Thursday, May 25, 2006

Breda Jazz Festival

Bill Bacon

The Breda Jazz Festival is organized in the four days at Ascension Day ( 25th - 28th May 2006). Although it was traditionally dedicated to the traditional jazz styles modern elements are sceduled too nowadays. A full program is to be seen at their informative and beautiful web site .

I'll hope to visit it today without having a special program in mind and tonight the James Carter concert at the Chassé theater will be my highlight I hope.

In the
1970s I visited the festival three times.
In remember the Dutch Swing College Band and the Albert Nicholas performances in 1972, the great concerts of the Original Prague Syncopated Orchestra in 1978 and 1979, the Claude Hopkins, Dickie Wells and Earle Warren concert in 1978 ( in fact I remember the fragile old man at the piano chair playing like a young guy ) and the concerts of Wild Bill Davison with the Classic Jazz Collegium ( 1978)

In the 1980s I remembered the great concert in 1981 of the Zimbabwean Neptune Band, pure New Orleans style and I must have seen Turk Murphy's band ( although I don't have clear remembrances to that concert) ( no ... not the alcohol !!). In 1985 the Portena Jazz Band from Argentina and the Dutch Gangbusters performed at the Turfschip in Breda and maybe it is an unimportant change that both Martin Muller of the Portena as Frenk van Meeteren and Ton van Bergeyk of the Gangbusters are great Oscar Aleman admirers.

remember a weird story to illustrate how famous ( ! ) I was in the 1980s. We had planned to visit the night concert at the Turfschip in Breda somewhere in the 1980s, but, as usual we were much to early at the Turfschip. We dedided to drink something at the bar of the hall to kill time. While doing that a man, obvious an American ( coloured shirt, cowboy hat) came into the bar and filled the whole room. He came to sit next to me at the bar and said to me: You're going to give me a beer. Well, for me that's the wrong way to get a beer so I refussed it and after some time the man told me he was looking for a Dutchman; maybe I knew him. I told him that millions of Dutchmen live in Holland, so ..... He told the name of the man, the name of the street and the city and he even knew the zip code by heart. I grew pale and was very surprised as the man had told me my name and address without making a single hesitation. I considered his remarks carefully and told him that he had found the right man, but .... how did he know my name and all those other information? Well I knew I would meet that man, he said and took his bag. He delivered me an envelope with one of those typlically 1980s auction lists, filled with thousands of records typefaced with small letters. I don't have to pay for the stamps now. Now I remembered that I had asked someone in the US a long time ago for such a list. I returned my thanks and offered him a drink. Well, didn't I tell you you would offer me a drink? he said. The man was Bill Bacon from Texas, a regular visitor of the festival.


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