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Simon Pilbrow

Melbourne-based jazz pianist

About Me

Melbourne based, freelance jazz pianist Learned classical piano and violin as a child, spent year in US 1979, studied briefly at Wisconsin Conservatory of Music, Milwaukee 1979; leader of Monash Jazz Quintet (1980- 82), Monash University Big Band 1982-3, solo jazz piano gigs 1980-now, Simon Pilbrow Quartet 1983-4, Julian Driscoll Quartet 1985-87; performed with Allan Browne, Gary Costello, Geoff Kluke, Ben Robertson; Nick Haywood; Edward York; guitarist George Golla in June 1988; house pianist Royal Derby Jazz Jam (1990); Graham Finch Quartet (1999-2002) and Peninsula Jazz Trio (2002->2009), residency Hickinbotham’s Winery (2000-2006), and featured guests including Savannah Blount, Gianni Marinucci; Pete Mitchell, many others, and Australian jazz legends George Golla, Alan Lee and Don Burrows; “Dizzy’s” Big Band 2004 Led Simon Pilbrow Trio and ran a series of fundraiser jazz concerts for relief of world natural disasters 2010-2011. Solo piano fundraisers 2015-16 for projects in East Timor. More recently gigs with singer Lizzy Gascoigne and with saxophonist Ron Gillett in the Ron Gillett/Simon Pilbrow Duo. Also active in church music since 1974 and in recent years played on music team at New Peninsula Church (2009-2016). Many jazz compositions (including “Ballad for Thad”, “Tribute” (to Bill Evans) and “Studio City”). Selection of early compositions (pre-1988) are now permanently held in the US Library of Congress, in the Gerry Mulligan Collection. Check the collection at CD entitled Colours Of Sound - Simon Pilbrow with the Brent Fischer Orchestra (Clavo Records) - featuring 12 Simon Pilbrow compositions, with arrangements by Brent Fischer, recorded in Los Angeles, with a cast of brilliant mainly West Coast jazz musicians, was released on September 27 2017. You can buy the Colours of Sound CD via - check it out!!. MELBOURNE AUSTRALIA CD LAUNCH MARCH 23rd. "this high water mark recording is loaded with killer moves that keep your ears on the move” – Chris Spector, Mid West Record "vibrant and enthralling" - Shaun Brady, jazz journalist " warmth and melodic substance, arrangements that are plush …” -Musical Memoirs Medical Biography studied medicine Monash University, Australia, MBBS 1985; medical research 1988-1991, intl. publications, PhD 1993. Working as full time General Practitioner since 1992 married, 2 sons Gear Roland RD 700 digital/electronic piano Yamaha M1 acoustic piano

My Jazz Story

I was first exposed to jazz via playing Scott Joplin rags on piano in early 1970s, reading a book about Joplin and then how jazz evolved from this and the blues and marching bands through Louis Armstrong et al, and then seeking out the music on some wonderful jazz radio programs in Melbourne Australia in the 1970s, and via our next door neighbour Terry's jazz record collection, and then trying to play the music with my brother Tim--and that's where my love of this great music began. It hasn't stopped growing. The first jazz record I bought was the mid-1940s recording Sugar Hill Shuffle by Count Basie and His Orchestra. My advice to new listeners is to start with the earliest jazz and move forward--there are now 100 years of recorded jazz to enjoy, and it all makes a lot of sense if you listen chronologically, and your listening 'ears' will grow with the music Then whatever you hear will fit into a rich historical context... listen and enjoy all of it... and read all you can about the music and its creators--it will enrich your understanding and point you to the greatest musicians and the best music to listen to. Be prepared for a lot of exciting surprises and to be continually amazed by this great music. Keep on listening and enjoying it! If you find a musician or style you particularly enjoy, then just immerse yourself in it!

My Favorites

  1. 1. Thad Jones/Mel Lewis - Consummation
  2. 2. Chick Corea - Now he sings, Now he sobs
  3. 3. Chick Corea/Gary Burton - Crystal Silence, Duets
  4. 4. Herbie Hancock - Maiden Voyage; Speak Like A Child
  5. 5. Miles Davis - Birth of the Cool, Miles Ahead, My Funny Valentine, Kind
  6. of Blue, Porgy & Bess, Nefertiti
  7. 6. Oscar Peterson – Night Train; Exclusively with my Friends, esp.
  8. Travellin' On
  9. 7. Bill Evans – “Very Early” on 1975 National Jazz Ensemble; all Trio
  10. recordings with Scott La Faro; Affinity; duets with Tony Bennett – anything
  11. else he played
  12. 8. Miles Davis -
  13. 9. Lennie Tristano - Crosscurrents
  14. 10. Count Basie - Basie plays Hefti
  15. 11. Stan Getz - Focus, Sweet Rain, his late recordings with Kenny Barron,
  16. etc
  17. 12. Erroll Garner - Concert by the Sea
  18. 13. Pepper Adams - any recording as leader/sideman; Out of This World
  19. with Donald Byrd
  20. 14. Clare Fischer - Duality, Crazy Bird, Ritmo!, keep going & listen to all
  21. his works
  22. 15. Carl Saunders – Eclecticism, Out Of The Blue
  23. 16. Bill Holman – The Fabulous Bill Holman, Serendipity 18, everything
  24. else!
  25. 17. Woody Herman – 40th Anniversary
  26. 18. Woody Shaw – anything he played – incl. Rosewood, Woody III
  27. 19. Freddie Hubbard – Ready for Freddie
  28. 20. Wynton Marsalis – Hot House Flowers; Think of One; Black Codes of
  29. the Underground
  30. 21. Gary Foster/Alan Broadbent – Live At Maybeck
  31. 22. Wayne Shorter – Speak No Evil
  32. 23. Duke Ellington – Black, Brown And Beige, and other 1940s recordings
  33. 24. Dexter Gordon – Sophisticated Giant; 1960’s Black Lion & Blue Note
  34. recordings
  35. 25. Gerry Mulligan – all recordings of early quartets and CJO, Walk On
  36. Water
  37. 26. Christian Jacob – Beautiful Jazz
  38. 27. Ahmad Jamal – Live at the Pershing, all the Mosaic reissued material
  39. 28. Louis Armstrong – with Earl Hines - Weatherbird