Monthly Archives: June 2017

Nick Polites Turns 90

Nick Polites , a much loved Melbourne clarinettist turns 90 on the 2nd of July 2017. Born in Melbourne in 1927 Nick started playing alto saxophone at 14 years of age and took up the clarinet at 16. As he wrote recently with the advent of World War 2 “ Because so many older musicians had been called up for military service, I was sought after to join bands well before I had achieved any sort of proficiency “.
Nick commenced his recording career with the Frank Johnson Dixielanders in 1951 , since then he played regularly with the Allfrey Street Stompers , the legendary Melbourne New Orleans Jazz Band in the late 1950s – early 1960s and with the Louisiana Shakers for the last thirty years and currently at their Sunday afternoon gig at the Clyde Hotel in Elgin Street Carlton where no doubt there will be much celebration next Sunday.
The Victorian Jazz Club will also celebrate Nick’s remarkable contribution to Australian jazz on Wednesday the 19th of July between 7.30 and 10.00 pm at the East Malvern RSL with Nick and the Louisiana Shakers. . In the front line Nick will be joined by Joe Pryke on trumpet , Les Fithall on trombone & vocals, Andy Symes on banjo, Peter Grey on bass and Kevin Bolton on drums – some of Australia’s most experienced musicians who will be joined no doubt by many surprise sit ins.
You don’t have to be a member to attend, everybody is welcome. Victorian Jazz Club members $15.00 and visitors $20.00. Seats are still available but bookings are advisable on 9874 8870 or on 0425 735 428.

Nevill Sherburn OAM

The contribution to Australian jazz of Neville Sherburn was recognised today in the 2017 Queen’s Birthday Honours when it was announced that Neville has been posthumously awarded an Order Of Australia Medal for services to Jazz.
Known affectionately as Mr Swaggie Neville purchased the Swaggie label from the Graeme Bell Band Co-Operative in 1954 and immediately began issuing Eps and 10” LPs of Australian jazz and from 1960 onwards he released 12” and 7” 33 & 1/3 RPM albums known as the Jazz Collector Series. These recordings were renowned for their high quality content of sound reproduction , art work and detailed cover notes and are treasured by collectors today.
As Sydney writer Bill Haesler OAM wrote shortly after Nevill’s death “ Without Nevill Sherburn there would have been very little Australian jazz recorded during the 1960 – 1980s “. This is particularly apt as major record companies lost interest in producing Australian jazz whereas Nevill continued to release Australian and overseas jazz on CD. Despite being seriously ill for a number of years Nevill continued to manage Swaggie Records culminating in the issue of two major restoration works titled Ade Monsbourgh – A Vintage Selection and Roger Bell & His Pagan Pipers – A Vintage Collection which were released just weeks before his death on the 16th of October 2015. Australian jazz is very much indebted to the unstinting work of Nevill Sherburn and it is fitting that he is recognised today.
Bill Armstrong of Bilarm Music has recently taken over the distribution of the excellent Swaggie Record CD collection which are available from Thomas’ Records in the Melbourne CBD and from all Readings Bookshops.

Andy Baylor back in Melbourne Wednesday 21st June.

Andy Baylor & His Southern Swing Band at East Malvern – Wednesday 21st June
Just a reminder that the next night of Jazz presented by the Victorian Jazz Club for 2017 at the East Malvern RSL will be on Wednesday the 21st of June between 7.30 & 10.00 pm with Andy Baylor & his Southern Swing Band on stage.
It’s been far too long since well known guitarist and violinist Andy Baylor has been a guest at the Victorian Jazz Club and on the 21st of June we will make up for that when Andy will be returning to Melbourne to play a special hometown show with a fine swingin’ band.
Andy cut his musical teeth playing old time western swing with the Dance Hall Racketeers and was the in demand guitarist with bands such as Steve Grant’s New Orleans Five, The Karl Hird Trios, Ade Monsbourgh , Allan Browne and the legendary Bob Barnard Jazz Parties amongst others.
Andy will be digging deep into his bag of Western swing classics, hot jazz instrumentals, beautiful standards and some boogie woogie and blues. The band will feature Andy on guitar, violin & vocals, Michael McQuaid tenor sax, Sandra Talty drums & vocals, Sam Lemann guitar & ukulele, Steve Teakle piano and Steve Temple double bass ( & occasional trumpet ).
A great night of jazz , western swing, ballads , rhythm & blues and boogie for dancers and listeners, not to be missed !
Come along , enjoy the jazz and spread the word !
Everybody is welcome. You don’t have to be a member of the Victorian Jazz Club to attend.
Admission : Victorian Jazz Club members – $15.00 , visitors – $20.00.
Bookings are advisable . Bookings & Enquiries : 0425 735 428 or