Port Fairy Jazz Festival

And what of the Port Fairy Jazz Festival weekend?

A good time had by all. Quite a few regular and occasional jammers were seen wandering the streets of a windy but sunny Port Fairy. Only their fourth Festival and this is well established on the annual roster – probably the biggest Festival in country Victoria already.

Annie Smith, sporting three broken legs, a suntan, and a cheerful attitude was there. So was the Jess Dams Quartet, Breakout, and surprise hit of the Festival, Jack Morris’ Port Phillip Showband who put up a cracker of a set – acceptance for the Newport Jazz Festival confirmed. Festival regulars such as Ron Anderson, Roger Clarke and Sarah Maclaine all shone. Of course there was some rubbish as well, but we weren’t responsible for all of it…

Jess, Mac, Peter and meself put in a fund raiser at Narrowong on the Friday night – they budgeted on selling 30 tickets and ended up selling 70 – Jess had a great night and they have asked us back.

Jess Dams – fund raising in Narrowong before the Festival

Inverloch Jazz Festival news

E mail below, received from the Inverloch Committee – click on the link to get to their website. Inverloch has a well earned reputation as a friendly and well-run Festival – Jam session attendees playing at the Festival will include Roger Clark, Annie Smith, and a bunch of others. The Captain, meself, and Ivan the bass will be playing for Katerina Myskova

Hello all you jazz lovers,
I have attached some information about next year’s Inverloch Jazz Festival in the hope that it could be passed around to those who may be able to join us for some great jazz over the March long weekend in 2020.All the information jazz enthusiasts need is now on the Inverloch Jazz Festival website:  inverlochjazzfestival.com

Cheers,Carolyn Nield

Inverloch Jazz Festival Committee

Some of the Guilty Parties

Ben Stewart, guitarist

Steve Bray, drummer

Katerina Myskova

Salah, regular drummer
Fermin, guitarist, negotiated the Junktion deal

Pony Tail Pete, bass, Annie looks on
Jack and his slush pump
Sam Izzo, pianist, concentrating hard
Julian, floot, with a microphone up his nose?

The divine Miss Smith, who forgot her hairbrush
The inestimable Captain Chaos

Sunday Jazz at The Junktion Hotel: Well,that was a surprise….

I almost didn’t go. What the hell, rocked up anyway, as I had promised Mistress Smith that I would come for the last Featured Singer series of the year (see report below).

The jam sessions have been predictably unpredictable of late … this one featured some new faces (welcome Britta the bass), some returning faces (Jane, where ya been?), some startling improvers, (Dave No Nickname on bass), some returning Jammers (Kay Young de Darwin in fine form, great to see you again), rather more audience ordering ridiculously large meals and staying all afternoon… and some fine music making/mangling/take your pick.

Featured Singer (and wardrobe mistress)Mistress Annie Smith sang a fiendishly difficult set that put Gentleman John Curtis right in his comfort zone – standout was Take Five, which is the first time in living memory anyone has attempted a 5/4 tune (other than when the rest of us were playing in some other tempo…) Annie craftily avoided some of her more entertaining/less intellectual songs so we will have to ask her back to do another set…

Rhythm section of the week: Drummers win by a country mile: Bill Swannie, Salah and Alan Smith all good, Andre a late arrival but just as good too.

Soloists: Laurie played beautifully, and nailed it, Keith was his usual excellent self, and they both paired well with the Captain .

Singers included Jane with a top swing set, Brian Fly Me To The Moon, Stormy Monday, Angel Eyes and Kevinwas there but elected not to sing. Kay Young sang as well as ever, Ann Hayres arrived later, but hadn’t sung before I left, probably so I wouldn’t be able to take the mickey. She is always good.

It was entertaining stuff. The good Captain got so excited he forgot to call his customary five bar fours, or indeed create any chaos at all. So will anyone turn up next session?

Pre Christmas Bash: Sunday 16th December

This week… 16th December, with an earlier start time of 3.00pm. For those that want to, we suggest we stop for a meal at 6.00pm  or thereabouts. The food is good, and the portions are enormous.

