Welcome to the Melbourne Jazz Jammers

This is the place where musos and audience alike can get together to share the joy, passion and talent that is the Melbourne jazz scene. Here you can find news of the current Jazz jamming and other jazz items on the menu.

Melbourne Jazz Jammers sessions will resume some time in January 2014. They are held on Sundays from 4:00pm at the Leinster Arms Hotel, 66 Gold Street, Collingwood.

A Brief History The Melbourne Jazz Jammers formed as a diverse group of jazz lovers following the closure of the much Loved Dizzys Jazz Club, Richmond 21 November 2006.  Cast into the wilderness,  jazz musos and jazz lovers have moved through a succession of venues since, including The Night Cat, Onederland, Ramage Bar, la Pena, The Glasshouse and The Royal Standard Hotel. This site is to commemorate our journey, share pictures and stories, publish details of current jamming venues and gigs and be whatever the diverse group of Jammers wish.

Jammers News Jazz Jammers has a weekly write-up of all things jam related which informs interested people of events, CD launches, jam sessions, reviews of past sessions, promotes events being put on by Jammers, encourages people to get involved in live performance and provides an informative inclusive and friendly network for musicians and followers of jazz

To subscribe – email with ‘subscribe’ in the subject line to

melbournejazzjammers@gmail.com

Castlemaine Jam back in Business Jan 5th

The renovations are well under way at The Comma, so publican James Evans would like to keep the Mainstream Jazz Jam going throughout the silly season.

Who are we to argue? As long as there’s a quorum and a smidgen of decorum, we’re ready to flip, flop and fly.

Come on down to the hippest jazz scene in Hargraves Street, Castlemaine, on Sunday 5 January at 3.30pm for more of the music that made 2013 such a blast.

Ken

The Grand Hotel develops taste in Jazz: The Last Hurrah

After nearly two years The Grand Hotel has decided to suspend the jazz. Or to put it another way, you are all sacked. So this Friday sees the Last Hurrah – a short set from Ruby Rogers, with Dean Constable, meself, the incomparable Doug Kuhn, and saxaphone maestro Damian Aitken, followed by as many of the singers and musicians who have played there getting up and taking turns (nicely, children!) to play all the tunes that nearly made them famous.

All jammers are encouraged to come along and join in – the Captain has arranged some light refreshments – and celebrate what has been a remarkably successful residency, first inspired by Kaye “one note samba” Young, who has also provided the PA system as well as as some of the longest endings in any form of jazz.

Highlights (for me anyway) have been:

Risa: invited half of Melbourne Uni’s Japanese students, and got three quarters of them to pack the joint – the biggest turnover the RAB bar has had since it opened 15 years ago. Standing room only in the Library!

Amy: Getting applause for starting a song, as well as at the end of it. Consistently our biggest crowd puller.

Anne Hayres: the biggest improver, and whose performance I have always enjoyed.

Gentleman John Curtis: I keep trying to pinch his exquisite phrasing, he keeps coming up with new ones.

Bronwyn: Has been in the audience more often than anyone else, and is an astute judge of performance.

Bruce Constable: the best of the drummers. Came down from Sydney and smoked it every time.

Dame Nellie Melba was unable to receive a prize as she failed to turn up despite repeated “comeback” promises.

Ruby Rogers: started like a windmill with a sequin problem, has developed some serious talent.

Ange Strickland: utterly gorgeous, and a gutsy singer to boot.

The Divine Miss Smith: for telling the best jokes and singing the best songs.

Frank and Andrew Lye, for both dropping in at short notice and saving our bacon.

And of course, Captain Chaos for all the hard work, entertainment, calling of fours at the most awkward moments, and encouragement for less experienced players.

And me, for enjoying (almost) every minute of it.

So, what next?

At last count, I had around 80 musicians and singers listed as having played at the Grand, plus quite a few who would have wanted to. The Friday night format has resulted in a significant improvement in the quality of music played on a Sunday. So it ought to continue.

We are currently exploring a couple of options for an alternative venue for Friday night. If anyone has any suggestions (other than the Strangled Ferret, Altona West) send an e-mail to melbournejazzjammers@gmail.com

Meanwhile, Gold Street Gossips On

Turned up rather later than usual, so had missed a few of the early cock-ups. Fortunately a lively turn-out of musos managed to repeat most of them for my benefit, so I didn’t miss much. Saxaphones the order of the day, although we seemed to have quite a few good bass players as well.

