Friday, July 30, 2010
Evelyn, a modified dog
Viewed the quivering fringe of a special doily
Draped across the piano, with some surprise
In the darkened room
Where the chairs dismayed
And the horrible curtains
Muffled the rain
She could hardly believe her eyes
A curious breeze
A garlic breath
Which sounded like a snore
Somewhere near the Steinway (or even from within)
Had caused the doily fringe to waft & tremble in the gloom
Evelyn, a dog, having undergone
Pondered the significance of short-person behavior
In pedal-depressed panchromatic resonance
And other highly ambient domains . . .
Wednesday, July 21, 2010
As part of this concert at the Globe, I recently did an interview with Dan Condon for Timeoff Magazine. He asked me the following:
Wednesday, July 14, 2010
Tuesday, July 6, 2010
Thursday, July 1, 2010
So I now have a blog. How did this happen? I’ve never really thought I’ve had anything worthwhile to say, and besides, who has the time to actually say it? In the past, I’ve had fantasies of being a writer – spending time in some cold deserted cabin writing eccentric stories, similar to JD Salinger’s Glass family or Jaclyn Moriarty’s tales. Of course, this is just me being fanciful, but I’ve come to realise that writing a blog might be able to act as a type of online reference, or at the very least, a way to clarify a sense of direction when planning different projects, or even further research.
“So, what gives with Zappa’s music in a Jazz Club? Truth is, it really belongs on any kind of stage because Frank was never restricted to any one musical style. If you can imagine how an 19-piece orchestra might appear, precariously squeezed into your lounge room, you will have some idea of how tiny the Brisbane Jazz Club’s dimensions looked on Sunday night. Our table was up front, with the horn section literally two feet away. Suffice to say, we didn’t miss one glorious note. Could I have been any more impressed? Under the circumstances, I very much doubt it. Clint Allen might well be able to sweat for Australia, but The Zappa Big Band did him proud on Sunday night and if they ever play in Brisbane again, I’ll be first in line for a ticket.”
I’ll finish my first blog by posting an interview I recently did for Time-Off where I talked about the band:
1. Can you tell us how the idea for this project came about?
I’ve had the great fortune of working with some amazing musicians both in Australia and overseas during the past few decade. Some of the guys in this group, I’ve known since I was 17 years old when I did my music degree. I’ve always been interested in playing adventurous, intricate complex music and so, for those projects, I’ve asked the top players around town to play. This incredible band brings all of these players together – such as the incredible Scott Griffiths on also sax, drummer Joe Marchisella (who regularly plays with trumpeter James Morrison), Michael Rogers (who fronts the bands Doch and Miguel) and pianist, Kellee Green, a rare performer who is equally brilliant playing jazz and contemporary classical music! This is by far, the cream of the crop – every musician in this band is a virtusoso on their particular instrument – and it’s an absolute pleasure to get everyone together on stage at the same time.
Frank Zappa released about 80 albums during his lifetime, so there was PLENTY of material to choose from! I’ve tried to include songs from as many of his records as possible, such as “Hot Rats” (1969), “One Size Fits All” (1975), and “Jazz From Hell” (1986). Also, it was important to try to choose material that would feature the musicians too. I think the audience is really going to enjoy classical Zappa charts such as “Echidna’s Arf”, “Take Your Clothes Off When You Dance”, “King Kong”, “G-Spot Tornado” and “Peaches en Rengalia”.
Zappa himself once said, “Jazz isn’t dead….it just smells funny”. People have responded very positively to the idea of this project. Ticket sales have been strong so far. I think that although people aren’t sure of Zappa’s music, they know that it’s often fiendishly difficult. Zappa has a certain element of cult status about him; it’s not often that you get to hear Zappa music these days!!