said, ‘The best is yet to come’.
(Photo by kind permission of the Fegan family Aug 2007)
The morning I heard the news about Ted, a herring gull fell off the roof here while Justin and I were nattering and landed outside my back door and flew into my bedroom. He was injured, nestling beside my bed and we managed to pick him up and take him into the garden where he walked around and tried to fly but couldn’t. I stayed watch on him for several hours (worried about cats prowling!) and he finally settled as I started to draw him. It’s amazing how still gulls can be and the drawing intensified my awareness of all the birdsong around on that sunny day. Just him being there made me stop and think of those days at Ted and Ann’s house.
‘Sweet William’ was collected by the RSPCA that evening. What a great organisation; the lady had been held up by rescuing a buzzard (also in the back of her car). Another unsung hero.
I hope they are all flying and smiling broadly by now, looking down on us all.
TUES 1ST July : ANNA SACCHINI & KAREN TWEED : RYDE FESTIVAL, ISLE OF WIGHT
Arrangements & voice by Johnny Sacchini.
St Thomas’ Church, St Thomas Street, Ryde 7pm £3 on the door.
Thurs 3rd July : Karen Tweed DROITWICH
Karen teaching in Droitwich
Fri 4th July : Karen Tweed DROITWICH
Karen teaching in Droitwich
MON 21ST – FRI 25TH July : KAREN TWEED TEACHING / LEADING THE ORCHESTRAL SUITE with her piece ‘THE CAROLINE SUITE’ at Meitheal Summer School, Ireland
And around and about!
1. RYDE MARDI GRAS PROCESSION Sat 28th June 3pm http://www.thenewcarnivalcompany.com/mardi-gras/
2. Sat 5th July : Isle of Wight Symphony Orchestra Newport Isle of Wight
Medina Theatre, Fairlee Road, Newport, Isle of Wight PO30 2DX
Tickets : £14 / Children £6
3. From: Yvonne (Mimail1234) [email@example.com]
Subject: Saltarelle Clifden 60 Bass Accordion
Just for info I’m selling my beautiful piano accordion – I’m in the process of downsizing to an English concertina!
I would be very grateful if you could circulate details:
SALTARELLE CLIFDEN 60 BASS DINO BAFFETTI PIANO ACCORDION
TOP QUALITY, COMPACT, LIGHTWEIGHT BUT POWERFUL INSTRUMENT
HANDMADE REEDS BY ARTIGIANA VOCI
TWO TREBLE VOICES
60 BASS BUTTONS
35 TREBLE BUTTONS INCLUDING AN EXTRA LOW D NOTE
LIGHTWEIGHT APPROX: 6.7KG
DIMENSIONS APPROX: 38.7cm x 16.5cm x37.5cm
PADDED LEATHER ADJUSTABLE STRAPS
EXCELLENT, AS NEW CONDITION – ONE VERY CAREFUL OWNER FROM NEW
ALWAYS STORED IN THE ORIGINAL SALTARELLE DELUXE HARD-SHELL CARRY CASE
THE CASE HAS ADDITIONAL HANDLE & WHEELS
SAME MODEL PLAYED HERE BY SHONA KIPLING: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=64sYUjxgGKM
& HERE BY MURRAY GRANGER: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z6gu6YdNu8A
WELCOME TO TRY BEFORE BUY
I AM LOOKING FOR OFFERS AROUND £3,000 (MUSIC ROOM RETAIL PRICE ON 20 MAY 2014 SHOWING AS £4,500: http://www.themusicroom-online.co.uk/product_info.php/cPath/244_245_247_476/products_id/260)
FOR MORE INFORMATION PLEASE EMAIL: MIMAIL1234@YAHOO.CO.UK<mailto:MIMAIL1234@YAHOO.CO.UK>
4. Ian Storror
Jazz Video of the Week
Gonzalo Rubalcaba is featured leading his Quartet at the 1992 Blue Note Mt. Fuji Jazz Festival.
Gonzalo Rubalcaba, piano
Reynald Melian, trumpet
Felipe Cabrera, bass
Julio Barreto, drums
Gonzalo Rubalcaba was born in Havana on May 27, 1963 and began studying classical piano at age eight and playing nights locally.
He went on tour with Orquesta Aragon, visiting France and Africa in 1983 priorer to forming his band “Grupo Proyecto” two years later and being discovered by Dizzy Gillespie.
Rubalcaba would perform at the 1986 Havana Jazz Festival the following year accompanied by a rhythm section consisting of Charlie Ha den and Paul Motian.
Soon the pianist began appearing at international jazz festivals and became on of the biggest Afro Cuban of the 1990s after sighing with Blue Note. – See more at: http://www.jazzonthetube.com/videos/gonzalo-rubalcaba/giant-steps.html#sthash.CV14pJlj.dpuf
Rubalcaba (Gonzalo Julio Gonzales Fonseca) came to prominence when Dizzy Gillespie included his new band “Grupo Proyecto” at the 1985 Havana Jazz Festival in Cuba.
