Posts Tagged ‘Jazzgroove’

1. Favourite/Most influential Jazz Musician?

It’s really difficult to put a stamp on my all time favourite musician in Jazz. I had a mantra throughout my time at the Con which was ‘DEXTRAHAR’. I still need to remind myself of what that means and how I’m representing this in my playing.

The ‘DEX’ is of course for Dexter Gordon the gentle giant. I really love the sense of humour in his playing and how he was such an influence to so many musicians but was open to what was being played by the younger guys around him.

‘TRA’ is for Coltrane and his discipline and dedication to making himself a better musician. Imagine what would have been created if he hadn’t died so young.

The ‘HAR’ is all about sound. Rory Brown introduced me to the incredible sound of Billy Harper in my first year at the Con. I still get goosebumps when I listen to ‘Preistess’. He has an enormous sound that cuts through you and then warms you up from the inside.

Seamus Blake is my modern favourite. I was fortunate to spend some time with him in New York in 2007. I really love Gary Smulyan’s baritone playing. He’s the bench mark for all modern bari players.

2. Favourite/Most Influential Australian Musician?

I know he’s from NZ but Roger Manins is my favourite Sax player. It’s a real shame that more of his music isn’t out there.

Judy Bailey was a great influence on me. She taught me to be less critical of my playing and accept that sometimes the best music happens when you are making ‘mistakes’.

3. All time favourite album?

My favourite album is ‘Standard Coltrane’ from 1958 with Red Garland, PC, Jimmy Cobb and Wilbur Haden on trumpet. There is a real looseness and a sense that it is just a bunch of guys playing over their favourite tunes and not some overly rehearsed masterpiece. When I’m at a loss I always come back to this period of Coltrane. It’s kind of like a reset button. There is a beautiful slow version of ‘Invitation’ on this record.

Other albums that I also love:

Chris Speed – Trio Iffy

Bill Frisell – Unspeakable

Anything with Seamus Blake.

Gary Smulyan – The Real Deal

4. Best live gig you’ve seen?

Kim Lawson, Danny Junor and I caught the Fung Wah bus up to Boston in 2007 to see George Garzone and the ‘Fringe’. After 5 hours of travel and the thought that we might not even make the gig, we crammed into a small room in a hostel which I think had been the scene of a horrible crime. We arrived at the gallery where the band was playing and George greeted us and suggested we visit the tavern next door for a taste of their homebrew beer the ‘Druid Fluid’.

We headed back to the gallery, took the front row seats and held on. The ‘Fringe’ is a trio with John Lockwood on Bass and Bob Gulotti on Drums that has been creating improvised music since the ‘70’s.

Garzone’s sound floored me! I had never seen anyone play so furiously yet sound so melodic and beautiful at the same time. At one climax in the music I found myself giggling uncontrollably because it made me feel so good (it might have also been the Druid Fluid).

5. What are you working on right now?

I’ve been doing most of my practise on Baritone and have been working hard to get comfortable over 3-4 octaves on both horns. I’m trying to get away from linear playing and am doing a lot of exercises on larger intervals and triad super-impositions. I am also concentrating on my posture and amount of tension in my body when I’m playing. I think it’s important to take time to go for a bike ride or a jog or anything to help with endurance. Playing a musical instrument can be pretty rough on your body!

I’m continuing to write for my Quartet with Jamie Cameron, Ben Waples and Aaron Flower.

We have a JG gig in March.

Tim Stocker
ph. 0402 043 293
Visit Tim’s Myspace Site


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Hey everyone,

Last night I went and checked out Jazzgroove at the new venue for 505. It is a really great room and the upcoming programme of music is outstanding. I recommend everyone to get down there soon!

I bought a video camera on the weekend and tried it out last night. I hope to get videos up every week.

This clip is of James Loughnan with The Doig Collective last night. I thought he played a wicked solo and wanted to share it with you.


P.S There’s some great gigs happening this week – James Muller’s Quartet tonight @ The Basement and Mike Nock Friday Night @ The Soundlounge

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Lucian McGuinness is the latest musician to participate in The Dilworths Top 5 influence column.
Recently we’ve been playing a few horn section gigs and hanging out afterwards having great discussions about music and how we get our music out there.
He’s a killer trombonist and can be seen regularly playing with his band Keizer-McGuinness Quintet (check them out at the Kinetic Festival this month), King Tide and the Jazzgroove Mothership Orchestra.
Here it is:

My top 5 top 8 influences on my instrument

In order of my exposure to these trombonists, I would have to begin with Vic Dickenson. My mum had some Billie Holiday records – cassettes – that we loved, and I learned later that it was his trombone on most of those recordings. And now, listening to that stuff again, especially the late 50’s recordings of Billie, I’m sure all those years of listening to a pretty limited repertoire burnt that sort of lyrical, easy and slightly humorous approach to playing jazz in my brain. I guess by that time almost everybody on those recordings were in the twilight of their careers and didn’t feel the need to playing in any manner other than an ‘easy’ one. There was a tv show made of those sessions, here’s : Vic blows after Lester Young and Ben Webster.

