BEJE prepares for June 5th: Simon Thoumire and David Milligan at Bath Fringe

I cycled to Bath today down our brilliant railway cylce path, 100+ precious fliers inhand for the June 5th gig at St James Wine Vaults. A perfect bank hol Monday day out! Handed the fliers to punters of the Thoumire-Milligan gig and then went in myself not knowing what to expect.

‘Twas a sublime fusuin of Scots reels and such with a jazzy left hand piano. The concertina sounds oddly distinct. It’s hardly a blend, but kept me alert. It put me in mind of other collaborations I’ve heard-Karen Tweed and Timo Alakotila and June Tabor and Huw Warren.

I love it when European jazz musicians, having inevitably passed through the American jazz songbook explore and bring new insight to our own roots music. Or roots musicians borrow from jazz idioms to look askance at the stuff they’ve done for yonks.

And after all that, a few more fliers round Bath and a great cycle home passed steam trains. Just watering the lettuces before bed. Bliss.
Anyone in Bath fancying being door-keeper on June 25th for free entry and a free cd, let me know!

At the Bath Festival’s extreme fringe June 5

BEJE wine vaults posterA confession: I failed, just, to get a listing in the Bath Fringe Festival brochure. So what d’you call a gig in Bath, in Festival season, that’s uno-unofficial? Still a great one hopefully with Paolo Adamo and mates (just me and Pasquale and Julien shown here). At Bath’s top jazz venue, St James Wine Vaults £5/£4 conc. June 5th 8.30pm.

I may be limbering up with extracts from ‘The Bridging Place’ ready for the band’s performance JUNE 19th at FUTURE INN Bristol, part of Big Green Week

So come to our first gig in Bath! Pasquale in particular is sounding stronger and stronger on my weird repertoire. We played at Bristol’s Tobacco Factory last night (May 18) with Knud Stuwe on guitar. “Smooth and very enjoyable” one happy audient called it. I think others liked it too…

In Bath we’ll definitely be playing ‘Justin’, a new piece with a Middle Eastern maqaam (mode or scale). I like the mood evoked and the challenge to keep solos interesting when the chords don’t change. it’s all rhythm and melody really