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.

The players included your scribe on piano and guitar. Others who contributed on the bass were Ivan, Ponytail Peter and newcomer Luke who was quite proficient on the electric bass.

Piano players were not scarce. They included Lisette who also sang some songs including “Lonely Avenue” and “ Fragile” in G minor with a nice guitar solo by your correspondent.

Sam Izzo ; Gentleman John Curtis; Malcolm and the every able Kay Cai on piano and melodica all added their flourishes on the digital piano.

Fermin, Chico added guitars to the mix and yours truly played the big red guitar.

Drummers included : Michael ; Bill; Sebastien (a.k.a The Gallic Animal from the Muppets) ;Steve Bray ; Mike ” Drum solos a plenty” Hirsch and the swinging Andre.

Reed men included : Jeff; the wailing demon on alto sax. ; Peter; Capt. Chaos; Laurie and Keith.

Marion Lustig showed us her recorder skills. She did not do a lighter fluid and matches sacrifice of her instrument to conclude her performance ala Jimi Hendrix at Monterrey. I think Glenn the publican would have taken exception to that .

Vocals were warbled by Uncle Jack ,”A Foggy Day “, Lisette as mentioned before; some refused to be dictated to by key, pitch or songs that were written after 1920’s ended.

The surprise talent came from newcomer Tom P. Fresh from sunny Tasmania with his trombone , he showed us his very accurate pitching (on an instrument that can , in the wrong hands, be like a live cat being skinned) and his swinging , concise phrasing.

Come back in 2018. We need your contribution in brass.

I ended up leaving at about 7 pm after wading through some songs that ended up being ruined twice such as the ¾ time “ Alice in Wonderland” and other hoary old chestnuts.

I wish you all the season’s greetings for the pagan consumer summer solstice and hope to see and hear from you again for a bigger and better new year of Sunday jamming at the sheltered workshop for the tone deaf and rhythmically challenged.

Chez Leinster on 19/11/17

This scribe went along armed with an electric bass and a semi hollow electric guitar to see what could happen on a Sunday at the Leinster Arms……….

The following observations were made while your correspondent played as the sole and only bassist for nearly 4 hours nonstop.

At least four drummers turned up including Michael and Bill. As a bassist I listen to the drummer while playing the song and try to torture them occasionally, or is it the other way round? 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…

The Royal Standard Hotel: Fridays sorted

Last week saw a piping hot set from Joys Njambi, and this week we are featuring the late Miss Smith, and Jason Chalmers on sax: should be good!

Annie Smith with the Captain Chaos Quartet, The Royal Standard Hotel, 333 William St, 7.00pm to 9.30pm, Friday 16th June 2017

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)

Port Fairy Jazz Festival

February 10th – 12th

This is coming up very soon – and promises to be a huge event. Amongst the regular jammers who can’t get a proper gig that weekend, will be…

The Ade Ish Trio/IshAllen Project

Anne Craig Duo

Anne Hayres with John Curtis

Annie Smith and the Bossa Boys

Breakout (Col not in a suit)

Christine Manetta with Black Pearl

David Ruiz Prado trio

G and T Jazz

Port Phillip Showband (Col in a suit..)

And Doug Kuhn in almost everything …Annie & the Bossa Boys, G&T Jazz, Not Quite Right

All the rest (around a hundred bands) are absolute rubbish, or not as the case may be. Should be a fantastic weekend.

http://www.portfairyjazz.com.au/

All Bashed Up…

A spiffin’ little light luncheon followed by no less than 40 musicians getting in on the act – making this the busiest jam session since the mid 19th century Balkan Wars, or possibly even before that., I wouldn’t know.

How sensible of Il Duce to arrange some nice weather so we could sit outside, gossip over an occasional social lubricant, and completely ignore the annual Bash going on inside. And there was plenty to ignore – 40 musicians got in on the act,

Due to the usual misunderstanding, about 39 of them appeared to be behaving quite inappropriately by playing music that could be misconstrued as jazz, if you weren’t paying attention and had more pressing matters on your mind. Splendid!

Highlights included Annie Smith handing out silly hats, wearing one herself and behaving decorously, as she always does…

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and the Captain in fine form – he managed to ring the changes so smoothly all afternoon. And the rest of us just had fun. Hopefully…

It is hard to sum up the Bash – certainly the biggest so far, and musically one of the best yet – but the music isn’t only what it is all about. Perhaps it is worth considering that there were at least seven people there who attended the original Dizzy’s Friday night sessions 22 years ago – The Princess of Cool and Keeper of the List, Rod, Bette the stateless one, Mike H the world’s quietest drummer, Gentleman John C, Col T of the Fourth Light Punjab Horse (retd) and meself.

The First Jam Session of 2017

We are planning to start up again on January 15th 2017…. by tradition, nobody turns up for the first session, so about five of us get together and have a ball. Feel free to rock up and ruin it for us…. or make it even better.

TW