Sunday, October 2, 2011

Sunday Arvo at the Lunatic Soup Kitchen

Sunday Arvo at the Lunatic Soup Kitchen, mouldering pile and watering hole of distinction in the grubby backstreets of Melbourne, Australia .  Glen the Landlord was giving away free beer, but that was yesterday.

Ah yes, the jam, now let's see. Started well enough with the usual suspects Col, Frank and Brian, joined shortly thereafter by meself, Al The Jazz (drums) and Jack the Lad (trombone).  Ali (tenor sax) joined the Captain, and then Keef sauntered in, as he does. Very good sauntering from Keef, we all thought.

The music ranged from Naima (Coltrane) to When My Baby Walks Down the Street (tin pan alley). Ali's friend/sister/complete bluddy stranger got up and sang My Funny Valentine followed by the Eva Cassidy arrangement of Autumn Leaves.. McCue played well until  he fell for the old make-it-hard-for-the-piano-player trick, and got lumbered with You Don't Know What Love Is, played in entirely the wrong tempo by all concerned. You Don't Know What the Tune Is, played by all unconcerned,  more like. Rob retired to the bar to contemplate the sight of four sets of feet tapping away, to four different beats..

The Jazz was so good on the sticks, we had a struggle persuading Hirsh to take over, but eventually he conquered his nerves (hah!) and positively ripped through Bernie's Tune, One For My Father, and a coupla others. Somewhere in the middle of all that, a young lady aged about 10 got up and played some solo piano. Precocious brat, disgustingly confident, quite good. Shouldn't be allowed. Then Noriyo from Kyoto stepped up and played keys for fine renditions of Ipanema and Satin Doll, and will hopefully do so again.

An entertaining afternoon, with an audience that stayed, drank and gossiped as they should. It  ended with the usual riotous assembly ripping out a fine version of  Doxy then comprehensively murdering Route 66, We'll probably do it all again next week, only better, or worse, or backwards.

My Funny Valentine , by the way, is no laughing matter. Autumn Leaves, but it keeps coming back. We didn't play Summertime., and most of the other tunes weren't much better. There is nothing wrong with a jazz waltz chart that a box of matches couldn't fix. Captain Chaos could organise fours without total confusion resulting, but he prefers not to, and from an entertainment value standpoint, I think he is on to something.

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