19 February 2020
Filling in for James
Canberra is full of jazz bassists I admire, not least the local seniors of our craft including James and Eric A and Brendan. It was truly a buzz to sit in for James Luke who was unavailable for a gig with pianist James W and Mark Levers. I play with James W at other times, as Tilt Trio, but he's running through musicians with gig invitations in place of the more standard jam attendances. It a good idea made obvious by the understanding I got from playing with Mark ... and it pays. I've played with Mark often enough at jam sessions, but a gig is longer (3 sets over 3.5 hours) with a bigger and somewhat more demanding string of tunes; mostly standards but including a few of James' originals. It makes for a more intimate and certainly more dynamic music as you get in synch and chat between sets over a beer beer and find time to harmonise. Mark did a great job, picking up new and obscure tunes, spelling melodies through solos, playing the most delicate of brushes and sticks. So it was a wonderful night, playing a full gig with Mark and sitting in for a much admired James L. And thanks to James W for the call.
James Woodman (piano) led a trio with Mark Levers (drums) and Eric Pozza (bass) at Molly.