The Newport Jazz Festival 2nd & 3rd May 2020

Logo settled and should be on the letterhead soon.

Band Bookings: the first confirmations are coming in. We are inviting selected bands to register their interest first, then οἱ πολλοί (that includes me, and you, probably)

As a result of our recent straw poll. The bands you preferred were:

· Modal contemporary
· 14th Century plain song
· Everything in between
· Anything in a tent

And the keywords so far are:

· What?
· What, what, what?? (from a drummer) (in 3/4)
· Your Gas Bill has $742.23c owing (actually, we need to check the other side of that envelope)

Yet Another thrillingly brief description of yesterday’s Jam Session, not including the state of chips, Idaho’s loss, and the meaning of noise in music…

Well, you have to start somewhere, do you not. I have been reading about the slithy toves this week, and do not intend to pursue the matter further, there being a rather good jam session on which to report.

Where did we go wrong? Not sure, but a surprisingly good cross section of Jammers turned up, late as usual. We kicked the pill round the paddock , before embarking on a session that got better by the minute.

Sir Roger De Coverley’s dubious descendant ripped out his black sax and entertained us for a while. Quite what has come over him is still uncertain, but he seemed to do all sorts of weird stuff, like leaving space for Les Autres (see footnote) to get aboard, playing succinctly composed solos, and generally raising the tone. About time.

Of course having Ade Ish on keys helped considerably, and when we realised that (a) young Stan on bass was having a red hot go, and (b) Monsieur Bray was as good as ever on drums, a half decent jam session emerged.

Ade Ish, pianist

Jess put up a passably smooth set of jazz swing, then Peel Me A Grape. Jeff soloed a treat on that one. Not to be outdone, we had a mass saxophone section (Laurie, Jeff, Alan, Keef – kicked off by the Captain, and Jaime (de Spain) on his 3 month old saxophone with a handy take on Footprints, which besides being a Wayne Shorter toon, is easy on the ear, and quite possibly piano, although you wouldn’t think it at the time.

The afternoon passed at a dizzying pace, and the pub filled satisfyingly full – maybe a little cold weather was driving the punters in? Song of the Day (do we have one of those?) went to My Old Flame, (Ade, Alan West, Stan and Steve on drums)

Huich turned in a typically unobtrusive violin solo; and Julian, back from what he described as a four month hiatus, played some pretty sweet floot.

Hirsh arrived to take over from Steve on drums, Nelson relieved a determined not to be knackered Stan, Yuko (My Baby Just Cares For Me), Jane (East of the Sun), Carol (Minnie the Moocher) Annie (You turned the tables on Me) all pumped new life into songs we forgot to bury years ago. And then Mr Hirsh dragged him self off the carpet for a rousing take on Sunny Side of The Street. You cant keep a good man down. God knows, we’ve tried….

So … only 24 musos turned out for this one, no excuses, but it was definitely up a grade or two, music-wise. We indulged the instrumentalists manly because they were, for the first time in a long time, the stars of the show.

Next one please, can’t wait!

Footnote: Very little is known about Les Autres, and none of it is true. Les could have been a late 19th Century toothbrush salesman, but his dad wouldn’t let him. He often hangs about the back entrance to one of the many licensed premises that the Melbourne Jazz Jammers have closed down over the years, waiting for the next debacle.

The Newport Jazz Fest

Logo settled and should be out soon.

Huge response to our questions about what you want from a Festival. At least, I think that is the best way to describe a big fat zero…

At the risk of repeating myself, I will repeat myself…

What sort of a Jazz Festival would you like to see? Pick as many genres as you like, in order of preference, and email your list to melbournejazzjammers@gmail.com

clip_image001 Big Bands
clip_image001[1] Trad Bands
clip_image001[2] Swing
clip_image001[3] Bebop
clip_image001[4] Bossa
clip_image001[5] Modern
clip_image001[6] Blues
clip_image001[7] Vocals
clip_image001[8] Instrumentals
clip_image001[9] Workshops

Keywords: Be creative!

