The Sunday Arvo Jam Session: Serenity at the Leinster, Chaos at the Castle

Strolled into the Gold Street Gossip Shop to find the lads still setting up, Captain Chaos in absentia as he had gone to the Castlemaine Jam to show them how it is done… he enjoyed it so much, he went back the next day for a Castlemaine Jazz Festival committee meeting.

Hortense, as is her wont, was either there or not. It is a poor substitute for those heady days with the Oscar Beetroot Band at the Strangled Ferret, where they really lit the place up, in a way that only the Fire Brigade, (such handsome Boys!), could put out…Altona West has never been the same, but then, as Madge remarked only the other day, it never was.

But I digress. Umm, the Jam Session. Ah yes, I remember now, bloody good fun, with cameos from Lisette, guitaristical things from Ben, Andrew and The Reverend Kevin, an afternoon of  extended saxophonical solos from Ali and Keef, in fine form, plus his customary duets with every other soloist, Anne Craig (Floot) playing like a real musician should, leavened with some tonsil work from the Debster amongst others (Cal? Natural Woman? No chart for that one?), underscored by Stan the Bass who played, heroically, from then ’til much, much later.

John Perri turned up and left his hat. Some seriously good drumming followed by unwisely offering some ill-placed guidance to young Putna Mondrum, who as one of the more sympathetic drummers hardly needed it, but generously returned the compliment. Sebastien was unequivocally the best of the French drummers, and played some fine stuff too.

Indeed, all was going well until Melinda Traves bounced in later. Then it all went very much better. Lively and enjoyable set. The Lunatic Soup Lounge was rockin’.

Which all made for a fine afternoon’s entertainment, topped off by the tap dancer in green shoes who stepped up, laid down his board and boogied. Glen and Wilhelmina were looking on from the back bar in (a) horror) then (b) amusement before (.c) grinning like idiots and commenting that now they had seen it all, Probably right, I have never before seen green shoes at the Leinster either…


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