Tag Archives: Stephen Byth


Stephen Byth

Stephen Byth on alto with Barney McAll’s Non Compliance Mondays


Barney McAll Non Compliance Mondays, Bennetts Lane Jazz Club, Melbourne, 8pm on February 15, 22 and 29.

Mondays at Bennetts Lane were Allan Browne‘s night. He brought philosophy, poetry and humour to many evenings of wonderful music, ably assisted by many musician friends and colleagues. He also brought much warmth.

I’m no one will try to replace Al Browne, but a week ago on Monday evening it was a delight to see and heat pianist Barney McAll join a bunch of talented young musicians in two sets so full of life and fun that surely our much-missed occupant of the drum kit would have heartily approved.

In the youthful line-up with Barney was Paul Cornelius tenor, Stephen Byth alto, Chris Vizard trombone and Keiren Rafferty drums. Phillip Rex provided his usual exemplary input on bass.

I loved the vigour and enthusiasm, along with the obvious talent, of these young musicians. I was also impressed by McAll’s passion as their guide and mentor — he was attentive and eager to offer praise and to push members of the group to show their skills.

Above all, Barney McAll’s Non Compliance Mondays just seemed to be a natural fit for the start of the week, kicking us off with energy and propulsion. And lots of fun.

Tonight (February 15) the line-up includes Flora Carbo, Sam Anning and Luke Andresen.

After that, who knows? But we know they won’t be compliant.


A few images below:




Enrico Rava

Enrico Rava                       (Image supplied)


The Monash Sessions: Enrico Rava, Thursday 30 October at Bennetts Lane Jazz Club in Melbourne

It has become a tradition for Monash University to arrange for its students of improvised music to learn from some of the world’s great jazz musicians, either by having them visit or by taking the students overseass. The results of these working sessions have resulted in significant recordings in The Monash Sessions project — a recording initiative by Associate Professor and Head of School, Robert Burke, and Jazzhead.

Now, before Italy’s trumpet maestro Enrico Rava makes his headline appearance at the Wangaratta Festival of Jazz & Blues, Jazzhead is thrilled to announce the release of the 11-track album The Monash Sessions: Enrico Rava. The album will effectively be launched twice, on Thursday 30 October at Bennetts Lane Jazz Club in Melbourne and on the following evening at Wangaratta. Rava, in Australia for the first time, will be joined by staff and students.

In December last year, 35 jazz students from the Sir Zelman Cowen School of Music travelled to the Monash University Prato Centre in Italy to undertake an intensive three-week performance unit. As part of their study, students were given the opportunity to perform and record with Rava, one of the seminal figures of the European jazz scene.

Rava, an ECM artist, has released over 50 albums during his career, performing alongside greats such as Gil Evans, Cecil Taylor, Joe Henderson, John Abercrombie, Pat Metheny, and Dave Douglas.

The Monash Sessions: Enrico Rava was mixed and mastered at the Sonoria Recording Plant in Prato, Italy, by Andrea Benassai, and produced by Robert Burke and Mirko Guerrini.

It features music faculty members Paul Grabowsky (piano), Rob Burke and Mirko Guerrini (saxophones), Stephen Magnusson (guitar) as well as students Josh Kelly (alto), Paul Cornelius (tenor), Stephen Byth (tenor), pianists Daniel Mougerman and Joel Trigg, bassists Josh Manusama and Hiroki Hoshino, and drummers Rob Mercer, Cameron Sexton and Zeke Ruckman.

Jazzhead describes this album, recorded over two days, as having “a distinct Italian approach”, and being “relaxed but distinctly intense”. “Noted are the beautiful trumpet sound and passionate lyrical lines produced by Rava, conveying potent meaning and harmonic perfection.”


Oct 30 Bennetts Lane, Melbourne
Oct 31 WPAC Theatre, Wangaratta Jazz Festival