The Ludicrous Arms Jam Session: ptwang, ptwang

Smooth As – what’s with all the geetars?

Managed to make it for a jam session – in the Captain’s continuing absence I even got there a bit early to help Il Duce set up. All a bit quiet for starters, but the main course soon wandered in, clutching an assortment of instruments and by about 30 minutes late we had even started kicking the ball around the paddock with a toon or two.

Early disasters (it didn’t take long) were entirely down to Sir Roger De Coverley, who had polished up his tootlefloot for the occasion, which, as it transpired was not so much an occasion as an extended set of directions for the hapless Il Duce, culminating in Sir R de C the cad, ignoring his own tempo and coming in late. Fair enough, nobody else was following his instructions either… although when they did get started, it all sounded pretty good to me.

The arvo wore on (japanese fashion label). Even Ali (sax) had a dip; and by the time Alex Yarosh, Tom McGlinn, Elliott Joe and  Chico had worked up the guitar solos, one would be tempted to say there were some fine solos going on.

Resisting the temptation, The Debonair JC, Gerald, Don and meself had a fine old time on the piano, with honours going to JC who played the rather tricky When I Look in Your Eyes without getting lost, and without giving away the fact that it had been put into a mildly easy key.

The late Miss Smith sang up a storm, Chris Manetta belted out a coupla bluesy numbers, Bruce drummed, Anton played every note he could think of, and Colonel T was in such an affable mood on bass and drums that he missed the new Doctor Who episode. Devotion to the cause or what? Meanwhile, Ivan the terrible swung the five-string basso profundo, and we all had a good time.

A quieter jam, but smooth as, and a high standard of music all made for a spiffing afternoon. If I had a dollar for every time someone asked where the Captain might be (Kyoto as it turns out) I would be richer by $4.35 cents.

The Sunday Jam, every week at the Leinster Arms, Gold Street, Colliwobble, from 4.00pm until we knock off around 7.30. See ya this week?

The Gold Street Gossip Shop : Well, that was weird…

An entire session without a bass player … leading to some mighty fine adjustments from the usual suspects, if not from a coupla unusual suspects as well.

After last week’s shenanigans, it was almost a relief to quieten down a bit, although I suspect the Captain gets more fun from creating chaos on a grander scale. An opportunity to trot through the entire canon of songswhatcolknows and a few gems amongst thetrainwrecks were to be savoured.

Notwithstanding the lack of basso profundo, some dextrous playing by Lisette (looking rather spiffin’ as she had a gig to go to after), a fair innings from the debonair JC, and Chelly going the tonk later in the arvo. All rather pleasant and even, on occasion, restrained.

It could have been the cold weather, but personally I think society is to blame.

Nobody received a knighthood, so that was nice..

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2014 Inaugural Jam Session: Musicians turn up shock

In a rare departure for Jam Sessions, several real musicians turned up, and people started playing jazz. It is, admittedly, early days, but I can’t see this radical departure from the norm persisting for too long. Oh well, ’twas fun while it lasted . . .

Not one, but two Clarks fronted – Roger and the better looking, much younger one, Rory. And between them, they made a number of others sound pretty damn good.

Props to Bishop Bennett for a long stint on both bass and guitar (not, mercifully, at the same time.) Quite how anyone can carry on a conversation, laugh his head off and still play fabulously is a mystery. The Biennett himself could not explain it.

Alternated with Jess (double bass), who wore her fingers to a frazzle trying to keep up with Chelly Parisi on Devil May Care. Um, who else: Ali of course on his silver sax, a long stint from Glen on drums, Karen deciding she would sing Amazing Grace after all, and did it nicely, Captain Chaos and Eric de Canada swapping saxaphone licks, Dylan (?) from Queensland dropping by to  play guitar, the married Sebastien on drums, Kay from Darwin in fine form, proud owner of a Yamaha Digital Electric Grand, no side car attached, and  welcome back. And Bob, who doesn’t read the newsletter, but I tell him he is mentioned, and that seems to suffice. Surprise of the day was Kevin who looks like he should know better by now, but has a smooth as voice and was a delight to listen to.

Good grief, there was even an audience: POCKOTL, Rod, Bette, and the usual slew of lightly fried locals.

All in all, a spiffin’ little jaunt, and we will do it again, always assuming someone turns up.
TW

The Brilliant but Essentially Modest Trio of Pianists hit Town

The Lunatic Soup Lounge returns to its usual self…

Probably for another 150 years, by which time, we may well have got Little Sunflower down to less than eight minutes..

Unlikely as that would seem, judging by efforts over the past few years.

Last Sunday’s Jam session started very quietly, which is what happens when no one has got their instruments out of their cases, but even so, it really looked like a dud afternoon was in prospect for a while.

The lack of musicians was soon forgotten, as more and more of the jammers turned up – tuned up and turned on.. and ended up being a particularly refined afternoon of music making. Strangely, we didn’t play Summertime, or  Autumn Leaves for that matter, but the rhythm section  (Mr T, Danilo, John, Sebastian, Anton and others) got its act together and the Captain headed a bevy of soloists (the ever improving Ali, Ann on da floot amongst others,) and Chelly headed up the tonsil section until the Divine Miss Smurf rolled in.

