‘A TRIBUTE TO JELLY ROLL MORTON’ with Kade Brown, piano;
Eugene Ball, trumpet; Chris Vizard, trombone; Howard Cairns, bass
and Ben Hendry, drums
Sunday March 31st 4.30 for 5pm at the Point Lonsdale Community Hall
Bowen Road, Point Lonsdale
AUTUMN NEWSLETTER - 2019
Clarinetist BRENNAN HAMILTON-SMITH presents
I am still discovering excellent and exciting new young jazz musicians who love
opportunities to perform classic jazz, and who, like me, want to keep this endangered species of music alive and well! My latest discovery is an amazing young man in his 20s who plays superb clarinet. His name is Brennan Hamilton-Smith and I first heard him at the Emerald Hotel in South Melbourne when Jo Stevenson had invited him to deputize for him with The Rockets, and I just happened to be there! I asked him if he would like to put a band together to pay tribute to one of his favourite jazz legends, and present a concert at Point Lonsdale. He jumped at the opportunity and nominated jazz pianist Jelly Roll Morton, one of my favourite jazz legends also, and he has since assembled a great group of Melbourne musicians who are also keen about this idea.
Ferdinand Jelly Roll Morton 1890 to 1941, was considered the first great jazz
composer and jazz pianist to receive recognition as such. In fact he himself claimed to have invented jazz! He was also a superb arranger, and a great character whose spirit shone, especially when he smiled and showed off a diamond in his front tooth! He was an important transitional figure between ragtime and other jazz styles and his band The Red Hot Peppers featured some of the best New Orleans sidemen in history.
This band in fact made jazz history, and many of Jelly’s compositions are still great favourites with jazz enthusiasts; tunes such as: After You’ve Gone; Grandpa’s Spells, I Would Do Anything for You, and Winin’ Boy Blues; and great piano solos such as Maple Leaf Rag and The Pearls. Google them and have a listen. Great stuff!
Clarinetist Brennan Hamilton-Smith is last year’s winner of The Patrick Flint Award for Musical Excellence, presented annually by the Victorian Jazz Club. Playing jazz from a young age in Castlemaine where he grew up, Brennan has since immersed himself in the classic jazz tradition, playing regularly in Melbourne with Australian jazz luminaries such as the late Allan Browne, Eugene Ball and John Scurry. Brennan graduated from Monash University in 2017 and has since travelled extensively in Australia. With a specific interest in the music of the 30s & 40s, he now leads projects exploring the music of the early jazz greats of New Orleans and Chicago, and in particular the music of the man who claims to have started it all, Ferdinand Joseph La Mothe, professionally known as Jelly Roll Morton.
Pianist Kade Brown has also been playing piano from a young age. Later he studied jazz piano at Monash University under the tutelage of Australian jazz greats such as Paul Grabowsky, Barney McCall and Sam Keevers. He plays various styles of jazz and in recent years has travelled, performed and recorded in Europe and the USA, and is already in demand to accompany international artists visiting Australia.
Trumpet player Eugene Ball has been considered a star since his emergence on the jazz scene in Melbourne in the late 1980s. I first heard him play as a teenager with Ade Monsbourgh and his father, the highly regarded jazz clarinetist Denis Ball, when he was invited to sit in on a Graeme Bell concert that I had arranged, and we all knew then that he had a great future ahead of him. Born in 1972, Eugene won a Bell Award in 2008 for Best Australian jazz composition and was awarded a Melbourne Jazz Research Scholarship at the completion of his Masters Degree in performance and composition from Melbourne University. His talent has been recognised from the start and he has performed with all the Australian jazz greats. He has always been in demand and has joined a variety of ensembles including the celebrated Hoodangers, who have represented Australia in Russia amongst other places around the world, and also Paul Grabowsky’s Australian Art Orchestra. Eugene teaches trumpet, improvisation and composition.
Chris Vizard ….. is an emerging young trombonist based in Melbourne.
Inspired by his father’s collection of Graeme Bell recordings, he decided to give
trombone a shot! This eventually took him to the USA in 2011 where he completed his Bachelor of Music, and on return to Melbourne he worked with The Cat Empire, Jo Camilleri and the Black Sorrows, and the great Barney McAll.
This new jazz ensemble is privileged to have one of Australia’s leading jazz bassists Howard Cairns accompanying them. Howard has been in demand as a bassist by most of Melbourne’s leading jazz musicians throughout my 40 years of presenting jazz. Jazz Australia audiences may recall him in many of the bands that I have presented on the Bellarine, including those of George Washingmachine, the Baylor Brothers and Julie O’Hara amongst others. Howard is an Australian jazz legend.
Finally, on drums Ben Hendry, a versatile young drummer who has been involved with musicians of many styles including Deborah Conway and The Cat Empire. A graduate of the Victorian College of the Arts, Ben has been performing around the globe with a wide variety of projects and ensembles.
This will be something very special as you can tell, and will take place at 5pm on Sunday March 31st so I do hope you will keep this date free. I also encourage you to invite any students in your family that you would like to encourage musically, to join us for this and any Jazz Australia concert. Please note the special price of tickets for students. Also remember that the earlier you book, the closer you will be to the stage, as seating is always arranged in order of booking, ‘first in best dressed’, as they say.
I’m sure that you all know by now, that the Queenscliffe Historical Museum is a
beneficiary of Jazz Australia events held at the Point Lonsdale Hall. The Museum’s Catering Corps do a wonderful job providing us with beautiful finger food throughout the evening and also excellent wine at below bar prices! They make approx. $3000 for the QHM at each Jazz Australia event they cater for.
Tickets for this concert are: Adults $68 and students $20. As I said, do consider bringing grandchildren or students that are perhaps learning an instrument, or are interested in ‘music’, to Jazz Australia events, as you never know, the band may prove just the inspiration needed to help them to decide to play jazz themselves, rather than over amplified rock and roll!
Bookings are with me on 5258 3936 or by return email. Payment must be made prior to the event either by cash, cheque or bank transfer to Jazz Australia, CBA Hawthorn.
Please remember to include your name when making a bank transfer to
063 138 1001 3193 ….or I will have no idea whose payment it is.
Do print this newsletter if possible and also please forward it to anyone you think could be interested in hearing some really great classic jazz.