It’s a Mess!

One cannot but express a begrudging admiration for the myriad new ways that people at the jazz jam can come up with fresh approaches to ruining some half decent songs from the old new real fake book. Despite years of musical training and study, or almost none, the aficionados of the sheltered workshop for the musical dyslexics at the Leinster Arms are the true maestros of musical train wrecks. Continue reading →

The Castlemaine Jazz Festival: June 10th – 12th 2016


All of a sudden, the Festival is getting closer. We now have some ridiculously good bands booked to appear, and some real crowd pleasers (Dr Crask and His Swingin’Elixir would be the most fun band I have sat in with for quite some time).

The Castlemaine mob is organising two promotional sessions: one with Low Down Big Band at MLC. and the other at the Arts Open Festival in Castlemaine in March – if any singer fancies a trip to the Goldfields and a couple of hours singing, drop us a line, we have a spot spare. Messrs Kuhn, Sayers, Chaos and TW will be playing, and getting the word out about the Festival.

What’s On . . .

Bird’s Basement
Opens 1st March – a real boost to the established venues such as Dizzy’s (new menu), The Paris Cat (ambience in spades), Uptown (Fitzroy groovers) and Rubys Music Room. Check out their “what’s on” page for some pretty classy acts…

Rubys Music Room

Lisette Payet is playing a regular Monday night spot at Ruby’s Music Room, and reportedly pulling a goodly crowd. Lisette has almost nothing going other than outrageous talent, good looks, personality, musical chops and the ability to engage an audience. Might be worth a visit?

Paris Cat
Lots of good stuff here: shameless plug for Adam Rudegair with the Bowie Project on 23rd March

Dizzy’s Jazz Club
Say g’day to Uncle Roger, he has been a great supporter of the Jam Sessions over the years, and I take back everything I have ever said about the caddish De Coverley, but only so I can use it all again…

Nichaud Fitzgibbon, Glass Moon, big bands, the Roger Clark Quartet,

and on 3rd March David Ruiz and Trumpet.

Uptown Jazz Cafe
Another goodly line-up, this one trends to more moderne jazz, always a good night out. Oehlers, Bpstretch, Magnusson et al.

Jam Session News: Well, we had fun…

Glen was looking a little troubled when I wandered, late, into the Lunatic Arms Jazz Division Headquarters – try escaping St Kilda when the Jazz Festival and you’ll find out why I didn’t get there at 4.00pm on the dot as planned..

Ah well, the A Team all away at Hall’s Gap pretending to be real musicians, leaving just the loafers (us) to fiddle about for a while… and what fun it turned out to be – opening stanza, newbie Matt on drums, left early, possibly with bleeding ears, to be replaced by the irreplaceable Monsieur Sebastian, who took the threat of an even louder drummer quite seriously before settling down to an afternoon of fine music in the company of :

Peter on piano trying out an unrehearsed chart for the first time ,
Another Peter on bass,
Kay de Darwin on tonsils giving the songbook a real workout,
Mauriccio and Anita on guitar,
…and a bunch of others, meself included

Fifteen musos on a day when the regulars are away is quite remarkable. The afternoon ended in a fine “sod it, why not moment?” with Fermin, Robert and Mauriccio all on guitars, and a whole bunch of musos murdering, and I do mean murdering Route 66.

Sometimes, moving the prima donnas to one side lets a whole bunch of others get a chance to shine. And shine they did. Me, I just propped up the bar and enjoyed it.

Nice one, lads

Next week’s Jam will see the return of the Halls Gap Heroes, all of whom played brilliantly, I am told. And the Colonel will be back from not falling off a mountain, looking disgustingly fit and tanned, and if you want to be part of the schemozzle, just turn up around 4.00pm.

220bpm indeed!

The Laika Bar

Last week, we played two nights, pulling a reasonable crowd, to hear Shimona swing the proverbials off some jazz standards, and Sevil smoothing it all out. Props to Kip Dale, who played both nights impeccably, to Jeremy Yeo, and James Osborne, two of the best drummers around.

This week Sevil Sabah is back for a run through her Inverloch set, with Chelsea Allen on drums, John Calamatta on sax, and the Haircut back on bass.


The Castlemaine Jazz Festival: June 10th – 12th 2016


Another Planning meeting for the Committee this week, and a busy agenda to be covered. This year we are aiming for semi-controlled chaos, an ambitious target but what the heck…

The closing date for band registrations, 4th March, is getting nearer, best get ya skates on…and after that, best make sure you have registered and paid as a musician – we need to get your name in soon so we can order the Neon Lights…

Bands to have signed up already include the fabulous Ade Ish, John McGill’s Undectet, the LowDown Big band, and the legendary Adam Rudegair. Who ran the jam sessions for three years, and is about the most entertaining keyboard player around.

Click here for website

BIRD’S BASEMENT: opening real soon…

Bird’s Basement Opens – Announcing Ravi Coltrane

Melbourne’s newest jazz club, Bird’s Basement, 11 Singers Lane, Melbourne will be opening on Tuesday March 1st – with the promise that they will be featuring US based jazz musicians from New York once a month. At current prices, that is a saving of $1,295 every time you go to Bird’s instead of New York to hear these guys. If you make up a party of 6, you could save $7,770 .

They will be  featuring the best of Australian jazz as well – an exciting prospect indeed, and a place I hope the Jazz Jammers will support. Click on the bleedin’ link (oh God I hope it works) for more info and get ya party boots on!

Jam Session News: and The Colonel makes a desperate plea for moolah

Some folks have said that I am much too negative and critical about the regular musical train wrecks at the sheltered workshop for the musically challenged. It has been whispered that I should realize that not everyone can cope with having their weekly attempts to ruin songs in new ways that are done to death , constantly lambasted and made into the source of mirth and derision. There is an alternative:

Continue reading →

Laika Bar – Saturday 13th February: The Captain Chaos Quartet goes international…

8.00pm to 10.30pm
Sevil Sabah sings
Sevil has had a remarkable rise to prominence, being selected for Wangaratta Jazz Festival after only 2 years of singing jazz, soul and blues. A voice to die for!

· Sevil Sabah (Turkye) vocals
· Ted Woollan (UK) piano
· John Calamatta (Malta) Saxaphone
· James Osborne (Canada) drums
· Kip Dale (Texas) bass


… with a little Burlesque from Sahara Inferno