One of the joys of a jam is to sit back, blithely ignore the music and listen to the jammers instead. So, in between the cricket on the telly, and before the jam had spluttered to not so much a conclusion as a break in hostilities, in its usual manner, the world was put to rights over a glass of Carlton Daft and a bowl of Glens Fat Chips .. there can be no better to way to completely waste a Sunday afternoon . . .

Is Solar Worse than a Zombie? Zombies may be all the rage with today’s yoof; but they have never had to sit through a rendition of Solar, as poor Sam Izzo (piano) did. And just like Zombies who never quite die even though you think they should, this unutterably boring dirge keeps coming back. If you are not familiar with it (lucky you) it has about two chords, and even though it is quite slow, you cannot get away from it. No-one knows what possessed the Captain to call it, certainly not Sam who otherwise played some great stuff.

And dat, as they say in the talkies, is the news from Sleepy Hollow.

See ya next week

TW

The Castlemaine Jazz Festival: June 8th and June 9th 2014

The Website should be up by mid to late January, whereupon if you feel the urge to log on and pre-purchase your ticket, don’t fight it. One of the ideas being floated is having a jam session, so that anyone who plays can get up and join in, even if they have not registered with a band.

Whaddya think?

At Dizzy’s Tues 17th Dec

Tuesday, 17 December

Jazz Catz

The Jazzcats is a musical group that has been delighting Melbourne audiences since 2007. The current line up is a quartet of accomplished musicians who’s love for jazz has drawn them together to play some classic standards. There’ll be plenty of toe tapping numbers from the beloved swing and Latin repertoire, and moments of fragile romance with some favourite ballads.

Vocals: Helen Corney, Piano: Andrew Tulloh, Double Bass: Peter
Simondson, Drums: Branko Kezerle.

Start Time: 8:00 PM
Entry Fee: $14.00/$10.00

Standing Tall at Dizzy’s 14 Jan 2014

Hello fans of “Standing Tall”

Here is more exciting news about the band. Thanks to your excellent support at our last gig at Dizzy’s Jazz Club, we have secured another engagement there on January 14th, 2014.
But the most exciting part is that not only will the excellent young funky Melbourne pianist, Adam Rudegeair be playing with us again, but the drum chair will be filled by Niko Schauble. (Both of our regular drummers will be away on holidays.)
Niko is regarded by many as one of the finest and most creative jazz drummers in Australia. Beginning his career in Berlin, he has played with the likes of Paul Grabowski and Steven Magnusson and just about every other notable Australian artist as well as many international visitors. It is truly a great privilege for Standing Tall to play with such a jazz luminary.
So put it in your diary. Dizzy’s is at 381 Burnley Street, Richmond. For dinner bookings ring 9428 1233.
I will send you a reminder closer to the date.
All the best for Christmas and the New Year from “Standing Tall”!
Stan

Next Friday at The Grand

Ruby Rogers will be singing, with a guest appearance by Damien on sax, followed by as many musicians and singers as we can get from those who played at the Grand this year, for a bit of a party. Chelly, Buddy and Ange all have other gigs and Risa is in Japan, but Anne Hayres, Amy Jaulin, Sevil Sabah and Celeste have said they will be there, and Gentleman John Curtis has promised to lend a bit of decorum to proceedings later on..drummers, bassists, pianists and soloists all welcome. Ruby starts at 5.30, chaos ensues at 7.30 – you don’t need to book or anything, just turn up!

Grand Hotel, cnr of Spencer and Flinders Street, Ruby Rogers and Damien, with TW, Dean Constable and Doug Kuhn, 5.30 – 7.30 followed by the Captain Chaos All Star Orchestra, Friday 13th December

Castlemaine Jazz Festival

Now confirmed as June 9th and June 10th 2014. We have had a good turnout of very capable locals putting up their hands to assist. The Website is due to launch in January, and hopefully we will be taking band registrations shortly thereafter. At present, it looks like there will be around 10 venues and, hopefully, around forty bands participating. It is starting to look like Castlemaine people are getting on board with this one.