30 May 2011

Month of Sundays

Month of Sundays was the title of a series of programs on our local ABC radio station, ABC666: four 2-hour Sunday specials on music in Canberra. There were sessions on jazz and rock and folk, so I guess we were talking of popular forms. I’m not sure if classical or choral got their time. The jazz special was the last of the series and I got asked to appear. David Sequeria presented and Melanie Sim produced a very interesting morning with an apt selection of guests. First was John Sharpe, author of Cool capital : the Canberra jazz scene, 1925-2005 (2006) and other works of jazz history, followed by Rachael Thoms and Luke Sweeting talking of their musicians’ life. I found their comments about current streams of jazz very interesting, along with the tracks they played from Rachael’s soon-to-be-released album. Miroslav Bukovsky then spoke of his story in jazz, from Czechoslovakia and 1968 and the Prague Spring to Australia. Miro has been close to many significant bands and happenings in Australia jazz for several decades. Then me on CanberraJazz.net and the current scene around town, Chris Deacon on ArtSound and its long-term contribution to jazz in Canberra, and to finish off, Margaret Moriarty on the trad scene and the Canberra Jazz Club. The chat was interspersed with some great music. I particularly remember one wordless vocal tune by Rachael/Luke and One for Woody by Ten Part Invention, but I only heard some of the program, having tuned in late and needing to rush off after. Jazz is a small community (perhaps 500 people in Canberra) but it’s committed to its art and it’s composed of the sort of people who will commit to something beyond immediate gratification. And it’s inviting. David and Melanie noticed that everyone knew each other and were chatting outside the studio before and after their broadcast times. It’s like that. Thanks to ABC666 for the opportunity to spread the word.

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