Monthly Archives: January 2014

‘Chez Chesterman’s Band of Brothers’, 24/01/2014

CHEZ CHESTERMAN’S BAND OF BROTHERS’ were at our Farnborough Jazz Club (Kent) on Friday, 24th January 2014.  The guys in the band were trumpeter/vocalist and leader CHEZ, with GEOFF COLE on trombone & vocals, ROY JAMES on banjo & guitar, TERRY LEWIS on double bass and BILL FINCH on drums.  Our crowd was somewhat diminished for one reason or another, but not enough to spoil the evening.  Chez and Geoff played their ‘socks off’, to which we tip our hats to, including the rest of the band.  There was plenty of dancing going on, albeit some numbers were just listened to.  They put on a good repertoire and here are a few numbers to give you a feel of the evening.  The first number I jotted down was called ‘Down in Honky Tonk Town’, with Geoff (who has a great jazz voice) singing and Roy playing banjo.   King Oliver’s ‘Riverside Blues’ was another tune that lured the dancers on.  Chez (who also has that wonderful unique jazz voice) sang the next number (plus a few of us in the audience too), called ‘Down by the Riverside (Study War No More)’.  Some of you will know folk singer, Peter Seeger had a big ‘hit’ with this number in 1956, with his slightly changed lyrics and of course you may be aware, he died this Sunday (27th) at the age of 94yrs.  Back to our jazz, the next numbers I jotted down were ‘Bugle Boy March’, ‘A Kiss to Build a Dream On’ (Roy played guitar) and ‘The Sheik of Araby’, all fabulous numbers.  Then Chez sang to a beautiful ballad called ‘I Can’t Sleep’, and all the dancers (and non-dancers) came out to dance.  The writer of this wonderful tune (‘Montana’ Taylor) never enjoyed fame, disappearing from the spotlight (twice) for years at a time, dying at the early age of 51yrs, in 1954 (I say “play it again please Sam”).  Geoff sang and Roy played guitar to the next number called ‘Oh Lady Be Good’.  Then Fats Waller’s number ‘Fair and Square In Love’, sung by Chez, was their last number and so our dancers all came on the dance floor.  So many of you thanked Chez, saying how much you enjoyed the evening.  It is so nice for musicians to be told afterwards, it makes their evening complete and helps them on their long journey home.

You have no need to read this bit, but before I close, I wanted to mention a weird thing that happened whilst preparing this newsletter!   As you know, weird things often happen to me – of course just coincidences (or is it just that I am weird – well no need to agree so readily!)   First of all, I was chatting to the band (having had lots of little mishaps), I mentioned having seen Anthony Newley’s (1961) play ‘Stop the World, I Want to Get Off’.  I recalled not understanding the meaning then, even though I found it very clever and funny (Anna Quale’s debut I recall).  Anyhow, I visited Les Hanscombe’s Tailgate Jazz Band on ‘Youtube’  to prepare for next week’s newsletter.  Pay a visit and you will hear Les announcing the number ‘Don’t Give up the Ship’ (they have a CD named by this title).  Les says this number apparently was to be called ‘Stop the World, I want to Get Off’, but it was too long a title.  Visit ( (Tune No: 7, recorded at Harwich Electric Palace Cinema -Harwich).  Creepy aye?  I haven’t mentioned the play in years!  By the way, I fully understand the meaning of the play now!  Hmmm!

Oh wow, another one!!!!  I came back to finish this newsletter this morning (Thursday).  Last Friday morning, I bought two DVD’s (digressing, one I mentioned on the mike – reading out ‘Daddy Long Legs’ which says ‘Contains no sex, violence or bad language’, now that’s a rarity aye?  Joyful called out “I bet Keith won’t watch it”!  I watched the other DVD (‘South Pacific’) last night.  What is weird you ask?  Well, I have just realised I saw that film (& play) in 1958 – the year I thought I had seen Anthony Newley’s play (standing corrected this a.m. to 1961).  The composers of ‘South Pacific’ were Rodgers & Hammerstein.  What’s so weird, you are asking?  The band played and I chose to jot down ‘A Kiss to build a Dream on’ – composer? – Oscar Hammerstein II.  Are they all trying to get in touch with me!!!!!!  Chez’s band returns here on 9th May 2014.