When I started learning ‘jazz’ trombone towards the end of high school, I chatted to a busking saxophonist and he suggested I check out a Sydney trombonist James Greening, on a Catholics record called Simple. I’m sure you’ll all sneer at me when I say that at first I didn’t like it much. I found the texture of the music too subtle, too understated, and that Greening’s sound was too gritty or harsh. This is probably because I had had no real contact with Australian jazz at that point, or any jazz that stylistically reached beyond the 1950’s. (My teacher at the time had me working on J J Johnson and Carl Fontana recordings, both of whom are much more proper than almost any Australian muso, which in turn is something I now love Australians for). Of course, I soon came to my senses and at one point our high-school jazz hang almost became a Catholics tribute band. Then I got the Bernie McGann record with Greening on it, and refused to play anything other than piano-less quartet for a while. This somehow got me to Bassdrumbone, a trio of Ray Anderson, Gerry Hemingway and Mark Helias. I guess Greening and Anderson have some elements in common, although I don’t think Greening lists Ray Anderson as an influence per se. Those reduced combinations (Greening’s World According to James is also a piano-less situation) highlight the incredible freedom that both these guys have. Their sounds differ a lot, but they share a virtousic facility and deceptively ‘loose’ feel. I had a few lessons with a heavy classical cat in Canberra, whom I asked if he could make me sound like that (dumb question). He listened to about 5 seconds of Greening on CD and said something like, “This guy makes it sound free and easy, but underneath all that he has an incredible amount of control.”
Halfway through my conservatorium study Dave Panichi moved back to Oz to teach in Canberra. Dave was my first experience with a trombonist who knows post-bebop developments in jazz inside-out and upside down, which was intimidating at the time. At first Dave sounded too complex and almost pedantic to my ears (I had left J J behind for a while) but watching him play up close changed my whole perception of how at home and confident a trombone could be in sax-and-guitar-dominated-mainstream-modern-jazz.

Around the same time Phil Slater told me to check out a NY trombonist Josh Roseman, who I chased through Dave Douglas recordings to his own debut CD, Cherry. You could argue that there’s not that much trombone playing up front in this record I guess, at least, not in the old-school I’m the bandleader and I play first and the most kind of way, but what Josh plays and the way his personality is stamped across the whole disc is alluring: a kind of anti-Conrad Herwig (can I say that?) I used to spin the Marvin Gaye cover ‘Just To Keep You Satisfied’ on my radio show to sync up with the love scenes on Dawson’s Creek. Who knew trombone could be steamy and sexxy?

The conclusion to this list is another piano-less quartet leader, Nils Wogram. Sydney trombonist Jeremy Borthwick played me, among many other fine eye-openers, some early Nils Wogram quintet CDs which at the time I found so obtuse that I couldn’t fathom, let alone like them (I’m recognising a familiar theme in my journey of discovery). Later along the way, probably at Birdland Records, I heard Root 70’s Getting Rooted, and was completely blown away. Root 70 use high-fidelity to draw you in, and in, to sometimes very fragile timbres on their instruments. There are other amazing elements in the playing, rhythmically and harmonically, but I guess the most striking thing is how Nils can use that ‘fragile’ sound (with plenty of chops) to move in and out of the foreground, adding melody above and harmony or bass below. Oh crikey, there’s so many more…of the 8 names here, I have seen all the living ones play quite often, which greatly determines the scale of their influence, but there are many more!

L (January 2010)

Check out Lucian’s Blog at http://lucianmcguinness.com


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Thanks to everyone who came down and supported The Dilworths set at the Jazzgroove Festival last night. Thanks to Carl Morgan or filling in – you smoked it!  It was such a great crowd and a big turn out for all the bands that night. I couldn’t stay around but heard that Elana Stone’s Band rocked the house.

For those that missed it, there was a marching band on Saturday arvo marching down Foveaux St drawing people out of the shop fronts in a wicked New Orleans style jam. It was so great and inspiring to see so many of the top sydney musicians that I’ve grown up admiring to be getting together jamming to promote the festival.

I’ll be heading down tonight to check out Gerard Masters, the Waples Brothers and the Vampires. I’m sure the Mothership will be a smokin’ gig too.

Big shout out to the Jazzgroove Association, but in particular Mat Ottignon and John Hibbard for the great efforts they went to make it such a successful festival. Hopes high that it happens again next year.


Current Reading: Richard Dawkins – Evidence for Evolution
Current Listening: Terence Blanchard – Choices; Check out his “webisodes’ on youtube, “Evolving” in particular episode 3 discussing the bands approach to playing.