Indications are, that despite the bigger turnout last week, even more people will be coming for the Bash. The skeleton staff at Bendigo Towers a rereasonably confident that the afternoon will prove to be a disaster,in the finest traditions of the Melbourne Jazz Jammers.

Look out for…

Jammers attempting to play jazz – that will never work, we all prefer the occasional train-wreck.  Audience members are advised to ignore this, talk loudly and preferably indulge in malicious gossip instead. We all have our strengths…

Complete bluddy strangers deciding to turn up for the first time and expecting to play most of the afternoon…. or complete bands doing the same (it has happened before…)  We will attempt to get everyone a spot. Dodgy Dave has been warned we might run a bit late.

Of course it is always possible that almost no-one will turn up at all, in which case we will have a marvellous time anyway…

The Bash has always been a chance for new, old, decrepit and lapsed jammers to get together and sneer at the current crop. As you love a bit of scurrilous gossip (who doesn’t?) this is a great opportunity to get on the bandwagon, meet old friends, possibly wish you hadn’t,and if so inclined, blow the tits off yer fave toon or three.

Be there!

Next Jam, this Sunday 16th December, 3.00pm start,

The Junktion Hotel, 99 High Street, South Kew – the Hotel is on the corner of Kew Junction. Public parking is available on Studley Park Road, or behind the Mercedes dealer/behind the High Street Shops off Fenton Street from High St, Kew.

Next week: a review of the Year that was. Reputations will be ruined, riots reviewed, repeat offenders identified, prizes awarded. 


The Next Session at the Junktion Hotel: Featured Singer Annie Smith

Yup, we are running another series of featured singers, starting this Sunday with Annie Smith, who may or may not wear her little red bonnet, accompanied by Gentleman John Curtis and I am not sure quite who on double bass.


Annie Smith (this photo from the Inverloch Jazz Festival) will be selecting a coupla brackets of songs from her eclectic rep. in her own discursive style.

Xmas Jam 3 Dec 2017

By Taariq Hassan

The last jazz Jam of the year 2017 came and went with a bang.

A good turnout embraced the temperamental weather that Melbourne’s end of year December festivities offers and enjoyed some more: very loud drum solos; find a key singing; wandering tempos; lost chord changes and hackneyed show tunes and ancient standards being mangled yet again. Continue reading →

Twas brillig, and the slithy toves did gyre and gimble in the wabe

Which neatly sums up the quiet little Jam Session that took place last Sunday. Plenty of opportunity to gyre and gimble, and none missed. A smaller bunch of jammers than usual (17) concocted a variety of tempo, and tones. And then had them altered at random.

All of which made for the usual gossip-mongering over a refreshing social lubricant, munchies from Glen, and the early departure of several rather good musos.

And the orchestra played on… Continue reading →

The Royal Standard Hotel: Fridays sorted

The Divine Miss Smith and the polytonal Jason Chalmers did not disappoint. This week, Susie returns to the fray, after a protracted break, and the usual crew will be there in support.

Susie with the Captain Chaos Quartet, The Royal Standard Hotel, 333 William St, 7.00pm to 9.30pm, Friday 23rd June 2017

Stick to the black notes, they’re cheaper…

What’s On: Friday Night Live at the Royal Standard Hotel

The Royal Standard Hotel: Annie Smith

Singing this Friday at the Royal Standard Hotel, quite possibly starting at 7.00pm, and with all her charts organised. If you wish to see this rare phenomenon, do drop in. Luis (saxophone) will be playing the entire night in Spanish, Eija will be keeping us in order on bass, Bill Swannie will be playing some ace bossa, and I will be silly as a wheel at the keys. Continue reading →

The Royal Standard Hotel: Katerina runs Hot, Annie Smith to come

Katerina’s second set was even better than the first – she called some horrendously difficult toons, and Chico and Kip swung all night. The Captain played smooth, and a goodly crowd turned up.

This week, Annie Smith is back in town – known for her stylish banter, and ability to reinterpret arrangements at the drop of a hat. Accompanied by Dave Taylor (double bass), Greg Appleton (drums) Captain Sensible (saxophone) and meself (confused, probably)