With over 12 years involvement with Melbourne Jazz Jammers I have found that there is more to the sessions than the music.
Firstly, they offer the opportunity to network with fellow musicians. Out of this has come the formation of many ongoing groups that have gone on to gig around Melbourne and at various country festivals. This has been my own experience with the band
“Breakout” which started from a phone call to me from Peter Ryan over 6 years ago. Peter had known me from his occasional appearances at the jam session. From time to time the band has dipped into contacts through the jam sessions to replace players.
Then there are the surprise drop ins from interstate and international visitors to Melbourne. I can remember some superb musicians over the years. The German guitarist, the Canadian tenor saxophonist, the Russian alto saxophonist, the two Japanese trumpeters, Luis, the Spanish soprano saxophonist, the Japanese pianist, the Belgian vocalist, the Sydney drummer, the Queensland vocalist and the list goes on.
As well there are the new overseas arrivals to Melbourne who use the jam sessions as an initial foray into the Melbourne Jazz scene. The Columbian Pianist who went on to do Paris Cat gigs, ade ishs who has become one of Melbourne’s top jazz pianists, Mihoko the Japanese tenor saxophonist, Sebastian the French drummer, and Danilo, the Italian drummer are but a few examples of the fine musicians we have met through the jamming experience.
Not to mention the ongoing friendships that have been formed
Hopefully, nothing will have changed when the jams are back in full swing after this crazy pandemic.