It's almost the last night of the year. A year that no-one will forget, and that will be talked about and the experience of which is already being made into films, plays, podcasts, songs, videos, as well as several terrabytes worth of social media posts.
This night is my New Year's Eve. The lockdown kept me away from hearing and seeing live jazz for about 10 months, it felt like being in prison, even though I could access endless streamed entertainment. But tonight, I am finally here. A kind of home, a darkened room, with a grand piano, where history is made every night.
Joe Chindamo is one of Melbourne's finest jazz musicians. Tonight, he is joined by Ben Hanlon, bass, and Danny Fischer, drums. They swing hard, but can switch to lyrical gentleness as required by the arrangement of a song. Joe has this amazing gift of being able to meld 2 songs together stylistically, yet each song is clearly recognisable of itself. I'm talking about My Favourite Things from The Sound of Music, alongside Norwegian Wood by The Beatles.
Listening to Joe's improvisations, I'm transported to another place, where time stands still, and there is only the sound of the present moment. Improvisation, like meditation, is present moment awareness.