Captain Chaos goes bush

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Ben the Bouncer in full swing – Michael Findlay and Peter Ryan
are hiding in this photo, but they were still guilty…

And some of us fall for it… so there we were, at Captain Sensible’s bidding, dragging the dusty out of a motley collection of shooting brakes, charabancs and pickup trucks, taking over a muddy old corner under the trees at the Stables. Which is, as you would expect, an open air pizzeria in Malmsbury, set back from the old Calder, these days little more than a Boulevarde of broken drains… Continue reading

Jam Session News: Well, we had fun…

Glen was looking a little troubled when I wandered, late, into the Lunatic Arms Jazz Division Headquarters – try escaping St Kilda when the Jazz Festival and you’ll find out why I didn’t get there at 4.00pm on the dot as planned..

Ah well, the A Team all away at Hall’s Gap pretending to be real musicians, leaving just the loafers (us) to fiddle about for a while… and what fun it turned out to be – opening stanza, newbie Matt on drums, left early, possibly with bleeding ears, to be replaced by the irreplaceable Monsieur Sebastian, who took the threat of an even louder drummer quite seriously before settling down to an afternoon of fine music in the company of :

Peter on piano trying out an unrehearsed chart for the first time ,
Another Peter on bass,
Kay de Darwin on tonsils giving the songbook a real workout,
Mauriccio and Anita on guitar,
…and a bunch of others, meself included

Fifteen musos on a day when the regulars are away is quite remarkable. The afternoon ended in a fine “sod it, why not moment?” with Fermin, Robert and Mauriccio all on guitars, and a whole bunch of musos murdering, and I do mean murdering Route 66.

Sometimes, moving the prima donnas to one side lets a whole bunch of others get a chance to shine. And shine they did. Me, I just propped up the bar and enjoyed it.

Nice one, lads

Next week’s Jam will see the return of the Halls Gap Heroes, all of whom played brilliantly, I am told. And the Colonel will be back from not falling off a mountain, looking disgustingly fit and tanned, and if you want to be part of the schemozzle, just turn up around 4.00pm.

220bpm indeed!
TW

Reeding, Writhing and Rhythmatic…

Reeding, Writhing and Rhythmatic…

Madge from Altona had a busy day. Taking her usual bus from Altona West over the creaking Westgate and on into the seamier parts of Collywobble, where all the men are one eyed, and their womenfolk have less  than three teeth, has always been an exhausting adventure; but this Sunday she  found the Gold Street Tearooms and Gossipshop so full that she could not even get a seat, ( the double doors to that august establishment offering  no easy passage to someone of her stature.)    So, sitting outside, wreathed in the acrid fumes of a rollie, she contented herself with listening to the strains of what could pass for jazz on a dark night, wafting from the Tea Room Orchestra.

She perceived some discontent amongst the orchestral assembly, there being no fewer than 22 changes of personnel as the afternoon wore on. Finally, as the red glow of her 15th rollie arced across the street, she rose from her now severely deformed chair, and with barely a discernible indentation in the tarmac, remounted her bus with every intention of returning it to Altona West before the indigent Altona Bus Lines staff had noticed it missing. Which they hadn’t due to three of them being unable to count, and the other 14 not giving a rat’s in the first place.

So, the busiest jam in a very long time, and some damn good music: eight sax players, two pianists, two percussion, three bass players, a flute,  mellodica, guitar  and three singers – even the Captain admitted to being tired at the end of it all.

Props to The Captain (six bar fours anyone?) Keef, Ali, Rod, Jeff, Peter, Aaron and Roger the Dodger for some the sax battles; Rob Murray for some great piano, Louis the Fly for his usual eclectic mix of mellodica, Stan, Taariq and Kariss for playing bass with some very dodgy charts and in some cases, no chart at all, Don (guitar) and Natalie (flute and small child) , Fred and  Danilo on percussion,  Nicole, Julian and Lisbeth for singing, and meself for remembering at least that many names.

Which means I have forgotten Al Papa Jazz. No easy task, but he was in a class of his own again. . At least he turned up looking resplendent in his second best outfit. Somewhere in Moonee Ponds there is a beige Datsun 120Y with no seat covers.

A number of people have asked after Hortense. It would be more  sensible to ask before.
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