Jam – What Jam?

Well, who needs a bass player anyway? Or a drummer? I cannot remember the last time a jam session stuck so resolutely to the upper register, but no matter, we had an afternoon of singers – Miss H, Miss K, Miss Amy, Miss Smiff,  I think I have missed everyone, other than Scott and Buddy…. Whatever, Miss Smiff played drums most of the afternoon, in a manner that goes a long way to explaining why the music was so good: especially when the Captain called fours and she managed the percussive equivalent of raising two fingers. More eloquent than elegant.

Speaking of elegant, Curtis was his usual self at the keys, although shaded at last perhaps, by Lissette with a fine walking bass line; and Ben’s rhythm playing on guitar complemented the whole beautifully. Not bad solos either.  Lee (trumpet) and Marion (recorder) traded licks for a while, and the rest of us mainly mucked about, and mangled what we could…

By way of diversion, Mark was showing edited highlights of his recent parachute jump between numbers. I have always though (fondly) that several of the jam sessions regulars were slightly demented, but Mark is now officially an out and out lunatic, with the video to prove it. Strewth!

What’s on at The Grand

Last week, Anne Hayres entertained on Friday, for a crowd that seemed more intent on gossip than listening at times. Risa had another good crowd on Saturday, and entertained them as only Risa can. More please.

This week, Ruby Rogers is belting it up again on Friday 26th October. Judging by the sequins littering the carpet last time, almost anything could happen. She has a bunch of new ballads to try out, as well as reprising her recent recording. Avi Ganesan on bass, Tom “Snooze” Doublier on drums.

Saturday 27th October, and Amy Jaulin will be giving the tonsils a workout. A range of jazz ballads and up tempo numbers, worth a visit just for the high notes and the false eyelashes… Andrew “smooth as” Lye takes over bass for this one.

So You Would Like a Session at The Grand?
Stats for October: we will have used 8 singers, 6 bass players, 3 drummers and 3 pianists this month. 19 of the 20 have previously attended jam sessions. 2 had their first session at the Grand. There are currently 14 singers interested in a Grand Hotel Session, as well as 8 bass players, 5 pianists, and 6 drummers, and 6 soloists.

Organising two line-ups a week is a little taxing. The aim is to put together a singer, drums, piano, bass and a solo instrument to play three sets..We are trying to introduce new players from the Jam Sessions as much as possible, mixing them up with the more experienced musos. Get in touch with meself or Col at the Leinster jam and we will do our best. Good opening lines include “I was playing at the Leinster and it occurred to me…” because we should all encourage the jammers; although you could try “I have a 19 year old niece in showbiz and…” If that doesn’t work, you could try “I am a 19 year old niece in showbiz and… ” .

‘Jazz Notes’ at Eltham and Brunswick

‘Jazz Notes’ at Eltham and Brunswick Great news: we’ve just learned that we’ll be playing at the Eltham Jazz, Food & Wine Festival in February 2013.

In the mean time, we have two Sundays (28 Oct and 4 Nov) to go at Bar Oussou.

A few new pics at: http://www.jazznotes.net.au

The line-up will be: Juliane Pasternak (vocals) Ann Craig (flute) Kevin Blaze (guitar) Andrew Eames (bass) Rob Mercer (drums)

Sun 7 Oct 2012, 4-7pm
Bar Oussou, 653 Sydney Road, Brunswick

Meanwhile, back at the ranch

Well, I wouldn’t know what was going on, but you have to start somewhere, apparently.

And finish up at the Gold Street Gossip Shop Municipal Tearooms for a Sunday Arvo  jazz picnic.

Which was, as picnics should be  was a  lavish spread: delightful concoctions from singers Kay, Chelly, Melinda and the mercurial Angie/Eadie – ain’t she all growed up.. Savoury treats from Captain Chaos and his cohort of saxmen,  all laid out on a blanket of rhythm from Ben (g) Stan then Adam (b) and Gentleman John and Bob on (p).

Miss Smiff, divine as ever,  turned up late and complained she couldn’t hear the piano. She normally complains that she can hear the piano  so this was a pleasant change..

And a fine audience to boot, comprising as ever the thirsty , the tone deaf, the lightly medicated and the curious. And the very curious, but they are usually in the other bar. If any audience member reads this, and considers they are not covered by the above description, I can report that there was one good looking, young, charismatic and talented audience member. It must have been you…


What’s On at The Grand

Last week saw Juliane strut her stuff with the Italian Mafia, ably abetted by Andrew Lye on bass and Captain Chaos himself. The Deutsche Wunderkind singing better than ever.

Saturday turned up quite a surprise: Ashley flew in from Wangaratta, and was joined by Miss Kay on backing vocals – blew me away, and I daresay the Captain as well, judging by the raised eyebrows and the grin on his face. Drew an appreciative audience too.

This week, The John Curtis Slightly Small Big Band featuring Ann Hayres on vocals but I am not quite sure who else will stomp it up on Friday 19 October. John has the happy knack of getting good combos together, and a night of smooth jazz is in store.

On Saturday 20th< October the glamorous and talented Risa is back for what promises to be a huge night. Now I have said that there will probably be an audience of five, but if you are one of them, you are in for a treat. The backing line-up is Jeremy (double bass), Simon Atkinson (drums) and meself on piano. There may be a rare appearance by Captain Chaos. Well, if not rare, at least lightly toasted..