It had been ages since ‘BOB DWYER’S BIX & PIECES’ had entertaining us – at least three weeks before this evening, Friday, 30th January 2015! Just in case you were missing them, they returned to us here at the Farnborough Jazz Club, Kent. You might ask why? Seriously, the reason was they were kind enough to accept the date, being prepared to take a chance of last minute cancelation, should we be snowed out (as all these early bands had agreed to). So far the weather has been kind to us. I’m told they were at Hastings the night before and were given plenty of cheers. I must say I’m sure they are cheered wherever they go though, just as they are here. Leader BOB (trombone & vocals) was joined by DAVE RANCE on trumpet, BERNIE HOLDEN on clarinet & sax, HUGH CROZIER on piano & vocals, JOHN BAYNE on double bass & bass sax, NICK SINGER on banjo & vocals and drummer LAURIE CHESCOE.
My first note was of Hugh singing ‘Too Busy’, fabulously (although was he singing it for me? Ha!). They followed on with Bob singing a lovely number, ‘Spain’. I know I’ve said it before, but repeating it, they both have great voices. I cannot recall why I popped over to the Bob at the start of the next number, save to say I trod on his foot. He said he was just going to announce ‘Fidgety Feet’! Anyway, brilliantly played by everyone.
Then Nick came forward to sing ‘Tishomingo Blues’. Now Nick has a wonderful (dare I say gravel) voice so suited to the trad world, don’t ever stop singing Nick. Quite a contrast with Hugh’s, who sang ‘Aint Misbehaving’. He played a super intro first, plus I noted Dave played muted trumpet with Bernie playing sax, all just great. I ticked twice and wrote ‘Fab’ next to ‘Magnolia’s Wedding Day’, I was obviously dancing, so no other comment.
Next came a feature number for Hugh on piano and singing ‘(Oh Darling) Ain’t No Pleasing You’. He just had the accompaniment of John on bass sax [big Bertha] and Bernie on alto sax, plus drums – abso-lutely fab-u-lous. There were so many great numbers in their repertoire, too many to mention, all with huge ticks against them too, but must mention Dave singing ‘Lilly of the Valley’, because he is another lovely singer (and of course, we were all singing along with him).
I must also mention our favourite number of John’s, featuring with ‘Elephant Stomp’. You blow our minds every time John and can never play it too often for us – so talented. I can only follow that on with ‘Puttin’ On the Ritz’, because it’s one of my favourites and we did our line-dance. Although the weather is inclement, I said last week you would soon warm up at the club, especially if you like dancing and said to get your glad rags on and turn up for some fun and join your hosts, Diane and Keith, plus our bar staff, Ian, Val, Harry, Barb and Kath too. This you did and I know you all enjoyed yourselves. Now before closing, we must pay tribute to one of our Country’s greatest leaders of all time. Namely Sir Winston Churchill, as Saturday (24th) was the 50th anniversary of his funeral. He was someone who helped to keep our freedom (thereby to enjoy our music) and who gave us great pride in this Country and United Kingdom. We both feel such pride and thanks to have been born in his era.
Diane & Keith