Standing Room Only

Hortense has a thing about crowded rooms and shenanigans. Miss H has a thing about many things, really, but all too often they end with more of a whimper than a bang. Just ask Rotten Ronnie Junior, who, should you care to know, is progressing well since the Ballarat affair, and should be up and about (as Hortense would have it) any day now. But I digress. Hortense, looming darkly in the back bar, or not as the case may be, could only wonder “what the?”, as one does, when confronted with the sort of noise that emanated from the Gold Street Gossip Shop last Sunday. Il Duce even had to fight his way to the drum set such was the crush. Swung nicely when he got there, too.

Captain Chaos was cracking the whip, with the likes of Yass (guitar) Brent (alto) Brian (bass and Brummy accent) Keef (tenor) Danilo/Andrew/Fred percussion and a bevvy of singers that included Chelly (overwhelmed by a rowdy sextet and the Captain’s carefully misleading instructions) and a rare appearance from the gorgeous Miss Julie Stewart. The affable Mr Curtis, Taariq the Terrible, Bob and meself generally filled in where needed. It was such fun, we probably filled in where not needed as well, just in case…

I quite forget who else was there, and it would be no use asking Hortense, as she tries to forget everything as soon as it happens, on principle. I am not sure what the principle is. Anyway, there were over 20 musos and singers again, and a fine time was had by all. And that is not counting the lads from the front bar who offered to sing the Melbourne Football Club theme song. Well, we all like songs we haven’t heard for a while, don’t we?  

It was quite a good session, I thought. Standing room only.

What’s On At The Grand

If you haven’t been, you’d better go soon. Last week saw more or less a full house on both nights, Library full as well, with two of the best singers both in top form.  

Last week, Miss Ruby Rogers wowed a large audience on Friday with her best set yet. with meself, Tom Doublier and Avi Ganesan providing the rhythm section and the Captain and Keef scaring the neighbours with some casual sax . . Saturday saw the Divine Miss Smiff in swinging form, and at last getting the crowd she has deserved. Greatly helped by Curtis (p) Atkinson (d) Daigo (db) and Captain Chaos (chaosophone) all swinging the tits off everything all night long. 

Friday 29th The sultry Jo Loth returns from her Butterfly Club Cabaret adventures, swinging up a few ballads and jazz standards, with meself, Avi and first timer Andrew Putnam on drums. Poor lad doesn’t know what he has let himself in for…

Saturday 30th Carol Whitfield sings her first Grand Hotel session: Rocket Rod Murray will accompany, with the uber suave (by his unique standards anyway) Taariq on bass and Danilo on drums. It is not beyond the bounds of possibility that there will be a surprise guest appearance by Captain Chaos himself. Just sayin’.  TW

From Gustavo Moreno

hey there !!!!

I hope you’re enjoying a bit of sun after these cold nights.

The cumbias, the tex mex and more Latin popular styles are the main repertoire but we always have a funny and unexpected surprise for the night and that is what makes the gigs there special; they’re always different.

So please one more last time for this month you’re welcome to join us this saturday 30 June 9pm at CRUZAO AREPA BAR. 365 Brunswick st / Fitzroy. If you can’t make it, please tell your friends.

Also with my LATIN JAZZ DUO “Jazzures” I’ll be playing tomorrow night at “The city tiler” 115 bay st / Port Melbourne 8pm. If you haven’t been there you should haha!! another cozy,cool place with live music and good food but in the South side of the city.

Hopefully , I will see you there.


From Jan Blake

JAZZ on MAIN 1st  floor  106 Main St, Lilydale  (opp Railway Station, upstairs between the Bike Shop)
8.00pm til 11.00pm $10pp
Coffee and biscuits incl.  NO BAR Lounge environment Dance Floor. 0411 342 337

I have had huge interest in Kunjani coming to JoM. I would recommend early arrival to secure a good seat ! We are really looking forward to this Afro/Jazz Group. !!

Taariq, Carol, Rod & Danilo at the Grand Sat 30th

I have  a  gig  coming  up  soon. I’ll be  playing   jazz   bass  with a   cool vocal  combo: Carol (voice ) Rod Murray (piano) Taariq (electric bass) Danilo Martelli (drums )  at The Grand Hotel in the city.. Just a reminder – 6.00pm start.  Saturday June  30th 2012.

Please come along  if you  want  to  hear  some swinging stuff such as Ella  F., Sarah Vaughan and  Billie Holiday.

The Grand Hotel is on the corner of Spencer Street and Flinders Street.

