The Leinster Arms Jam session: less is more

Or more is less. One might think that after more than ten years of writing drivel about the jam sessions, there might be an emerging consensus as to what makes a session as enjoyable as this latest mangle session turned out to be.

It didn’t start well: weather as cold as a mother in law’s kiss, the Council had ripped up the pavement and put a fence round the footpath, so you couldn’t get in, Glen away, all of three desperate regulars in the front bar, and absolutely no one to keep drummer Michael Findlay company as he unloaded the drum set.

Eventually the Captain, Neil and meself set about moving tables, chairs, benches and jammers equipment into place, plugged it all in, Laurie the sax warmed up, regaled us with tales of taking a fall in the night (see footnote), and Piers turned up with his double bass. We started making a bit of noise to keep ourselves warm.

The ingredients of a successful jam? It continues to elude us, which was probably a good thing – but maybe less musos who all get plenty of space to shine at the toons they mangled has a bit to do with it. For whatever reason, it turned out a convivial afternoon, plenty of good solos from Laurie and Folker, Brian waiting patiently for a turn on the tonsils, all of us getting lost, the Captain finding some swing tunes at the back of his book. In the middle of which Jeremiah turned in some hot playing with a banjo and a trumpet, though not, mercifully, at the same time.

Highlights, you may ask? There didn’t need to be many, but the rhythm section of Findlay, Neil (guitar) Jeremiah (banjo) and Piers (double bass) put in a delightful romp (sans piano and saxophones) through a few standards, we played a serviceable Mr PC (at Volker’s request), Laurie picked out a Keith Jarrett ballad whose name escapes me, and we couldn’t decide if apologies were due to Keith or Laurie first.

A quieter session, and we all went home at 6.30 because the piano player was knackered.

Very satisfying. See ya next week?

The Leinster Arms, Gold Street Collingwood, will be back on Sunday 22nd April at 4.00pm.

Laurie’s fall: he says it was a dark night and an unfamiliar room to blame. Of course we all assumed he’d been 100% hammered. No damage done, although strangely, he played rather well.

Piers’double bass: asked him where he trained: turns out he is a self taught bass player. Struth!

Jeremiah’s trumpet and banjo: last came to a jam session at the Royal Standard Hotel. Asked him where he studied: VCA and NMIT. Not surprised.

One Comment

  1. The Keith Jarrett ballad was “Memories of Tomorrow” and, you’re right, it is rather lovely especially when played at the right tempo instead of my original up-tempo swing! Send me your email and I’ll send you a PDF.


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