Mercifully, the standard was leavened by a few of the usual cock-ups, and the whole shebang was held in check by the trio of brilliant, but essentially modest pianists (Gentleman John, Bobbbb and meself). A young pianist (whose name completely escapes me, so it was probably Houdini or something like that) rather ruined the batting average by playing particularly well, and set a challenge for the guitar department who rose to the occasion and drowned him out to save the rest of us any embarrassment.

So… we are going to do it all again this Sunday, and  hope you turn up too!
TW

Next time, bring a chainsaw, ear plugs and a hard hat…

    I have noticed that it is getting harder and harder to move around  the Lizard Lounge of a Sunday afternoon. Either the place is shrinking or the jam sessions are growing ever more packed. Withthat many people playing, some industrial strength jazz ensued. Top stuff, but  I am sure normal service will be resumed shortly.   In  the meantime we may be regaled with the sight of seven or eight  soloists eagerly putting the boot, chainsaw or elbow in, as they struggle to the fore. Mercy, Mercy Mercy!

    Which,. come to think of it, was a highlight of last Sunday’s effort, probably the busiest, certainly the noisiest, yet. Other moments of memorable chaos included Bill on Flugelhorn, Chelly essaying jazz singing to great effect, Jeremy bopping through the    door wearing a foppishly large cloth cap, and carrying his foppishlylarge double bass. Carol, Lisbeth, Mel and Sandro sang, Stan, Taariq, Avi and the aforementioned Frenchman played bass. After a  welcome back session from Danilo, Glen played an outstanding set on drums – if he gets too cocky about it, we will remind him of his    first jazz effort on the electronic drum set, which he will    undoubtedly deny. Bob and then Rod took over on keys, leaving me    little to do but sip on a Guinness and wonder where it was all going    to end. Eventually I started wondering when it was going to endinstead, and went home, as you do…

    I won’t mention the Captain and his big brass/woodwind section  (Keef, Tim, Alex, Ali, Bill, Aaron and Nick), and for the first timein living memory, I don’t recall any fours being called.

    Society’s to blame…

TW

I don’t like it Carruthers, it’s too quiet . . .

Well not at the Leinster this Sunday, watering hole of the loose footed, medicated, confused and/or indigent, where 21 musos and singers fair lifted the roof from 4.00pm ’til gawd knows when. The Captain was in absentia, but we all agreed that, given the chaos that enlivened proceedings throughout, he was at least there in spirit… The place was fairly heaving from the start…

POCKOTL “We’ve created a monster, and now there isn’t a seat to park your arse”. I promised not to repeat that, so I will only write it once…

The afternoon started with Frank working up a sweat trying to keep up with Xavier, sublime on piano, Bruce Constable on drums, Ken from Maldon on guitar and Jack the lad on the big T, playing some easy blues, and then  mellowed out with Debbie, accompanied by Bob, both  in fine form,  followed by Michelle and then Melinda on tonsil duties, and both of them bopping up a storm. Next up were all three of the the Xavier junior division, on piano, (classy), guitar (very classy) and, good grief, flute (first flute we have had in a while). Classier still.

Ali and Peter provided saxaphone duties, and Avi took over from the decidedly defatigable Frank, who only played for about two hours before sinking exhausted into a bowl of chips out the back (or something like that).  Sam (I think) managed to sneek past the radar but turned out to be a pretty damn competent bass player, even if we threw him a Country and Western tune for starters. He did look a little confused… Bruce and Danilo traded duties on drums, with Fred demanding more latin from time to time. Danilo announced he is leaving for Brazil on Thursday, and will be back next Tuesday. I am not sure what you can do in Brazil in ten minutes… Glen took over and absolutely nailed the bossa. All good in the splat blat and rattle department.

So: an afternoon of firsts:

First time we have played without charts, because I forgot to bring any, and so did Frank. We survived on whatever we could cadge from the memory and/or the singers.

First time we have had jammers from Shepparton, Bendigo and Maldon. Seems some of them picked up the Melband ads (http://www.ausband.com.au), and some picked up the Melbourne Jazz jammers website (http://melbournejazzjammers.com)

First time we have had people queuing at the door to get in.

Biggest audience, by quite a margin, since the Ramage days.

First time, the public bar has clapped. Good grief!

By my reckoning (dodgy, admittedly) the highest standard of music, consistently, across the whole session, since the Leinster started to go downhill (I think we have been there about 2 years)
So, what next? Well, obviously, next week should be a total debacle, always assuming anyone turns up, and if you have booked root canal dentistry, tickets for the Warrandyte Pot Tossers Annual Dinner Dance and Swap Meet, or perhaps a colonoscopy., that would clearly be more entertaining. Anyone with a modicum of common sense is strongly advised to not turn up. Although, now I think of it, that isn’t going to cut out too many jammers at all.
Ya wouldn’t be dead for quids

Ted