Sunday, April 12, 2009

the ides of April - Springtime in the jazz venues of Paris

A quick rundown on the next couple of weeks in the jazz clubs of Paris and live jazz in Paris. First things first though - Hurry! Hurry!! Get to the city quick! Because it is April. And it is Spring! In Paris! Its such a beautiful month here. You just can't go wrong with April in Paris (the song was right!) So grab one of those cheap flights and get your ass over here - it'll be worth it!

and now, Jazz Clubs and Bars and Cellars and Festivals in Paris ---

First - how can I pass up the chance to pass the word on about a fellow Canadian in Paris.

The lovely Ndidi O is a British Columbian singer (hailing from Burns Lake... now that's a tiny little town) with a Nigerian heritage. You can hear her at myspace and she'll be singing on the 28th and 29th of April at Duc Des Lombards and then in a few other venues around town

And before that (also at the Duc) there's the wonderful James CARTER Quintet featuring Corey WILKES ( James Carter - sax ; Corey Wilkes - trumpet ; Gerard Gibbs - piano ; Ralph Armstrong - double bass; Leonard King – drums)

They're playing on the 21st - 25 Euro a ticket... Check out our venues page for address and phone numbers, and here's a clip of them at the Vienna Jazz Fest

Now - if you want to get off the beaten track then I totally recommend this little fest

its deep in the heart of the African neighbourhood La Goutte D'Or up in the 18th. Not the most touristy of areas, but one of the most interesting places in Paris. Names after the light white wine that grew in the vineyards of the hills outside of the old city walls, now its a mishmash of working class homes, subsidized housing, fashion districts and artist lofts. And the Lavoir Moderne is a stronghold of everything Avant Garde that is still left in Paris.

here's a brief rundown on the untranslatable info on the festival. Head up early, get some great couscous, split a bottle of red. It'll be surprising and amazing.

16th April - A night of song, new creations. Open to Griot singers of today, where words leap and language comes alive - accordion, mandolin, theatre artists, poets

17th April, The Big Feelings
Solo voice and double bass. Elise Dabrowski brings a pure and unique sound to her rare musicality.

and a 'drunken' theatre show of childish and wise improvised scenes

18 avril A 'hommage' to George Brassens poet and songwriter extraordinary, with the cream of the crop of young french chanson singers.

Réservation : 01 42 52 09 14 ou – 06 24 18 83 41 ou

Sunday, April 05, 2009

My New Jazz Cabaret Work... with standards by Kander and Ebb, Shelton Brooks,

edited video of my latest Jazz Cabaret work - The Barker's Spiel. Songs of Tom Waits, Nirvana, Jacques Brel...

first presented at the London Fringe Festival, The Barker's Spiel plays with cliches and stereotypes of cabaret and Jazz and lounge singers, mixing and matching singers and songs.

the London Free Press says

"Bremner Duthie promises that miracles will happen as he opens his new show The Barker's Spiel at the London Fringe. He also offers a "side order of belief" and a "tiny sliver of hope."From carnival barker to Las Vegas performer to Berlin Cabaret singer, Duthie gives us the scoop on life as an entertainer. Everyone's looking to be entertained -- and Duthie serves up wares such as white-fingered monkeys and red velvet hats, juggling, singing and dancing…..

Saturday, April 04, 2009

We're back - we're nationwide! The best jazz Bars and Cafes in Paris

Well, I guess with the web these days that would be 'worldwide'

So, before I get down to reviewing the jazz clubs in Paris or talking about the new jazz in Paris, let me just say that finally my album of standards is mastered, and now graphics for the album are in design and a version is winging its way towards the digital distributor and we're filling out forms to pay for the rights to the songs.... All the things that you have to do after you do all the artsy stuff of singing and making music. If you want to take a listen then check out the link on the right to the album - its called 'The Sky Was Blue' (the first words from that wonderful standard 'lover come back to me'...

meanwhile in Paris. There is sooooo much to see and do in April. I'm going to start off with another wee shout out for this great site It's all in French, but the language is pretty simple, and it'll give you listings for all the 'open mic' jams that are happening around town. For example 'Autour de Midi.. et Minuit' (which is a great little basement club just down from the legendary cafe where 'Amelie Poulain' worked in Montmartre) - they have a Jam for swing and Be-Bop players every tuesday beginning at 10pm. So if you're tempted why not pack up your instrument, or beg, borrow or steal one here and become part of jazz history playing in the clubs of Paris. All the jams I've been to are welcoming and cheerful affairs...

As you know if you've read this blog before I'm not a huge fan of Jazz Manouche, or Django Reinhardt style playing. But I'll admit that could be because every guitarist in France thinks they can 'naturally' play this music so I've seen a lot of indifferent Jazz Manouche... however this little festival looks interesting

I don't know the players, but the cafe is a totally charming spot to see jazz and the neighbourhood is one the most romantic in Paris and even some half decent playing can be improved with a good bottle of wine and a steak frites.

This should be cool -

John Edwards

- photo jmm sur

John is releasing an album of solo bass and is doing a CD release concert on the 11th at Souffle Continu (Souffle Continu - 20 / 22 rue Gerbier - 75011 Paris - T. 01 40 24 17 21, M° Voltaire ou Philippe Auguste, - I love the name of this club - how would we translate that? - Either Never-Ending-Breath, or the technical players term 'Circular Breathing'... Anyway, John will be on at 18:30 (6.30pm) Here's a clip of him playing with Evan Parker

And finally, a little big band -

Inama is a Sextet of young french players. I'll be heading out to hear them for the first time live - you can get a taste of them at - a sort of free jazz with elements of pop and rock thrown in there. They're on stage a couple of time in the next weeks. on 10/04/09 at 20h00 (8pm) at Centre Culturel Mongallet
4, passage Stainville, 75012 PARIS, 9/7€ and 25/04/09 √† 20h30, LA CHAPELLE DES LOMBARDS, 19, rue de Lappe, 75011 PARIS, 10/8€

enjoy April in Paris

I never knew the charm of spring
I never met it face to face
I never new my heart could sing
I never missed a warm embrace

Till April in Paris, chestnuts in blossom
Holiday tables under the trees
April in Paris, this is a feeling
That no one can ever reprise