Monday, September 20, 2010


There are times when it's best to stay at home, indoors, warm and safe from the elements, preferably with some sort of exploitation movie from the 70s.

However Sunday afternoon was not one of those times. It was its antithesis: the sort of day that drags a person out of the house like a sunny, pleasantly tempered gorilla. It was a day that so perfectly typified the glory of spring that I suspect it may have received a payoff from the Tourism Commission.

I rode my scooter down to Coffea Cafe in Applecross, and sat under the jacaranda trees and Tiffany box blue skies, with the sounds of the city drifting faintly in the background and the spring sun making a welcome return from its winter hiatus, and had a pot of lemongrass and ginger tea and listened to some friends playing jazz.

It was very good. They’ve only been playing together for two months, but they sound as if they've been paired up all their lives. They play sophisticated versions of jazz favourites, in a smooth way that makes a cup of tea feel like a cocktail. Their repertoire covers classics ranging from the songbooks of Irving Berlin and Cole Porter to the work of Van Morrison and Norah Jones, but I suspect that even if I requested a number by Throbbing Gristle they could make it sound urbane.

Both musicians are prodigiously talented. The bass player trained at the Conservatorium, and has been performing in and around the local music scene for twenty years. As for the pianist, I don't know where his talent comes from, but I've narrowed it down to either the sale of his soul to the Devil, or a genetic mutation caused by a bite from a radioactive Nina Simone. Not that it really matters, although I hope it's not the first one: I'd hate to see him consigned to Hell for all eternity just so that I can hear an exquisite version of 'Almost Like Being In Love'.

Eventually autumn and winter will return, bringing their chill and damp and making it impossible to sit outdoors listening to jazz. However that's a good six months away, leaving plenty more Sundays to go down to the cafe for tea, music and sunshine.


Anonymous The bass player said...

Thanks for coming along to our little gig, and especially for the glowing review! Which Throbbing Gristle song would you like to hear? I'm sure we can work up a version for you! :-)

9:05 PM  
Anonymous Troy G said...

Sorry I missed it. I myself was performing at the Fremantle Eco Sustainability Festival, which turned out to be a street party filled with hippies.

1:26 PM  
Blogger Blandwagon said...

What do you mean, "turned out to be"? Surely it was a foregone conclusion?

I like to imagine that the Fremantle Eco Sustainablity Festival is eventually followed by the Fremantle Eco Fatigue Festival, which is where everyone gets sick and tired of inadequate green electricity, bike riding in the rain and preachy environmental oneupmanship, and just drives to McDonalds for a burger.

2:31 PM  
Blogger emawkc said...

Next time you're in that setting, in the coffee shop, sipping tea and listing to some great jazz from extremely talented musicians ... do me this favor: Stand up, strike your cigarette lighter and yell "Freebird! Play some Skynard!"

Just do it for me. Okay?

12:28 AM  

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