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July Main Meeting – The Last Naval Hero? – talk by Roy Smart

Our speaker at the July meeting was Roy Smart, who gave us a rip-roaring talk about “The Last Naval Hero”, David 2nd Earl Beatty, hero of the WWI and the darling of the nation.  Blessed with the Nelson touch, this matinee idol had a darker side to his character and was something of a bounder. We heard about Beatty’s astonishing climb to fame and fortune and  his involvement in the Battle of Jutland leading to the death of over 3,000 British sailors but the surrender of the German fleet.  He became immensely rich and had a Downton Abbey life style with his hedonistic, American, socialite wife, Ethel, Countess Beatty, which was marred by marital strife and scandal.  Roy posed the question to us , “Was Beatty a bounder or a cad?” Answer: Probably both!


Open Gardens around Risborough

Our June meeting was the “Open Gardens round Risborough” event.  The weather was perfect and over 50 people wandered around the eight beautiful gardens that were open.  A huge thankyou to all those who opened their gardens and to those who donated the superb array of plants for the Plant Sale. A very special thanks to David and Jenny Brown who hosted the teas and Plant Sale in their garden and to all those who helped make the day very special.   It’s always a lovely occasion and as in previous years, very much enjoyed by everyone.


Jazz Appreciation Group – July Meeting

Keith hosted and presented his theme on Glenn Miller’s life and music.

Tracks played:-

Moonlight Serenade – probably the most popular!
American Patrol
A String of Pearls
St Louis Blues March
Wishing will make it so
Little Brown Jug
I’ve got a gal in Kalamazoo
In the Mood
Pennsylvania 6-5000
Chattanooga Choo Choo
Tuxedo Junction

Apologies for absence were received by John Perkin and Avril Neighbour.

Welcomed to the group was new member Gordon Wakefield.

Homemade meringues, by Rosemary; Lemon Drizzle cake by Janet and a delicious fruit cake were enjoyed at the break for tea/coffee.

There will be no August meeting, and the next meeting is Friday, 22 September at 2:00pm to be hosted by Rosemary who will present THE BIG BANDS.


Jazz Appreciation Group

Gill hosted May’s meeting which was presented by Janet on Acker Bilk.

Tracks played included “Aria”, “Summer Set”, and of course “Stranger on the Shore”.

Later tracks played were by Oscar Peterson, and Three “B’s” – Barber, Bilk and Ball.

The Group gave its thanks to Gill and Janet.

Best Wishes to Keith who could not be there as he has to attend a clinic on Tuesdays.

The June meeting (Glenn Miller) will now be on Monday 19th and July’s meeting (Sonny Rollins) will now be on Friday 21st so that Keith can attend.

There will be no meeting in August.


PR U3A Jazz Appreciation Group – April Meeting

Due to holidays, and for other reasons, there was only four members at this month’s meeting when Avril covered some of the contributions of women in the history of jazz music.

Starting with Lill Hardin-Armstrong in 1926, and progressing through Patricia Baker ‘s “Smash” recorded in Chicago in 2013, to Ute Lemper’s “Berlin Cabaret Songs” CD of 1996 from the decadent early 1930’s Berlin.

Avril ended with two songs by Nina Simone.

We still have one or two vacancies in the Jazz Appreciation Group.


Jazz Appreciation Group

Gill was our host for the March meeting  fresh from her long visit “Down Under”.

She introduced us to the life and music of that much misunderstood jazz painist Thelonious Monk.

Thanks to Gill for her Coffee & Wallnut cake and little buns.

Keith and Diana are leaving the group due to other committments, but may rejoin is in the Autumn.

That allows two vacancies in the group.

Due to changing circumastances we are reverting to a 10:00 start for our meetings.


Jazz Lunch at “The Bull”, Sunday 15th January

Thanks to Avril for organising for eight members, family and friends to enjoy a Jazz Lunch at “The Bull”, Gerrards Cross.

The music, which was not intrusive, was by the “Easy Jazz” Trio of Piano, Guitar and Vocalist.

Next month we will be sampling the triple CD “The Epic” and hopefully having a short retrospective on Buddy Grecco who died a few days ago.


Jazz Appreciation Group – December Meeting

Thanks to Avril for hosting our Festive Jazz meeting and for her excellent sandwiches, mince pies and Stollen cake.

We started with ten tracks of Keith B’s Sinatra CD, followed by several tracks from one of Alan’s CD’s, and ended with the U3A National Jazz Co-oridinator Mike’s Festive Jazz CD compilation which was originally prepared for the Taunton U3A JAG.

There will be no meeting on the 17th January, instead we will be at “The Bell” PH in Gerard’s Cross for a jazz lunch which we are all looking forward to as a group.

The first meeting in the New Year will be at John’s on the 21st February when we will be investigating some tracks of the recent triple CD “Epic” by Kamasi Washington.


Jazz Group

On Tuesday afternoon we nearly had all of our members present and I hosted the meeting and made a batch of Barra Brith to a new receipe.

For the first session I covered Part 2 of my “Concerts” theme, starting with Humph at the RFH in 1951 and 1954. Later I played a track from the Miles Davis and John Coltrain concert in Stockholm in 1960 which the ladies did not appreciate. After a Ronny Scott / Tubby Hayes 1958 recording I then pleased the ladies with some early British trad from the 1950’s.

After tea and coffee we played some requests and more early Trad.

Our Christmas Festive Jazz meeting has had to be postponed to the 12th December with a 12:00 start.

In January instead of a home meeting we hope to have a Jazz Lunch at “The Bell” in Gerard’s Cross.

The Jazz Group has now reached its maximum size for home venues.

If future U3A members wish to join the group we may have to consider splitting into two groups as homes are the right venues for the ambience.