Shaken Not Stirred at Tauranga Jazz Festival 2012 review

Another good performance from a band well known at this festival.  Maybe a little shaky in places, perhaps after a big gig on the Strand the night before. Playing lots of standards with their own flavour – the sort of music that appeals to many of the middle of the road jazz audience.  Easy to listen to and not so improvisational that only really serious Jazz officianados can appreciate it.  A good mix for the many who crowded Red Square for a pleasant sunny afternoon

Kokomo at Tauranga Jazz Festival 2012 review

Glad to be performing again after a couple of disjointed years, this famous local band delivered a good mix of new songs from their latest CD, and classic Kokomo crowd pleasers like Plastic Jesus.  As always great musical skills and tight arrangements from Derek, Mike, Nigel, Phil, Sonya and Grant. Great to see you again Kokomo and the new album went home with us – well worth the twenty bucks!.

The Hispanics at Tauranga Jazz Festival 2012 review

Sadly due to clashes with other bands I also wanted to catch, I only saw a couple of numbers by this talented and highly energetic band from Auckland.  I think they will probably rate as “the best Tauranga Jazz festival band that I didn’t see enough of”.

What I did see was great, high energy funk and soul crossover of much loved classics including a sort of souls funk, reggae version of the Beatles Come Together.

It all sounded good from this 9 piece band with real attitude. I just wish I had been able to catch more of them.  Such is the nature of festivals, too much to see in too many places.  Happily spoiled for choice though!

Malcolm McNeil at Tauranga Jazz Festival 2012 review

With a guitar and a bass (Nigel Masters from Kokomo), this didn’t seem like the tightest performance, but hey that’s Jazz, and maybe they haven’t played together much.  His voice faltered at times and some of the improv seemed out of synch but we can live with that.  Malcolm has been in this business a long time, is highly talented and has a large repertoire so was still very pleasant to watch,  Some excellent scatting and generally high musical standard to keep everyone happy

Adam Page at Tauranga Jazz Festival 2012 review

What can you say when you see someone this musically talented.  Adam plays everything from a U-bass (tenor sized bass ukukele), to flute, great Jazz Sax (his instrument of choice), to two PVC pipes that made a key changing Digeridoo, kalimba (african thumb piano), indian flute, keyboard and more, plus beat box vocals and Tuvan throat singing.  This totally improvised performance using looping pedals and raw talent had the audience spellbound from the onset.  Adam also played his beard (yes, his beard) in a highly musical and Muppet like song. Great entertainment! His incredible musical skill, including the ability to make up sequences on the fly using names of audience members or anything else, combined with his hugely engaging character made this one of the best musical performances I have seen anywhere. One of those special performers and performances which stand way out above others!!

Adam also ran interesting, informative and entertaining workshops at the Jazz Village

Mike Garner Trio Review Tauranga Jazz Festival 2012

Actually a foursome this time with special guest Paul Garner here on holiday from London.

Mike has been one of New Zealand best blues exponents for years and continues to excel. Their good strong groove and tight performance was only enhanced by the sensational guitar skills of Paul. A great set with plenty of great originals and standards to keep the audience enthralled.