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Just wanted to let you know that The Dilworths will be performing at the Jazzgroove futures festival on Saturday the 16th January 8pm at the Excelsior Hotel in Surry Hills.

Carl Morgan will be filling in on Guitar for Hugh Barrett whose away with The Beautiful Girls

Below is the write up from the program


These young guys are Jazzgroove Records latest release and perhaps the next big thing. The Dilworths find the perfect balance of modern day Jazz influences, lending from American and European traditions while embracing the raw earthiness of their Australian roots. The band has undeniable experience beyond their years, having performed individually everywhere from Carnegie Hall to the Sydney Opera House.

Eamon Dilworth – Trumpet

Karl Laskowski – Tenor Saxophone

Carl Morgan – Guitar

Alex Boneham – Upright Bass

Cameron Reid – Drums

more info : www.jazzgroove.com

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John Hibbard asked me to compile a list of 10 cds that have influenced me the most so i thought id share it here too.

• Miles Davis – 64 Concert My Funny Valentine

My housemate and I recently acquired the record of this concert and for the first 3 weeks in our new place listened to it over and over again every night. I can’t get over how the rhythm section reacts to every solo keeping things fresh and exciting. The way Ron and Tony make decisions about feel and direction makes the solos so exciting. Herbie’s solo on All Of You is possibly one of the greatest on record. The way this band interacts is one of the major inspirations for the Dilworths.

• Terence Blanchard – Flow

Terence is one of my living idols. He has a big glorious sound and plays with such conviction and freedom that transcends the notes and harmony to which he’s playing over. The rhythm section on this record, Aaron Parks, Lionel Loueke, Derrick Hodge and Kendrick Scott, work so well in creating a bed for the soloist to improvise upon and help propel the music forwards. To me this band is like the 60s Miles band of today, always searching and making such a high level of music. There’s also a great live gig from the Village Vanguard you can download from the website.

• Sonny Stitt – Sits in with the Oscar Peterson Trio

Back when I was 16 I had my first band and it was before copying hundreds of gigabytes of music from other people iTunes and I remember that this disc was getting passed around us. I think it was Alex Boneham’s originally and by the time it got through the band and to me it was fairly scratched (it was getting passed around without a case). For the 4 of us at the time this album was our life and only recently i managed to find it in a store in New York second hand. Man, this album is like the definition of straight ahead feel good swing. The kind of music that puts a smile on your face.

• Ryan Kisor – Battlecry

When I first started learning with Phil Slater he gave me a whole bunch of albums on an Mp3 disc, and most of them I had never heard of. I took a random pick and this album came up and it was one of the first I could sing along to start to finish. Its a straight ahead record with Sam Yahel on Organ, Peter Bernstein and Brian Blade. Kisor is an unbelievable trumpet player and the lines he plays are almost compositionally perfect.

• Hancock/Hargrove/Brecker – Directions in Music

This was the first “modern jazz” albums I got into. It’s a live album with Roy Hargrove, Michael Brecker, Herbie Hancock, John Patitucci and Brian Blade doing a tribute to Miles Davis and John Coltrane. I remember loving the sound and intensity they all played with but having no idea what was going on with forms and harmony. Every time I getting the CD out I still find it so exciting and spontaneous.

• Kenny Dorham – Quiet Kenny

Phil Slater told me this was a must have so I ordered it from Amazon and from the first moment was hooked. Kenny is quite understated and gets such interesting colours out of his horn. Every track on this swings and Paul Chambers and Art Taylor create that feeling on 2 & 4 where I guess they coined the phrase “In the pocket.” There are so many great recordings from 1959 and this is certainly one of them!

• Dvorak – New World Symphony

I heard the London Symphony play this live earlier this year and then permanently borrowed the CD from my girlfriend. This work has largely influence my writing in placing more emphasis upon themes and development from the material you already have. So much of it is built upon one melodic idea and passed throughout the orchestra. This idea has simplified my approach to writing new tunes.

• Avishai Cohen – Continuo

This album has a great sound, energy and one of the best bass sounds on record. I went through a phase of checking out the Jewish New York scene, guys like Avishai Cohen (Trumpet), Omer Avital and Jason Lindner. There’s something very accessible about the music these guys produce, a lot based around the harmonic minor scale modes and rhythmically really groovy but mixed with virtuosic technique making complicated stuff sound simple.

• Ambrose Akinmusire – Prelude to Cora

I spent some time hanging out with Ambrose in New York and recently when he was out and he has been a big inspiration for me. He got me thinking about having my own concept and thinking about my sound and where I wanted to head with it in the future. I really dig this album for its writing and the way an overall mood is created throughout.

• Matt McMahon – Paths and Streams

The guys on this CD are local heroes of mine. I’ve been fortunate enough to see them live many times and had many conversations about music with Matt and Phil Slater. I saw the release of this album at the Studio and was blown away by the beauty and space these guys created. I bought the CD and went home and listened to it twice that night.

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