Gillespie had been instrumental in establishing the festival over a long period, he had fell in love with the music of the island in the late 30’s. He had struck up a friendship with fellow trumpeter Mario Bauz, a Cuban working with Cab Calloway’s band. Bauz was instrumental in getting Gillespie work with Calloway. They had discussed in depth the link between Afro-Cuban music and American Jazz.
Gillespie would later include Cuban musicians in his own band, percussionists Chano Pozo and Machito helped create pieces such as ‘Manteca’ and ‘Cubaba Be- Cubana Bop’ written by George Russell for a Gillespie commission.
He had also been the first to get musicians from the embargoed Cuba to leave the island and tour internationally. Artists such as Paquito de Rivera & Arturo Sandoval benefitted from his connections around the world and in the USA, where these two ultimately emigrated.
In Britain Ronnie Scott also had a close Link with the festival and for several years chartered a plane from the UK, filled with musicians playing at the festival and jazz fans, he also booked Cuban musicians into his club when on tour.
Rubalcaba was the up and coming star of Cuba traditional music and jazz and has since gone on to international recognition playing with luminaries like Charlie Haden & Paul Motion. This was sealed when he signed to Blue Note Records in the early-90’s.
The clip here is from the Mt Fuji jazz Festival in Japan 1992.
The band is: Gonzalo Rubalcaba (Piano)
Reynald Melian (Trumpet)
Felipe Cabrera (Bass)
Julio Barreto (Drums)
The tune is his interpretation of John Coltrane’s, “Giant Steps”
Upcoming JAZZatA Performances in 2014
Thurs 3 July: Rebecca Pronsky (USA) ~ Acoustic/Americana
Sun 3 Aug: The Session (USA) ~ Jazz
Quintet of young talented New Orleans based musicians
Tues 23 Sept: Carrie Elkin Band (USA) ~ Acoustic/Americana
Sun 28 Sept: The Cloudmakers Trio ~ Jazz
Jim Hart (Vibes), Michael Janisch (B), Dave Smith (D)
Thurs 2 Oct: Dave McGraw & Mandy Fer (USA) ~ Acoustic/Americana
Sun 26 Oct: ARQ by Alison Rayner ~ Jazz
Dierdre Cartwright (G), Diane McLoughlin (Sax), Steve Lodder (P), Ali Rayner (B) & Buster Birch (D)
Thurs 28 Oct: While & Matthews ~ Folk / Acoustic
Sun 9 Nov: Tim Richards Hextet ~ Jazz
Featuring: Tim Richards (P) Dick Pearce (Tpt), Ed Jones (Sax), Ralph Wyld (Vibes) & Domonic Howles (B), Peter Ibbetson (D)
Copyright © *2012 Jazz@ the Albert*, All rights reserved.
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5. fRoots Anniversaries Special
The July issue of fRoots, issue 373 is out.
Current UK subscribers should be receiving it about now (you can already access your free digital editions) and it’s in the shops next Thursday. Single paper copies are available from our web site and digital editions for iOS or Android devices can be purchased via the free fRoots apps.
This is our actual 35th Anniversary issue! Not only are we celebrating that, but we’re also marking all those other big birthdays in the community this year – record labels including Topic at 75, Nonesuch at 50, Sain at 45 and both Real World and World Music Network at 25 – and the festivals’ ones like Sidmouth’s 60th, Cambridge and Towersey’s 50th and lots more. Plus, keeping on theme for the cover, the mighty Bellowhead at 10. All that plus a treat: our very first compilation album from 1987, Square Roots, never made it beyond vinyl, cassette and the 1980s so we’re giving it to readers as a free 35th birthday gift.
Just one of the original Square Roots tracks couldn’t be included as we were unable to trace the owner (we added a great substitute from the era instead), but you can hear both it and the track that had to be missed from Topic’s expanded re-issue of its follow up, Tap Roots, on the July fRoots Radio – live now at Podomatic<http://t.ymlp214.net/weearaubembapaeesaoawwjs/click.php>. Among other goodies, a preview of the new Bellowhead album, tracks from everything on this month’s fRoots
Playlist <http://t.ymlp214.net/wemadaubembaxaeesagawwjs/click.php>, and what we think was the first recognisable folk rock single from 1962.
Coming up next month, our annual August/September summer double issue, on sale at all the big summer festivals like Womad and the 60th Sidmouth Folk Week (both of which we’re long-time media partners for), and the already sold out 50th Cambridge Folk Festival. Cover feature will be on the folk first family’s daughter-father superduo of Eliza & Martin Carthy, plus we’ve also got an authoritative feature on the history of Mali’s legendary Les Ambassadeurs (featuring Salif Keita), coming to the UK in late July to billtop at Womad and the Barbican. And the proverbial “lots more” including hitting the half century with fRoots 50 in our mega-collectable compilations series – lots of music you’re unlikely to hear first anywhere else.
What are you missing?
Not yet a subscriber? Lapsed? You really need to do something about that! Or why not consider our Lifetime Supporter scheme. Here’s why<http://t.ymlp214.net/wejazaubembataeesaoawwjs/click.php>!
Everything you need to know is at frootsmag.com<http://t.ymlp214.net/webanaubembacaeesadawwjs/click.php>