Diane and Keith

‘Down By the Riverside (Study War No More)’ – traditional/Gospel song first published 1918
‘Bugle Boy March – Francis Meyers ((1907)
‘Do What Ory Say’ – Kid Ory (1945)
‘Down In Honky Tonk Town – (m) Chris Smith, (l) Charles Mccarron (1916)
‘Fair and Square in Love’ – Fats Waller (1938)
‘A Kiss to Build a Dream On’ – (m) Harry Ruby & Oscar Hammerstein II, (l) Bert Kalmar, (1935)
‘I Can’t Sleep’ – Arthur ‘Montana’ Taylor (1929)
‘Oh Lady Be Good’ – (m) George Gershwin, (l) Ira Gershwin (1924)
‘Riverside Blues’ – Thomas A Dorsey & Richard M Jones (1923)
‘The Sheik of Araby’ – (m) Ted Snyder, (l) Harry B. Smith & Francis Wheeler (1921)

Bob Dwyer’s Bix & Pieces, 17/01/2014

‘BOB DWYER’S BIX & PIECES’ played for us on Friday, 17th JANUARY 2014 here at FARNBOROUGH JAZZ CLUB.  The musicians in the band were leader BOB on trombone & vocals, MAX EMMONS on trumpet, harmonica & vocals, Ausie DUNCAN HEMSTOCK on clarinet & sax (who stepped in for Bernie Holden), HUGH CROZIER on piano & vocals, JOHN BAYNE on double bass/bass sax, NICK SINGER on banjo & vocals and LAURIE CHESCOE on drums, whistle & grins.  I began the evening in a state of panic.  I’m looking after a family member’s house, which is on the highest point of Kent. That day, water was pouring off the lawn, threatening to flood, so I needed to sort before leaving!  Also someone said M25 had been closed due to flooding, so I thought we would be in trouble at the club.  Possibly band having problems getting to us, plus having a small audience?  However, the band all made it, but the audience arrived at a trickle – pardon the pun!  I did say jokingly last week to swim to us, but great as you are, most regulars arrived and a wonderful evening ensued.  I wrote so many tunes down, so I found it hard to decide which ones to tell you about, but here’s my choice.  The first was a Billie Holiday number called ‘No Regrets’ and sung by Bob.  He has a very melodic voice.  ‘At The Jazz Band Ball’ was my next number to mention.  Wow, they were all up dancing and I managed to write ‘Yeah!’  I wrote a huge asterisk next to ‘Rebecca,  Rebecca, Get Your Big Legs Off of Me’’, and jotted down “Fabulous – an ‘all-out’ number, with all of them playing brilliantly – especially Max, who sang, plus played harmonica.  We performed our line-dance to their next number, Irving Berlin’s fabulous song ‘Puttin’ on the Ritz’.  Well four of us did.  A few of our usual line-dancers had not made it to the club, but I think us four enjoyed ourselves.  I hope the rest of the audience and band enjoyed it too (tough if you didn’t, ha).  John needs to have a special mention with his marvellous performance to the next number.  He began the tune playing solo bass sax to the complete tune of ‘It’s a Sin to Tell a Lie’, then the rest joined in, with Nick singing in his own inimitable way, plus audience participation too.   The next fabulous number was one they have played for us in the past.  I must tell you how again, they all gave an amazing performance.  The number was ‘Freight Train Blues’.  Max not only sung it, but also played harmonica.  John played bass sax, with drummer Laurie blowing the whistle, plus Bob and Duncan making the sound of a train.  Such splendid entertainment and I personally would like them to play it each time they return.  Then someone suggested we have the ladies in the audience ask the men for a dance, which was a lovely idea.  At that point, the band played my request of ‘Change Partners and Dance with Me’, a lovely medium (successful) dance tempo.  We’ll have to try that again next week.  The next number featured Duncan on clarinet with Laurie on drums.  Absolutely superb.  When they finished, I asked if I could speak and said “They have just re-named our club to Carnegie Hall.  Laurie’s grin resembles Gene Krupa and Duncan was definitely in Benny Goodman’s shoes.  You’ve guessed, it was ‘Bei Mir Bist Du Shon’, re-written by Sammy Cahn in 1937, who gave the then unknown Andrew Sisters a huge world-wide hit.  By the way, (I think I have mentioned before) I might have been the person who started off calling it ‘My Dear Mr Shane’!  Keith corrected me nearly 30years ago!  I prefer my name!  To continue, they finished the evening with ‘Caldonia’.  Yes, they have played it before for us, but again they do it so well, with Hugh’s super vocals too.  You are a wonderful band and consequently, everyone left on a ‘high’ with huge smiles on their faces.   It certainly was fun jazz, jazz, jazz and as quoted last week from Bing’s words, “and that’s jazz”!  Their next date here is 28th March 2014.

