Tag Archives: The Salon

ENSEMBLE MEETS ALL EXPECTATIONS

Kennedy Snow

Nina Ferro performs with Kennedy Snow and string quartet at The Salon.      Image supplied.

REVIEW

Everything It Could Be, Kennedy Snow joins Nina Ferro and a string quartet, 7pm Friday 9 March 2018, The Salon, Melbourne Recital Centre.

Melbourne drummer and composer Sonja Horbelt took great care with the line-up for this outing with vocalist Nina Ferro, ensuring that it was, in the words of the final piece played, Everything It Could Be.

Acclaimed R&B and jazz vocalist Ferro joined Kennedy Snow — Horbelt on drum kit,  pianist Bob Sedergreen, saxophonist Kellie Santin and bassist Kim May — along with  Steve Sedergreen on keys, Janine Maunder on backing vocals and percussion, and string players Atilla Kuti violin, Lisa Reynolds violin, Lauren Segal viola and Karoline Kuti cello. It proved to be a formidable combination.

The power of Ferro’s voice in this acoustically superb space meant we did not need convincing that, as she sang “This is the place I want to be” in the opening song, Sunshine, she meant it.

The ballad Last Days of 33 ushered in the lush, full sound of the string quartet, embroidered for a time by piano and followed later by a duo of bass and piano. Again Ferro demonstrated we were hearing a big voice in a small space, with agility and strong vibrato. “Maybe it’s awesome, how things used to be,” she sang, making us think they still were.

The foot-tapping I’ve Made Up My Mind demonstrated the good vibe in this ensemble, Bob Sedergreen looking on with obvious enjoyment as Santin made brief forays and the strings added body as they seemed to carry both vocalists on a cinemascopic journey.

In Follow, title track of Kennedy Snow’s album, Ferro’s invitation “Can I tell you a story my friend, let me reveal what I know” was delivered with ease, the words clearly articulated and expressive. There were more sweeping vistas from the strings, subtle and beautiful sax, and punchy piano gleefully injected.

The string quartet played a different role in Another Time, their contribution stronger yet more sparse. Solos from Steve Sedergreen and Santin could have been longer, I thought, and the drums a tad less strong from where I was sitting, but this was a nice piece.

There were no strings in A Different Life. “Just imagine a new way forward,” Ferro sang to the faster tempo, Horbelt’s drums firing up and going for it with Steve Sedergreen underpinning powerful work by Santin on alto and May on bass interacting with Ferro in a vibrant, energetic finish.

A new tune, appropriately named Like All Things New, began with sombre piano as Ferro sang, “There’s a change has to happen for this life to go further, all seems so simple at first …” This was a beautiful ballad, quieter and yet with an intensity that made applause for Santin’s alto sax solo seem intrusive.

Ferro’s vocals in Intuition were delivered with dynamic variation and free-flowing power, calling to mind the drama of vocalist Jeannie Lewis. A musing, meandering solo by Santin preceded a building of intensity towards a tight finish.

The appreciative audience applauded wildly after the final Everything It Could Be, an upbeat piece with a strong beat and appealing melody. No one needed convincing that Nina Ferro, Kennedy Snow and the string quartet had indeed delivered a performance that was everything it could be.

ROGER MITCHELL

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LIVE A LITTLE WITH LIVE MUSIC

Ben Winkelman Trio

Ben Winkelman Trio: Eric Doob, Ben and Sam Anning.        Image: Robert Carlo

PREVIEWS

Ben Winkelman Trio, The Salon, MRC, Melbourne, 11 March 2016 at 7pm

winkelman-front-cover_300x

It began in Perth, jumped to Portland and tonight the Ben Winkelman Trio National Tour 2016 arrives at Melbourne Recital Centre for a Melbourne Jazz Co-operative gig at 7pm.

The tour, which takes in eight other cities after tonight, will launch the pianist / composer’s fourth album, The Knife, released in Australia this month on Jazzhead. Ben Vanderwal will be at the drum kit for the tour, replacing Eric Doob. Sam Anning, recently returned from a long stint in New York, is on acoustic bass.

