21.4 C
Byron Shire
March 6, 2021

Ukulele master Azo a favourite

Latest News

Not quite ‘too late’

Desmond Bellamy, PETA Australia Sir David Attenborough, the world’s most famous naturalist, has just addressed the United Nations Security Council to...

Other News

PM forced

Narelle Rendalls, Ballina With reference to the recent serious sexual assault allegations in Canberra, our Prime Minister has a lot to...

Bangalow blackspot puts school children at risk

Will action ever be taken to protect school kids getting on and off the bus on Lismore Road, Bangalow as trucks fly by at 80km/h?

Croquet club gets new turf as it prepares to host NSW championship

The Byron Bay Croquet Club is ready for another big year that includes new turf, hosting a state championship and building on last year’s membership growth.

Cartoon of the week – 3 March, 2021

We love to receive letters, but not every letter will be published; the publication of letters is at the discretion of the online and print letters editors.

Be proud of Ballina, help clean up our beaches

This Sunday, 7 March, Ballina Coastcare is inviting everyone who cares about Ballina's environment to Step Up To Clean Up, and join a special event for Clean Up Australia Day.

Naming Ben Franklin

Cecily McGee, Mullumbimby It's very misleading for the Byron Shire Echo to repeatedly give Ben Franklin free media coverage,  as in...

Alistair ‘Azo’ Bell began playing music as a child in the 1960s and Jimi Hendrix and Jose Feliciano were among his early influences. Since then he has played guitar in jazz, blues, rock, reggae, hi-life and latin groups; worked in free-improvising ensembles; plus recording and theatrical performances. Azo is also a master of ukulele and musical saw, and a designer and builder of fretted instruments.

Azo-2In the early 70s Azo was among the first students in the NSW Conservatorium of Music’s Jazz Studies Program directed by American saxophonist Howie Smith. He played guitar with fusion group Spacecraft and travelled and played music through Australia, the USA and Central America.

In 1980, he was a founding member of the notorious Keys Music Association. Azo focused on improvisation, playing with Keys, Mark Simmonds’s Freeboppers and Rated X, working with musicians such as Miroslav Bukovsky, Steve Elphick and Chris Abrahams.

In the mid 80s Azo worked with Senegalese drummer Aziz N’diaye, Graeme Lowndes’s Holy Cats and others. He developed a solo show for World Expo 88 in Brisbane featuring musical saw and junk instruments.

From 1993 to 96 he was with soul-groove band Bellydance, playing on both their albums, One Blood and Babylon Mixed Business. It was here he began to refine his unique ukulele style.

Azo formed the Old Spice Boys with Billy Milroy and Tim Reeves in 1997. The trio has become a festival favourite in Australia and abroad.

In 2002 Azo toured in the USA, performing solo at Global Ukulele Summit and 2002 Ukulele Expo in New York City. He performed with Old Spice Boys at Rainforest World Music Festival in Sarawak (Borneo) in 2005, and in The Famous Spiegeltent at Edinburgh Fringe Festival 2006 (Scotland). In 2007 Azo appeared solo at Phuket International Blues Festival in Thailand, with Old Spice Boys at Rurhrfestspiele in Germany, and solo at the New Zealand International Ukulele festivals (2007, 2008 and 2011) with the cream of the world’s ukulele players.

Azo is heard on the soundtracks of Winter of Our Dreams (1982), Michael Leunig Animated (2002), ABC TV’s Sea Change and East of Everything, Sydney Dance Company’s Directors Cut (2006) and on recordings by Jimmy Little, Jeff Lang, Mic Conway, Missy Higgins and many more.

You can see Azo tonight at the Gollan Hotel in Lismore.

 

 


Support The Echo

Keeping the community together and the community voice loud and clear is what The Echo is about. More than ever we need your help to keep this voice alive and thriving in the community.

Like all businesses we are struggling to keep food on the table of all our local and hard working journalists, artists, sales, delivery and drudges who keep the news coming out to you both in the newspaper and online. If you can spare a few dollars a week – or maybe more – we would appreciate all the support you are able to give to keep the voice of independent, local journalism alive.

LEAVE A REPLY

Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

Suspicion and belief

Fast Buck$, Coorabell My suspicion is that the mayor and the senior staff have been helping Michael Lyon become electable as mayor by scripting his...

Optics

I Menahemi, Myocum In his editorial Hans Lovejoy says – ‘the optics from The Echo have been and hopefully always will be independent.’ As long as more...

Suffolk Park pump track

Jinesh Attard, Suffolk Park Many in the local community of hillside Suffolk Park have come to understand the impact the pump track will have on our...

New Greens team

Matthew O’Reilly President of CABS and a proud member of the NEW Byron Greens team It seems that some readers have taken my comments on the...