Monday, 20 November 2017 19:08 Bill B E-mailPrintPDF

altPETE MOORE – founder and long serving member of the Miracles – died on Sunday 19th November – it was his 78th birthday. Right now, few details are available save that Moore died in Las Vegas. (Pete is pictured above, second left, with Smokey, Claudette Robinson and Bobby Rogers who died in 2013 - at the Hollywood Walk of Fame awards ceremony in 2009).

Warren "Pete" Moore was born in Detroit in 1939 and was a childhood friend of Smokey Robinson. At high school, the pair formed a vocal group with other school pals. Originally called the 5 Chimes, they became the Matadors, then after signing with Motown they became the Miracles. Moore was the group's distinctive bass voice and also a song writer, working with Smokey to craft classics like 'The Tracks of My Tears', 'Ooo Baby Baby' and 'My Girl Has Gone'. Moore also co-penned 'It's Growing' and 'Since I Lost My Baby' for the Temptations and Marvin Gaye's million sellers, 'Ain't That Peculiar' and 'I'll Be Doggone'.

When Smokey Robinson left for solo success in '71, Pete remained with the group (now fronted by Billy Griffin) and the Miracles continued to enjoy considerable success till they folded in 1978. Their biggest hit of this period' 'Love Machine' was a Moore song.

In recent years Pete Moore was head of Las Vegas-based entertainment firm, WBMM Enterprises and (with Billy Griffin) owner of publishing company, Grimora Music.

Today Berry Gordy posted: "I am deeply saddened to hear of the passing of Warren 'Pete' Moore, a fine human being and valued member of the Motown family. Pete was an original member of my very first group, the Miracles. He was a quiet spirit with a wonderful Bass voice behind Smokey Robinson's soft, distinctive lead vocals and was co-writer on several of the Miracles hits. A gentleman, loving husband, devoted father and loyal friend, we all loved him and will miss him."




Saturday, 18 November 2017 11:20 Charles Waring E-mailPrintPDF


Blessed with a big, booming, old school soul voice - think Mavis Staples meets Koko Taylor with a hint of Macy Gray's husky rasp - Brooklyn singer BETTE SMITH is set to release her much-anticipated debut album, 'Jetlagger,' in the UK on February 7th 2018 via Big Legal Mess/Fat Possum. Already available in the US, it has garnered a raft of rave reviews praising Smith's magnetic performances and ability to create a unique sound and larger-than-life persona in an age when mass-produced, identikit pseudo-soul vocalists proliferate.

'Jetlagger'  was helmed by ex-Buddy Guy sideman, Jimbo Mathus, down in deepest Mississippi, which probably accounts for the palpable blues-rock feel that infuses the album,  whose material ranges from trippy psych-soul soundscapes and gospel-drenched hymnals to rollicking R&B rave-ups and Stax-style horn-laced groovers.

Bette Smith is due to tour Europe early in the New Year, with a UK concert slated for February 27th at London's Borderline  (see details below)


Feb 27         London Borderline   Tickets
March 1        Paris Sunset-Sunside Jazz Club 
March 2        Amsterdam Paradiso   Tickets
March 4        Cologne YUCA (Club Bahnhof Ehrenfeld)
March 5        Berlin Quasimodo

Look for out for a full review of 'Jetlagger' at SJF early in the New Year

Last Updated on Monday, 20 November 2017 08:02



Friday, 17 November 2017 12:57 Bill B E-mailPrintPDF

altFor those of you who like to swing (we do mean in the strict musical sense!) at Christmas may we point you to an upcoming album from UK label Silva Screen Records? 'A SWINGING BIG BAND CHRISTMAS' is a 12 track, various artists affair that offers new looks at traditional favourites like 'Let It Snow', 'Jingle Bells', 'Sleigh Ride' and 'Winter Wonderland'.

Amongst the performers are British jazz veteran Liane Carroll, the acclaimed Joe Stilgoe, Ronnie Scott orchestra frontman Shane Hampsheir and Keith Ferreira – the "singing accountant" who does a great "Bing job" on 'White Christmas'. Another highlight is the slinky take on 'Santa Baby', fronted by Ms Carroll while the whole team get together for the rousing final offering – 'We Wish You A Merry Christmas'.

The London Music Works Band swings superbly throughout and the arrangements come courtesy of Evan Jolly and Callum Au while the producers are Jolly and colleague Rick Clarke.

A SWINGING BIG BAND CHRISTMAS is released on Silva Screen records on November 27th

Last Updated on Friday, 17 November 2017 13:05



Friday, 17 November 2017 11:37 Bill B E-mailPrintPDF

altThe latest single from the Los Charly's collective (essentially, Juan Laya and Jorge Montiel), is a lovely, light retro soul groove, 'The Message'. Credited to THE ANDRÉ ESPEUT QUINTET (André is the go-to vocalist for the Charlys team), the tune will remind you of all kinds of classics – most notably Marvin's 'What's Going On'. Not only does it boast the same intriguing, easy on the ear, multi-layered ambience, the lyrics, too, speaks to our community and "how we could pull together as people letting go of judgment and self-importance".

'The Message' – André Espeut Quintet – released on Imagenes recordings on 1st December

Last Updated on Friday, 17 November 2017 11:41



Friday, 17 November 2017 11:32 Charles Waring E-mailPrintPDF


Just announced is a digital licensing agreement between Universal and the legendary German jazz label, ECM, which will make the Munich-based company's entire repertoire available for the first time ever to stream across all digital platforms.  This means that from today, Friday November 17th 2017, listeners all across the world will be able to access the label's catalogue of over 1,600 albums via Spotify, Apple Music, Amazon, Deezer, Tidal, and, for the audiophiles out there that crave hi-res sound quality, Quboz.

ECM(which stands for Edition of Contemporary Music) was founded 48 years ago in 1969 by jazz bassist-turned-producer, Manfred Eicher, now 74, together with Manfred Scheffner and Karl Egger, who watched the company flourish from the 1970s onwards with the acquisition of star American performers such as pianist Keith Jarrett - who's still with the label today 46 years after his first recording for them - vibraphonist, Gary Burton, guitarist Pat Metheny, and drummer Jack DeJohnette.

Perhaps more importantly, the label - whose distinctive, high quality artwork was as much an important component of its identity as its sound - also nurtured and showcased a wealth of European jazz talent, including such noted musicians as Jan Garbarek, Eberhard Weber, Paulo Fresu, Ketil Bjørnstad, Arve Henriksen, Tore Brunborg, Eivind Aarset, Steffano Bollani, and Erik Honoré. The label also presents classical music and the works of contemporary composers via its New Series imprint.

Last Updated on Friday, 17 November 2017 12:22


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