(from 1st May)
Strolled into the Lizard Lounge on Sunday, about 15 minutes late, to find the jam session in, well not quite full swing, but definitely on its familiar trajectory from the sublime to the ridiculous, stopping most stations in between. 18 musos and singers combined to make a busy afternoon of ballad mangling, blues bashing and bossa bungling, interspersed as ever, by Captain Chaos’ careful orchestration of … well, mayhem really.
Soloists: Props to the aforesaid CC, who had survived two nights at the Grand Hotel playing songs he really didn’t know to packed houses, and still had energy to burn at the Lunatic Soup Lounge. Frank played guitar all afternoon, there being three other bassists in the house. Stan Van something or other came to his first jam in about three decades, and has lost none of his touch, followed by Andrew and then Avi. Bob, then Gentleman John Curtis (piano) provided the cerebral moments, Ali stepped up a notch or three on the silver sax, and Fred’s bongoes have clearly been very naughty, ’cause they got a right old smacking all afternoon. Peter Cole put in the briefest of appearances (did you play? I must have blinked an d missed it…). Dean and Il Duce Glen traded sticks and brushes. And the sublime Louis mellodicated like he had never been away.. great to see that beaming face again.
Singers: newcomer Juliane (singer from Koln) was persuaded to a lively performance even though she had just come to check it all out. Hopefully, she will try it again. Anne Hayres, recently out of surgery got up and proved you can’t keep a good one down. Quite how she managed this with a metal brace in her mouth the size of a Torana LX gearbox, but not as neat a fit, is a mystery. That should have been triumph enough for one arvo, but then (gasp!) Lisbeth stepped up to the plate for The Old Country, followed by When Sunny Gets Blue, both of which she absolutely nailed. Great to see her singing again. Even Ali crooned a couple of numbers in there somewhere.
The afternoon wore on: Blast from the past Marion sauntered into the bar, and took over on piano – again she seems to have stepped up a notch. By the time I left, Richard was itching to kick it along, and he could still be there, pounding the smouldering remnants of an ageing stage piano.
An appreciative audience, and a standard of music that, at times was really quite something. We are working on that, and should have it back to normal by next week.
Where I shall hope to see you?