BOB HADDRELL & DINO COCCIA / A Shaded Spot / Note Records 2010 / Augus 2010
In case you don't know, Bob Haddrell and Dino Coccia are, respectively, the piano player and drummer with rhythm and blues band The Barcodes. Which means the only Barcode missing is guitarist and moothie player Alan Glen. However, even he turns up on one tune to honk his horn. However, this album is a little bit different from the usual Barcodes material, as it dips into jazzy piano based territory.
However, it is very enjoyable, as it nods in the direction of Mose Allison, on a set of eleven new originals that even a guitar fan like me found highly listenable. Bob Haddrell and DIno Coccia have written all the tunes with Bob taking care of the vocals, and there are cameos from sax jazzman Alan Barnes, as well as the aforementioned Alan Glen.
A lot of the songs will appeal to jazz fans more than those of us who've been following them on the blues scene, but there's no arguing with the quality of songs like 'A Slip of the Tongue', 'Natural Selection' and 'Other Side of the Line', nor with the high quality of musicianship on display. The vocals of Bob Haddrell work particualary well with the music that's on offer, and it is the kind of record that you'll rediscover from time to time, as it has all the hallmarks of a hidden gem.
Bob Haddrell, Dino Coccia, Nigel Price CD Launch
606 Club, London SW10 5/6/10
This was a CD launch night for Surrey's note-records with new sets from Haddrell and Coccia (see New & Blue).
Hadrell, at the house Yamaha grand piano, and drummer Coccia took to the floor (the club has no stage) with Phil Antonio on double bass for some mellow originals from their collaboration A Shaded Spot. The laid back, reflective mood was broken somewhat when the bassist was informed that he had parked in the residents bay and had to dash out. Fortunately Jim Mercer, who shares bass duties on the album, was on hand.
Guest spots came from award winning saxophonists Alan Barnes (alto) and Art Themen (tenor) and Alan Glen on harmonica and guitar. The Mose Allison songbook was visited with "I Don't Worry About A Thing" and "Parchman Farm" and well known songs from Jimmy Reed and Sonny Boy Williamson II were given individualistic treatment by 'Whispering Bob'.
The second set saw guitarist Nigel Price, organist Pete Whittaker and Robin Jones on conga drums feature on selections from Dino Coccia's Widespace II Swung, Drawn and Altered, including Kenny Burrell's "Midnight Blue" and the title track.
A cameo for vocalist Paul Cox on Taj Mahal's "Going Up To The Country" closed this set and saw the nine-piece hailed by club owner Steve Rubie as 'the world's largest trio'.
It was left to Parliamentary Jazz Awards Ensemble of 2010 The Nigel Price Trio ñ Price, Whittaker and drummer Matt Home to close the evening with a short spot that began with We Montgomery's "Full House" and ended with Price's "Mozambique", a boogaloo blues inspired by Dr Lonnie Smith
Jon Taylor - Blues in Britain
Blues in Britai - Augus 2010
Dino Coccia - Swung Drawn & Altered - Note Records NCD 1021 2
Bob Haddrell & Dino Coccia - A Shaded Spot - Note Records NCD 2022 2
I recall many years back, in the late eighties I think it was, when Otis Grand told me at The 100 Club: ìIíve got a new drummer, Dino Coccia, heís one of the greatestî. Dino was already a veteran by then, with a couple of decades under his belt, working with jazz, blues, pop and rock acts. For this solo set, his second overall but his first for Note, he is accompanied by guitar ace Nigel Price and the organist Pete Whittaker; unsurprisingly the sound is that of a cool organ trio in the vein of Jimmy Smith or Jimmy McGriff.
This is the kind of jazz that does appeal to many blues lovers straddling the line between the genres quite nicely, and on a number such as "Mickís Place",
where Alan Glen supplies some harmonica playing, crossing over completely into the blue side without any difficulty at all. It may be no coincidence that Art Themen,
once of Alexis Kornerís Blues Incorporated ñ who also straddled blues and jazz with ease ñ plays some fine horn lines. Pete lays down some subtly funk-flavoured
playing whilst Nigelís deft fingers conjure up the shades of Grant Green, Wes Montgomery and Kenny Burrell. One for those relaxed late-night sessions then.
Dino and singer/ keyboards player Bob go back a long way, and of course they are both currently members of The Barcodes (as is guest Alan Glen,
who guests on "Natural Selection"). The sound is once again jazzy and bluesy, with shades of Mose Allison, Georgie Fame, and even a little Nina Simone maybe.
Once again this is a sound that appeals to many blues fans but is all too seldom heard these days (for some tracks here,
you could easily put the word "Blue" in front of the label name to get the picture!). Hopefully efforts such as these two CDs
can bring it back into the blues publicís consciousness. Certainly, when it is played (and sung) as well as this, it is a real pleasure.
Ratings: 8 apiece - Norman Darwen - Blues in Britain