25 May 2019


I first encountered Carl Dewhurst when he was a student at the School of Music, then at Manuka, playing around town with Cameron Undy at bars and even a plant nursery. He was impressive even then; he's mammoth now. That's getting on 30 years ago. He left Canberra in 1990, stabled mostly in Sydney, but with time in London, perhaps elsewhere. He plays all manner of musics. I've heard experimental from him in the Opera House. This night was clean and clear and fabulously inventive with the standards repertoire, like All the things or Wes Montgomery or Out of nowhere. Of course, he was with the best, Brendan and Mark, so it was a shared inventiveness. Solid swings with crystal clear and hugely varied and easy improvs; melodies that spell themselves but easily extended; chordal play with melodies interpersed; just one time that I remember as dissonant, laying back with minimal notes; plenty of accompanying solos, especially from bass but drums in there too. All easy and rich while still tonal and clear. It's a mark of knowledge and experience. Masterful. Just a huge pleasure.

Carl Dewhurst (guitar) played standards with Brendan Clarke (bass) and Mark Sutton (drums) at the National Press Club.

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