March and Beyond.

I’m writing this as I sit at a cafe along the promenade in Noosa. The rain is looming but it won’t deter the many that flock to the Food and Wine Festival here. I am performing with my dear colleague Ambre Hammond as part of the festival. Our performance last night was a beautiful, extremely intimate concert ‘in the round’ on the hilltop at sunset. Here is a shot from that. When we get back to Sydney its all focus on our next show at Camelot on the 28th of May. Perhaps the last time you can see us before we hit the studio to record our second album!

You can purchase tickets for our Camelot show here! 

https://www.stickytickets.com.au/25709/ambre_hammond__marcello_maio_@_camelot_lounge/buy-tickets

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The month of March marked the launch of Tango Saloon’s latest album. Another great output from Julian Curwin. Launched at The Basement and softly at Django Bar. Its my opinion that this band is one of the underrated gems of the Sydney music scene. I’m sure I’m not the only one who shares this view. 

 

 

 

It also marked the launch of Beat Spacek’s latest solo offering. I had the pleasure of being involved in a live performance of this future soul music that transcends genre and style. Recorded live for Boiler Room TV. Another artist originally from the UK but residing in Sydney now, who is making truly original music. 

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Last but not least, in terms of album launches; Baby et Lulu’s ‘Album Deux’ was launched in Sydney in April. We are currently in the middle of the album tour, which is touring all around Australia. Its always a pleasure to be performing French song with these guys. Some of whom I have been working with for over 10 years now. 

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In between the touring I have been nestling in the studio working with some fantastic singers. Can't wait to show you what I've been working on! In the meantime you can check out a little something on soundcloud ;)

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Two Oh Won Fighv - January update.

Bringing 2014 to a close performing at the Opera House was a nice touch even if it wasn't inside the concert hall. 

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But the start of the new year seemed to be more exciting than ending 2014. 

Just a little update on the latest.

A fantastic three days in studio B of REC Studios with Abe Rounds early this month procured more than a handful of songs that will need some more work but the production / writing process was so seemless with Abraham who has recently located to LA and is busy touring with Meshell Ndegeocello. 

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Keeping the keyboard stool warm while Danny G is overseas with the Ojeez at the Monday Jam this month continues to be a blast. The jam supports some great local and international talent along with a special guest performer each week.

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Sometimes the highlights of the year come early and in this case one most definitely has. This Thursday I am performing as guest artist with the Jazzgroove Mothership Orchestra under the leadership of Grammy award-winning composer Maria Schenider along with guest composer/pianist Belgian Jef Neve. The performance will be held at Angel Place (City Recital Hall) as part of the Sydney Festival. I am relatively new to Maria's work and I can only say I'm a huge fan of this masterful composer!

 Rehearsals underway with master composer Maria Schneider and the Jazzgroove Mothership Orchestra.   

Rehearsals underway with master composer Maria Schneider and the Jazzgroove Mothership Orchestra.

 

At the end of 2014 I went into the studio to record an accordion based trio album with double bassist Mark Harris and percussionist Nic Cecire. The mixing is in its latter stages and a launch of the album will be happening in the coming months so stay posted. 

 Nic Cecire's setup at Free Energy Device Studios 'Nov 2014

Nic Cecire's setup at Free Energy Device Studios 'Nov 2014

I have a very special performance to announce on the 17th of February at the Delmar Gallery as part of the 2015 programme of the Society of Arts. I will be performing with the incomparable Phil Stack on double bass in this intimate duo concert. Tickets available HERE! 

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Spring round up.

The last couple of months have been an exciting time for me musically with some notable performances and future projects in the pipeline.

Monday Jam residency:

While my good friend Danny G Felix is working in Asia I have been lucky enough to fill in on the residency with the Ojeez house band at The Monday Jam. Its been a blast performing every Monday night with Steve Lamante, Nic Jeffries and Paul and Noel Mason. There isn’t much that compares to growing a rapport and chemistry with great musicians who you also spend time with away from the bandstand. Not only that every week we have a special guest which has included Ilan Kidron from the Potbellez, Bruce Hathcock and Jeff Duff of late. You can check out whats happening in the coming weeks by visiting https://www.facebook.com/therealmondayjam?fref=ts

Jane Rutter:

July marked my first performance with the amazing flautist Jane Rutter. I was invited by Jane to perform at the City Recital Hall (Angel Place) for a Bastille Day celebration combining classical, romantic and classic French repertoire. It was a great experience to play with such esteemed classical musicians who also included soprano Yvonne Kenny. 

This concert was followed up with a performance at The Concourse theatre in Chatswood as part of a lunch time series. There has been talk of an album in the near future.

 Jane Rutter and harpist Owen Torr

Jane Rutter and harpist Owen Torr

Baby et Lulu in the Studio.

The end of October saw Baby et Lulu enter Sony Studios for their second album. A winning combination of both Lara Goodridge and Abby Dobson, along with the band and producer Tony Buchen was used again. Look out for the album launch in the coming months. Otherwise catch the band at Camelot which has become the groups staple ground. This weekend though we head up to Mullumbimby Folk Festival for a couple of performances.

Monsieur Camembert.

10 years with this band makes it my longest running membership and what a blast it is with such voraciously talented and experienced musicians. The Cohen shows were a great success and will be followed up next month with a tribute to Louis Prima. Every month the performances at Camelot are a blast.

Residency at Palmer & Co.

Having studied a Bachelor of Music in Jazz performance at the Sydney Conservatorium, I can tell you this residency of playing jazz standards is one to be cherished (as long as it lasts!). Every Tuesday night the classic American songbook flows with some of my favourite musicians to play that music with. 

Qantas - Feels Like Home.

I had the pleasure of recording on this song as part of Qantas’ new campaign. Singing is Martha Zwartz, daughter of legendary Sydney bassist Jonathan Zwartz. We will be performing this with an all star line up on the 19th of November at Sydney Airport in the hangar. Look out for the footage!

and last but not least!

Going into the studio with MNM Trio.

Its been a while coming but finally its time to record a specific piano-accordion trio album. Joining me will be Mark Harris on bass (long time colleague in Monsieur Camembert, Tango Saloon and Baby et Lulu) and Nic Cecire on a hybrid drum kit setup. Looking forward to preparing a mixed repetoire of European and latin classics along with an original or two in a jazz context. EPK to come!


 lift selfie on the way up to rehearsal

lift selfie on the way up to rehearsal

tonight's jazz

Tonight I will be performing at Palmer & Co (Sydney) with a couple of close friends and fantastic musicians - Michael Walder and Nicholas Jefferies. Playing those standards till midnight amongst the cocktails. 

In the meantime have a look at my friend Sam Zubrycki's last and latest episode of the Monday Night Jam series. The Monday Jam happens every Monday at Gingers, on Oxford St. 

Back in 2010...

I had the pleasure to tour with the Song Company three Christmas' ago. I found this little preview of that tour on youtube. Was an amazing experience balancing the accordion with those voices acoustically and being under the direction of the peerless Roland Peelman.