The album’s 13 Winkelman originals, recorded at Sear Sound in New York, were inspired by the highs and lows of adjusting to life in that city and reflect the composer’s interests in Cuban, Brazilian and gospel music, “odd meter claves and through-composed miniatures”.

A Melburnian who has been living in New York since 2010, Winkelman has an impressive discography — Odysseys was a 2010 AIR Award nominee for Best Independent Jazz Release, The Spanish Tinge won the 2007 AIR Award in that category and Stomps, Pieces & Variations was nominated in the 2006 Australian Jazz bell Awards.

Click here to book $30 & $25 concessions.

Moreland City Band

Scott Tinkler at the helm of Moreland City Band.

Fleming Park Festival, 11am – 6pm on Sunday 13 March 2016, corner Albert and Cross streets, East Brunswick

Fleming Park is the place to be on Sunday as the Moreland City Band presents a day of live music, plus an African drumming workshop with Ray Pereira and the chance to try out in lacrosse sessions with Moreland Lacrosse Club.

The music on offer includes The Immortal Horns, Andrew Murray’s ATM15, Big Band Frequency, Moreland City Bands, JC Little Big Band, Beyond the Bathroom Choir.

There will be food stalls, a barbecue, a licensed bar, cakes and activities for kids.

This is a free community event supported by Moreland City Council, Moreland Lacrosse Club and Andra Jackson.

ROGER MITCHELL

 

 

 

A BOOST TO AUSTRALIAN EXPORTS?

Students from The Sir Zelman Cowen School of Music at Monash University

Sir Zelman Cowen School of Music students from Monash University perform the music of Charles Lloyd.

PICTORIAL UPDATE: Melbourne International Jazz Festival, Saturday 31 May, 2014 at The Salon, Melbourne Recital Centre

Festivals are about more than just providing a feast of music. Through masterclasses and conversation sessions they perform an educative role — for lovers of music and students taking the rocky road to becoming working musicians.

Over recent years it has been hard to keep count of how many young Australian jazz musicians have moved to New York City or to cities in Europe to study and gain experience. Many return only on visits. It’s fair to say these musicians are a significant export.

At The Salon yesterday evening as part of Explorations in Jazz, three groups of Monash University students from the Sir Zelman Cowen School of Music had a chance to show what they had learned in some intensive one-hour sessions with visiting jazz greats Charles Lloyd, Reuben Rogers and Eric Harland.

Michael Tortoni at The Salon, Melbourne Recital Centre

Michael Tortoni at The Salon, Melbourne Recital Centre

Melbourne International Jazz Festival artistic director Michael Tortoni opened proceedings and had a chance to hear the result before heading to the Reverence Hotel in Footscray, where the Horns of Leroy were performing as part the MIJF’s first foray out in Melbourne’s western suburbs.

Rob Burke

Rob Burke

Associate Professor Rob Burke then introduced Charles Lloyd, who spoke briefly about the time he, Rogers and Harland had spent with the students and about jazz as “music of freedom and wonder”.

Then each group played two Lloyd tunes — Fish Out of Water, Blow Wind, Little Peace, Passing Through, Sweet Georgia Bright and Forest Flower.

Students from The Sir Zelman Cowen School of Music at Monash University

Reuben Rogers introduces students from Monash University

Group 2 had the advantage of being joined by Rogers and Harland, which really provided a solid foundation and kept things moving.

Students from The Sir Zelman Cowen School of Music at Monash University

Reuben Rogers enjoys sitting in with students from Monash University

This was a short concert, but its effect will no doubt linger for these young musicians.

Eric Harland hits it off with a student from Monash University

Eric Harland hits it off with a student from Monash University

Audiences of the future will reap the benefits of insights gathered during the learning and the performing by these students, who have had another valued opportunity to work with experienced mentors in improvised music.

ROGER MITCHELL

Students from The Sir Zelman Cowen School of Music at Monash University

Charles Lloyd thanks the students from Monash University