Cool Canberra Jazz …

… In the Vines Grape_Vine02

In a past life I was somewhat involved in music and jazz and performed around the Canberra region. Earlier this year I visited the Merimbula Jazz Festival (for a jazz hit and a bit of nostalgia), and found a few terrific Canberra performers well worth seeing if you get the chance. My original article appeared in Surya Magazine, but I’ve been following these bands and thought it was time to update their news, and flag some upcoming awesome gigs, and special events, including a few at local wineries!

In 2 Deep is a duo with very talented pianist and composer Michael Dooley and vocalist Rachel Thorne, a Canberra singer and songwriter. With a bit of a Latin beat on the side the band performs covers and originals, and it has to be said, that while their covers are good, their originals are damn good. Dooley writes most of the originals which takes you through a range of emotions from the poignancy of ‘Soliloquy’ to a bit of kick-ass humour and satire. The duo sometimes pulls in extra local musos for bigger gigs and a bigger ‘band’ sound.

In 2 Deep at Merimbula (June 2014)

In 2 Deep at Merimbula (June 2014)

Some recent exciting news is that In 2 Deep have been musically involved in the ACT anthology movie Locks of Love which screens at the Palace Electric Cinema on Saturday 29 November—check Palace Cinema website for times and tickets. The beautiful song ‘Edge of Time’ played over the movie credits is performed by In 2 Deep. The movie was fully produced in Canberra and the screenings will be preceded by an awesome ‘red carpet’ event!

You can catch In 2 Deep at Dickson Tradies every second Friday with their next gig on 31 October. They will also be performing at Lerida Winery on Sunday 9 November, from 12.30 – 3pm, as part of the winery‘s Jazz & Shiraz event.

Shades of Monday is a 20 plus member a capella group that has been singing together for just over two years, but this year had a turnover of 10 new singers which means that most of the songs for Merimbula had to be learnt ‘off book’ in just a couple of months—a mammoth task and one that they pulled off expertly—under the able baton of conductor Camilo Gonzalez who also plays a mean guitar. There is a lot of individual talent in this group with some superb soloists, and talented musos including a pianist, sax, and ukulele appearing out of the group to accompany a few numbers. Although singing mostly jazz, SOM also cover the classics, contemporary, pop, and folk.

Shades of Monday, Merimbula (July 2014)

Shades of Monday, Merimbula (June 2014)

SOM’s next concert is Shades in the Vines at Four Winds Vineyard Murrumbateman on Saturday 1 November at 6pm. You can purchase food and wine on the night, or bring a picnic (no BYO though—it is a winery after all), and coffee and yummy cakes will also be on sale.

Tickets for the concert are available from

Rhythm Syndicate celebrated its 20th anniversary a few years ago and is now, no doubt, gearing up for its silver 25 year celebration next year! Accompanied by both aforementioned Michael Dooley on piano and Camilo Gonzales as conductor, Rhythm Syndicate’s main repertoire is made up of jazz classics and gospel swing and includes both a capella and accompanied. However, the group has no problem stepping outside its jazz comfort zone to cover a range of other styles, be they movie themes, classic 60s, musical theatre, and contemporary. They also currently have vacancies for alto’s, basses, and tenors—so if you’ve got the voice; they’ve got the music!

Rhythm Syndicate at Merimbula (June 2014)

Rhythm Syndicate at Merimbula (June 2014)

Rhythm Syndicate has a couple of gigs coming up later this year. On Sunday 2 November you can hear them in Sunday Jazz @ the High Court of Australia where they will be performing a mix of jazz standards and original compositions by Michael Dooley. If you can’t make that date, you can join them in celebrating Christmas cheer at Lerida Winery on Sunday 14 December from 12.45 – 2.15pm.


Café Lerida bookings required at 6295 6640

Photographs by LFW

Images sourced


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