THIS coming weekend – 23 and 24 February 2013 – there seem to be more jazz choices than usual in and around Melbourne, and that’s not including the regular gigs which have to be factored into the equation.
One of the least publicised, and in my view most enjoyable jazz festivals is on this weekend: The Eltham Jazz, Food and Wine Festival runs from midday until 9.30pm on Saturday the 23rd and until 5.30pm on Sunday 24th. I suppose you could call it a boutique festival with all performances on two Stages in the middle of the shopping centre in Main Street, Eltham opposite the the Railway Station. It’s free, no bookings required, and the delights include The Allan Browne Quintet, Cairo Club Orchestra, Bop Kick with Julie O’Hara, B# Big Band, and The Syncopators. as well as lots of choices for blues lovers.
A very special highlight of the Festival is the traditional street march by Barry Wratten’s New Orleans Pelicans Brass Band accompanied by Amelia the stilt walker on Sunday morning at 11.30 followed by a performance on Stage I until 1.15pm when The Melbourne Gospel Singers will take over. Click here for a full programme with times.
Saturday 23 February Grumpy’s Green – 125 Smith Street, Fitzroy:
In lieu of John Scurry’s Virus which has the regular Saturday afternoon spot at Grumpy’s, “Jason Downes and Friends” will be playing. Jason will be joined by Leigh Barker, Matt Boden (Tasmanian born pianist now living in Paris) and Marc Meader (Netherlands) on drums for a fun afternoon of jazz. The session will run from 3.00-5.00pm (earlier than normal). Phone: 9416 1944
The band will be playing a mix of tunes from the 20s-50s and Jason says sit-ins and stragglers are welcome.
On Sunday 24 February Smithys Scallywags: featuring Danni Smith on vocals will be playing at the Bentleigh Club, Yawla Street, Bentleigh. Our great Melbourne jazz treasure Ian Smith has put together a wondrous show to celebrate the release of his new CD of tracks recorded over several years, some of which feature daughter Danni. He has invited all the musicians who are on this CD to take part on Sunday to help launch it. The 9 piece all-star line-up will not all be playing at once, but in a variety of combinations during the afternoon, so this will be truly a jazz extravaganza. Danni is flying down from Byron Bay to be part of the shindig. So if you’re free on Sunday afternoon, (or even if you had something else planned), this will be an event seriously to be considered. (Please note how I avoided a split infinitive there! My English teacher would have been proud.) A delicious two course luncheon is included.
There is still time to book with Diana Allen but you need to ring her on 5258 3936 by midday on Friday.
Sunday 24 February @ 4.00pm Montsalvat: Ted Vining Trio CD LAUNCH:
This concert is to celebrate the re-release of Ted Vining Trio’s 1981 Live at PBS FM . By popular demand, Newmarket Music has produced a CD of this sellout Jazznote LP recorded in December of 1981. The performance will be held in the Barn Gallery, Montsalvat, 7 Hillcrest Avenue, Eltham, and will be in memory of the Trio’s great bass player, Barry Buckley, who died in 2006.
The lineup will be Bob Sedergreen – piano, Gareth Hill – bass, Ted Vining – drums with special Guests: Alan Lee – vibes/percussion and Ian Chaplin – alto saxophone.
The MC wil be: Jim McLeod – presenter of Jazz on Saturday, on PBS , 106.7 FM from 9.00am to 11.00am (not to be confused with the Victorian Jazz Club’s long-running program, Jazz on a Saturday, which goes to air on 3CR, 855AM from 2.00pm to 4.30pm)
Tickets: $20 /$15. Bookings on 9439 7712 or at the door.
Shirazz at Queenscliff:
On Sunday 24 February Matt Dixon and his lads will be heading down to sunny Queenscliff for a jazz picnic in Citizen’s Park, Queenscliff. The Park overlooks Port Phillip Bay and is ideal for a picnic and a relaxing afternoon taking in the sea breezes and your favourite jazz tunes.
Where: Citizen’s Park, Gellibrand Street, Queenscliff
When: Sunday 24 Feb, 12:30 – 3:30pm
Sunday afternoon Feb 24th :
The New Melbourne Jazz Band will be at the Monash Hotel, 2077 Dandenong Road, Clayton, from 1.00 pm-till-4.00 pm. The New Melbourne, under leader Ross Anderson, has been one of our favourite bands for more than half a century, as well as earning an international reputation through its many overseas tours. Special Guest on Clarinet and Vocal will be Kim Rushworth.(drummer Ben Rushworth’s Dad, as if you didn’t know!)
Ross says they are all looking forward to lots of “FUN JAZZ” with Kim and Peter Uppman doing “Scat Vocals” as well as playing your requests. There is no cover charge. For bookings phone 9544 8011.