Why Jazz – From Jack

From the Ed: This week I have asked Jack Morris, he of the trombone and vocal fame – Why Jazz?

I would like to tell you why I like Jazz Mainstream/Modern (not Trad). My mother used to play Piano (not professionally) so I was brought up listening to swing type music during my primary years. The first record I bought when I started work at the age of 15 was of Dizzy and Bird playing  “Shurnuff” and on the flip side Sarah Vaughan singing “Loverman”.

At this time I took up the Trombone in the Village Band where I lived, I would have rather played Trumpet but I arrived late and the Bandmaster gave me the Trombone and “You have got long arms so you can reach 7th position”. I practised hard and was in the band for 3 years. At 18 I had to join the Armed Forces and through someone knowing someone I was enlisted in the Central Band of the Royal Air Force, in Uxbridge, near London and I signed up for 5yrs.

During this time was playing in and around London. Was 2nd Trom in a “Stan Kenton” style 20 piece band for 3yrs while still serving in the airforce band. In 1953 the Band was stationed outside the gates of Buckingham Palace for the Queen’s Coronation. At the end of the year I was demobbed and returned to my home which was near to Banbury where I continued playing in a 6 piece dance band playing around the Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire area, also with Small orchestras and amateur musicals pit bands.

We emigrated to Australia in July 1968 to Sydney and played in semi-professional bands and a 17 piece big band, also at the Motors Traders Club in George St, Sydney with Night Club Band for a season and most of the Sports Clubs and RSLs in and around Sydney. In 1970 we emigrated to Palmerston North, New Zealand and played in the Manawatu Big Band and also smaller groups. In 1977 moved to Auckland and joined the Royal Australian Navy Band for 5yrs and also formed my own Big Band.

After I retired I took a brass teaching position with a private boys school teaching Trumpets, Trombones and other brass. Then formed the big band which we toured for 2 weeks in  Melbourne and Adelaide in 1993 and Sydney and Brisbane in 1995. Retiring from school came back to Melbourne and formed the Jack Morris Big Band and also playing with the Diamond Valley Big Band. Also with the Musicians Big Band.

Jack Morris


The Lunatic Soup Lounge Sunday Arvo Session

It seems that the jam sessions are going through a bit of a purple patch. Last week the Lunatic Soup Lounge saw no fewer then 30 musicians and singers get up and perform.

Highlights (for me anyway, and what would I know?) were Anne Hayres‘ rollicking version of Fly Me To The Moon, the six saxophonists who accompanied the flugelhorn – I think they took it in turns to play because there wasn’t enough room for them all to move their fingers at once, Captain Chaos calling of Mercy Mercy Mercy, which, given the number of choruses played, should be renamed Mercy Mercy Mercy Mercy Mercy Mercy Mercy – well, you get the picture… the gorgeous Risa back from Osaka (for good, apparently) singing as well as ever, Melinda smoking hot on Since I Fell For you, and Bob nailing a coupla swing tunes before the close (just after 8.00pm).

It is all getting so good, we are in danger of forgetting the trainwrecks – not entirely of course, as we still mangled a few in between the good stuff. TW

The Grand Hotel Sessions: some stats

There were 50 slots for various singers and musos in June, with 10 sessions. This involved 21 people, of whom 18 were from the jam sessions. 10 of those people had not had a session at the Grand Hotel before.

The Hotel is now paying (at their suggestion) $150 per session, and a free drink each, (whoo hoo!) Of this, we are setting aside $50 to go into a kitty, organised by POCKOTL, which will be used to upgrade equipment for the jam sessions; and each person gets $20 petrol money.

The audience is growing (albeit slowly), with some nights now attracting noticeably more Hotel Guests than friends and relatives. Friday nights generally do a bit better than Saturday nights at present. There have been several nights where the room has been full, and people have sat in the Library, and several nights where people have come in, and stayed for the whole session. Feel free to develop your own theory as to what works best!

What’s On at The Grand

Friday Night: People Get Ready: The irrepressible Ruby Rogers, accompanied by her regular crew, will be swinging from the chandeliers again, with a whole load of new songs, in front of the usual rent-a-crowd (aka Joe), all her friends who haven’t heard her sing before, and anyone else who wanders by. She packed the joint last time, and I would expect her to do it again. If Captain Chaos makes a surprise guest appearance, it would not be the first time…

Saturday Night: The Sublime Miss Smiff: Annie Smith accompanied by Daigo Nakai (bass and inscrutability) Simon Atkinson (drums and stuff) the debonair Mr Curtis (piano and debonairness). If Captain Chaos makes a surprise guest appearance, it will probably be the second time this week.