' series of bands at Henry's Cellar
frustrating place if you actually
JAZZ Martin Kershaw Queen's Hall, Edinburgh, Fri 10 Nov.
Saxophonist Martin Kershaw has built a growing reputation with a
Bar in Edinburgh, and is set to make the step up to a bigger stage at The Queen's Hall, in a gig headlined by the legendary alto saxophonist, Lee Konitz. Kershaw also remains central to the revamped programming at Henry's, where Assembly Direct have joined forces with Kirsten Douglas to take the venue forward.
That has meant a new piano, a much improved sound system, an earlier start, and a switch of emphasis away from the more experimental hip-hop and drum & bass orientated gigs. Henry's has been the classic smoke-filled dive up till now, and was often a
wanted to hear the music, rather than just hang with your buddies.
Kershaw welcomes the development at this stage, and feels that ’it has to be a good thing that Assembly Direct are involving themselves, and putting up some money to really promote things, because that has not really happened before. I think it was starting to lose momentum a bit because of the lack of funding, and this will give it a boost.’
He took up saxophone as a teenager, and played in local bands in York. He came to Edinburgh as a student, then grabbed the chance to go to Berklee College in Boston, but returned here two years ago. He currently has three bands. Give us the tour, then, Martin.
‘The Martin Kershaw Quartet was really put together because I had a bunch of my own tunes I was dying to try out, and it's been a real buzz for me to see how the
guys reacted to my music, and how it changes when l other people get involved with it. Groovediggaz is a Lvery different kettle of fish. I've always wanted to get
Boogie chillun. the North Mississippi Allstars
Martin Kershaw gets the horn for a revamp
together a really good funk covers band, doing heavy funk stuff from the 705, JB's stuff, that kind of thing.
‘It's a really fun band, and we mostly play Henry's at the weekends, when there is always a good vibe in the place. Green Juice came out of the Monday night drum & bass sessions at Henry's, and it was really a pure jamming vibe, just getting together and seeing what came out. We’ve just done a demo, to see if there is any interest.‘
Kershaw is also a regular in the Scottish National Jazz Orchestra, an experience he relishes, especially when Joe Lovano came to town earlier this year. 'Playing with Joe Lovano was an amazing experience, he is such a hero of mine. I love playing with the band. Tommy Smith has brought together all this talent, and has organised them into a really good band, and it's exciting to be part of that.‘ (Kenny Mathieson)
ain’t homage baby, this is the real deal.
Luther Dickinson has the deep v0iced, Southern charm of a man who has spent too many hours drinking bourbon and smoking homegrown while fishing the bayou. His passion for the blues and southern roots music is eVident from the off as he lists the great and good beginning With Robert Johnson, then he
Black Flag and I thought "hey man! ” Van Helen was also a big influence as were the Stones.’ Dickinson is certainly no purist, his tales of pan motivators are
North Mississippi Allstars
13th Note Club, Glasgow, Tue 14 Nov. There's a scene in Withnai/ And I in which Paul McGann returns to his flat
where his drug dealer and his Voodoo prince friend are squatting, the latter is
languishing in the foam when McGann
stumbles to the toilet. Paranoid from
; excessive inebriation, he screams
"Who’s the enormous spade in the
bath?” Politically incorrect of course,
but very funny in the context of the film, it is a scene that plays through the
48 THE LIST 2—16 Nov 2000
mind’s eye when one looks at the press photos of the North Mississippi Allstars.
Two young scrawny white longhairs bracket a huge, bald-headed eagle of a black man. Chris Chew is the titanic gospel singing bass player and his slacker cohorts are the brothers Dickinson, Luther (guitar, vocals) and Cody (drums), and between them they are the best deep-fried, hard southern blues band the world has seen since the original Allman Brothers line-up imploded. You better believe it honey — the NMA sound is somewhere between where Hendrix started out and where Gomez hope to arrive one day — this
impressiver broad (he also manages to pull in the mowes Crossroads, the story of Robert Johnson selling his soul to the devil, and the sambatastic Black Orpheus as major squeezes).
Primarily a brilliant live band, the NMA’s new album Shake Hands With Shorty almost manages to recreate the seven year lineage of playing rough and
CLASSICAL SCO with Jaime Laredo - Bow and Baton
Queen’s Hall, Edinburgh, Thu 2 Nov; City Hall, Glasgow, Fri 3 Nov.
Pittodrie, Dens Park and the Shybury
Excelsior — what or whoever they are named after is unlikely to be a violinist. Yet go to La Paz and you will find a
football stadium bearing the name of
Bolivian-born Violinist/conductor Jaime Laredo. A national hero, honoured by the
Bolivian government and its people, Laredo was actually brought up in the US. Although no sports facilities here
have given similar recognition as yet,
I Laredo is held in deep affection by the
iolts ou, ’when I was twelve I discovered i Y
ready live Southern boogie, but how would Dickinson describe the music to
newcomers? 'It’s Just nasty Mississippi
rock, the rock boogie of the future that you’ll definitely see some pretty women
shakin ’em down to’. Trip on brothers. (Paul Dale)
Scots, particularly those remember his pioneering work in the formative stages of the Scottish Chamber Orchestra. It is to this orchestra, with which he enjoys an exceptional relationship, that he returns to give the second of the new ’Bow and Baton’ series.
In all, three soloists will take the dual
role of instrumentalist and conductor. Although it is a partnership which can bring inspirational results (the SCO’s Mozart Piano Concertos With Christian Zacharias at this year's Edinburgh International Festival is a prime example), it is, says Laredo, ’not something you can do with just any
orchestra. For instance, I wouldn’t think about doing the Zwillich Double
Concerto With any other group. I trust the SCO 100%!
On this occasion, he comes to the orchestra with his cellist Wife, Sharon Robinson, for the European premiere
of the Ellen Zwillich piece, a concerto
written specially for them. 'When playing and conducting,’ he says, 'it becomes much more like chamber mu5ic, With everyone really listening and not just watching some person beating time. And this concerto is very, very beautiful, very romantic and lush. She writes in a rather old-fashioned way.’
The programme also includes the ever
popular Bruch Violin Concerto. The SCO/Laredo recording of this, made at least fifteen years ago, has become a best seller. Although Laredo t0urs internationally, playing, conducting and recording With the world's best, his time With the SCO is special. ’I've been thinking about these concerts for
months,’ he says. ’It’s like coming
home to a family.’ (Carol Main)
Laredo conducts himself with utmost skill