Reflecting what the Festival is about. No, Hortense, I do not have a clue either.

Suggested, but Incomplete list of keywords:

clip_image001[10] Jazz
clip_image001[11] Newport
clip_image001[12] Fest
clip_image001[13] Festival
clip_image001[14] Community
clip_image001[15] Musicians
clip_image001[16] Jam Session
clip_image001[17] Friendly (stole that one from Castlemaine, they probably don’t need it any more)
clip_image001[18] Debacle
clip_image001[19] Train wreck
clip_image001[20] Social lubricant opportunity

Send us your list of suggestions, email to melbournejazzjammers@gmail.com

– still haven’t found what I’m looking for

Sunday at the Junk: Gossip, Jazz,

The Jam Session: We foregathered so early that the Junk wasn’t even open, convened a meeting on a nearby park bench… kicked around a few ideas for a proposed jazz party that will hopefully come to fruition some time in the New Year. Not saying which New Year as we haven’t got that far.

The set up was much aided by Debbie, directed by the Captain, a few cables plugged in by meself,  Fermin set up the guitars and amps, and Russell re-assembled the drum kit, although he subsequently averred it wasn’t up to (his) standards.

A pleasant and diverse afternoon of ballad mangling ensued, with contributions from Salah then Bill Swannie on drums, a welcome return from PT Pete on bass after his Uni exams, songs from Jane, Debbie amongst others, Neil and Fermin on guitars, the Captain opened the batting for the saxophone brigade, followed by the immaculate tones of Cardinal Calamatta, and we may have persuaded Julian (floot and abacus) to join the putative Committee. Hopefully he won’t be too busy to play floot. Huich on violin. Volker back on sax.

Singer du jour was Michelle Gigliotti, in a tight set, accompanied by Kip Dale on electric bass, Bill on drums, and meself tickling the ivories. She sang a second set with Malcolm struggling with some of my dodgiest charts – my excuse is that I never used charts on any gig with Michelle anyway… and we knocked out 80 or so in years past.

Pony Tail Pete back on bass

Rod and Bette de Singapore dropped in, as you do, POCKOTL was there, and there were a pleasing number of locals in the audience. More musos than last week, and more fun too…

Featured Singers this Sunday 25th November

This next one is going to be a bit special, as Debbie and Ashley de Wang will be singing some duets – swing tunes in the main. I have heard some of their material and this should prove a real crowd pleaser

Next jam, this Sunday 25th November, 4.00pm start,

TheJunktion Hotel, 99 High Street, South Kew – the Hotel is on thecorner of Kew Junction. Public parking is available on Studley ParkRoad, or behind the Mercedes dealer/behind the High Street Shops offFenton Street from High St, Kew.

Castlemaine Jazz Festival

https://www.castlemainejazzfestival.com.au/

The website has, at last, plenty of information on the bands playing and the venues. It all happens this weekend, and whether you are thinking of going for the full four days, or just dipping in to see the highlights, including Nubya Garcia, who has already sold out her MIJF dates (the Age, Tuesday 5th June), it is about time to saddle up the nag and head North. Continue reading →

From The Leinster

Dateline Collingwood: 4.3.18

Last Sunday the Jazz Jam at the Leinster arms Hotel reached a new nadir, a point where the bottom of the barrel had been scraped so much that the bottom was gone and the tunnel to China is now complete. No one is to blame but not much can be said about it other thank goodness it is over. The sound of a cat being strangled somehow has much more appeal now. Continue reading →

AGM for Castlemaine Jazz Festival

This is coming up in a week’s time: Saturday 2nd September at 11am in the Chewton Community & Senior Citizens’ Centre, Main Road Chewton

If you are a member of the Association, you should have received a proxy form to fill in. The good Captain will be attending, naturally, and the Melbourne Jammers’ interests will be best served by giving him your proxy . If you cannot attend, please fill in the form and return it to him