Diane and Keith

At The Jazz Band Ball’ – (m) Nick LaRocca, Larry Shields (1917) (l’s added 1950 by Johnny Mercer)
‘Bei Mir Bist Du Shon’ – (m) Sholom Secunda, (l) Jacob Jacobs (1932). Re-written by Sammy Cahn &Saul Chaplin (1937)
‘Caldonia’ – (believed written in 1945 by Louis Jordan)
‘Change Partners and Dance with Me’ – Irving Berlin (1938)
‘Freight Train’ – Elizabeth ‘Libba’ Cotton (circa 1906)
‘It’s A Sin to Tell a Lie’ – Billy Mayhew (1936
‘No Regrets’ – (m) Roy Ingraham (l) Harry Tobias (1936)
‘Puttin’ On the Ritz’ – Irving Berlin (1929)
‘Rebecca, Rebecca, Get Your Big Legs Off of Me’ – Pete K.H. Johnson & Big Joe Turner (circa 1938)

Phoenix Dixieland Jazz Band 10/01/2014

PHOENIX DIXIELAND JAZZ BAND played on FRIDAY, 10th JANUARY 2014, here at FARNBOROUGH JAZZ CLUB for my ‘17th’ birthday celebration and thanks, they did me proud.  The leader of this 7-pce band is our long-term friend ROBIN COOMBS, who plays clarinet. With him was NORMAN BULL on trombone, DAVE BARNES on piano, ROGER CURPHEY on double bass and LYNN SAUNDERS on banjo and vocals. Robin also had two special guest stars, namely PAUL HIGGS on trumpet and ALAN CLARKE on drums.  Please check them out in the ‘Band’s CV’s page (also go to the bottom of the page – you will see a photo of Keith in his first band with Norman, both as teenagers!).   I mentioned last week that I was sure you would want to get out for a bit of jazz and dancing after such a long break (being a year ago, ha!!!)  I also mentioned that we hoped you would all be fully recovered from the dreaded lurgies many of you seem to have, or have had!  I also said what a great party we had for Christmas and that with no jazz on Friday (4th), it seemed really weird how we did not feel ‘hung over’ the next day, plus no sore feet!  Anyway, I was really looking forward to possibly having another great party, especially as last year’s 70th had been cancelled (due to the same virus) and before I could even send out invitations too.  So I suggested having a ‘Gangsters & Moles’ party (optional) as my family would be coming dressed in party wear.  Yes, I know, I made the same error last time we had that theme.  I meant to say ‘Gangsters & Molls’ of course (last time, Steve came in a Mole mask! hmmm).  Well, the evening was fanbeeptastic.  They began the evening with ‘I’ve Found a New Baby’, a lovely tempo.  The next number featured Robin on clarinet and Norman on trombone, called ‘As Long As I Live’.  Next came ‘Big Butter and Egg Man’.  The band’s usual trumpeter, Dave Ware, has had a tooth extraction, which as you know, will prevent him from playing until it heals, so he came to listen.  The guys asked him to sing their next number ‘I Want a Little Girl to Call My Own’.  Dave has a lovely voice, so it was nice he showed up.  Their next tune played was ‘Indiana’ (Back Home In).  This number was played in the ‘The Gene Krupa Story’ and ‘The Five Pennies’ films.  Another number to mention was sung by Dave (B) and he got our audience to participate, with a great fun ‘Fats Waller’ number called ‘Twenty-Four Robbers’.  This song was also recorded by Glen Miller with Bing Crosby singing.  Then came a real treat with Paul featured on trumpet, called ‘Stardust’.  What a lovely number it is and certainly Paul was wonderful.  Joan in the audience requested that lovely tune, called ‘Sweet Lorraine’.  This was followed with Duke Ellington’s fabulous number called ‘Caravan’, in which Alan performed an incredible drum solo, lasting about three minutes, mind blowing stuff – lovely jubbly.  They finished up with a little bit of ‘Bye Bye Blues’.  One of the highlights of the evening for me was Roger allowing my seven (nearly eight) year old granddaughter to assist him with his double bass playing during his solo (I hope to publish a bit of it – or a photo later).   The band will be back on 18th April 2014 for Easter (Good Friday).  Thank you everyone, for making my evening.

Don’t forget ‘Keep jazz ‘live’, so see you all next Friday.

Diane and Keith

‘As Long As I Live’ – (m) Harold Arlen, (l) Ted Koehler (1934)
‘Big Butter and Egg Man’ – Percy Venable (1926)
‘Bye, Bye Blues’ – Fred Hamm, Dave Bennett, Bert Lown & Chauncey Gray (w.1925, p.1930)
‘Caravan’ – (m) Juan Tizol, (l) Irving Mills (1937)
‘Indiana (Back Home In)’ – (m) James F. Hanley, (l) Ballard MacDonald (1917)
‘I’ve Found a New Baby’ – Jack Palmer and Spencer Williams (1926)
‘I Want a Little Girl to Call My Own’ – Murray Mencher and Bill Moll (1930)   sung by Dave
‘Twenty-Four Robbers’ – Teddy Buckner & Victor Young (1941)
‘Stardust’ – (m) Hoagy Carmichael (1927), (l) Mitchell Parish & Hoagy (1929)
‘Sweet Lorraine’ – (m) Cliff Burwell, (l) Mitchell Parish (1928)