In June I had the opportunity as the musical director of Brisbane’s own Enthusiastic Musician’s Orchestra to program a concert to be performed with one of Australia’s most iconic jazz figures, Dale Barlow. The band rehearsed intensively over a number of weeks for this project which comprised some of my compositions featuring Dale Barlow as soloist, along with music by Andrew Garton, Steve Newcomb’s arrangement of the Wayne Shorter composition “Night Dreamer” (which Steve and Dale had recorded together in the 90’s!) and several compositions by Danish saxophonist and composer Lars Moller.
During the course of the Brisbane International Jazz Festival Dale got around to several gigs and sat in on some late night sessions. It was such a privilege to hear a musician of his calibre getting out to jams and staying musically in shape, and ultimately to collaborate with him performing with EMO for the closing event of the festival. A good time was had by all and after the concert Dale let it slip to me that he has some original big band arrangements of his music that he wrote sometime ago buried in a box somewhere. That sounds like a recipe for round two!
Photo credit: Mish Photography