Jazz in Victoria – the music and stories

August 26, 2018
Close up of saxophone being played in a band (other band members blurred in background)

Music brings like-minded people together and helps people find their tribe. With community media playing music that would not be played by commercial stations, it’s often a social ‘glue’ that helps people form connection.

Alpine Radio immortalised the music and stories of Victorian jazz between 1920 and 1975 in a seven-part series. We proudly helped fund this program, documenting an important chapter in Australian music history. Listen to two episodes below and experience unique insights into the jazz scene in Victoria.

Episode 1
Where it all began, the early years of jazz in the 1920s and 1930s, traditional jazz and swing. This episode features two of the earliest recordings of jazz music in Victoria, Frank Coughlan and his Orchestra, Benny Featherstone, the influence of the visiting US troops during World War 2 and the fabulous Graeme Bell Jazz Band at the Uptown Club in North Melbourne.

Episode 2
More from John Sangster’s autobiography, as he heads overseas with the Bell Band as their drummer, and some of Sangster’s later music, then a listen to Graeme Bell playing ragtime piano, and introducing Tony Newstead and Ade Monsbourgh (Lazy Ade), both fantastic influences for many years on Victorian Jazz.

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