Mark Simmonds Freeboppers - Fire

ARIA Winner 1995 - Best Jazz Album - 2 CD set

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Aria Award for best jazz album in 1995


2 cd set

An essential Australian jazz cd by one of the few genius' I've ever heard play. This is the one and only album by the Freeboppers - every song they recorded at this session is on this 2 disc album.

Mark's compositions, musicality and downight genius are heard on this album. He no longer performs or plays so if you want to hear the sound of one of the true greats of music this is place.

FIRE was voted by the Australian public as the best Australian Jazz Album. EVER. ................

With Scott Tinkler, Steve Elphick and Simon Barker. Recorded live at Electric Avenue Studios direct to a 2 track vintage analogue Studer and then mastered in 24 bit SBM this is a sonic marvel. The mix is what the band agreed on at the time and once it was down on tape that was it - no remixing or anything, so what you hear is what Mark and the band wanted you to hear. Everything that the tape captured is on the cd. And there's a lot to hear !

Turn it up LOUD to feel the Fire.

Music from this cd is featured in Emma Franz's documentary film "Intangible Asset Number 82"

Discogs profile:

Prominent in the Australian jazz scene throughout the 1970s, 80s and 90s, Mark Simmonds also worked in many other musical settings such as soul, funk groups The Dynamic Hepnotics (1985–1986), Jackie Orszaczky's Jump Back Jack, and also contemporary music groups such as Phil Treloar's Feeling to Thought, PipeLine and The Umbrellas. In addition to these, the Australian Rock database lists Simmonds as a member of Drain, Corroboree, Chris Turner Band, Silver Studs, Keys Orchestra, Moonlight, Ol' 55, Bentley's Boogie Band, and Renee Geyer Band. A post-Coltrane saxophonist with a huge sound, Simmonds led his own groups mostly under the name of The Freeboppers which held host to many of Australia’s most adventurous musicians. In December 1981, Mark Simmonds' Freeboppers played at the All Souls Feast Dance fundraising benefit at the Trades Union Club in Sydney, along with The Laughing Clowns, Dead Travel Fast, and performer and organizer, Jon Rose.

Two songs of The Freeboppers were featured on the KMA (Keys Music Association) compilation LP in 1982 entitled March of the Five Limbs. Mark Simmonds' Freeboppers released a full length double CD entitled 'FIRE' in 1993 on Birdland Records (BL002).The album won an Aria Award for Best Jazz Album in 1995. A song called Kings Cross Drag was included on the 1993 Vox Australis album, Beyond El Rocco : The Ultimate Australian Jazz Soundtrack.

Simmonds' collaborators include Steve Elphick (bass), Phil Treloar (percussion), David Adés (alto sax), Jamie Fielding (keyboards), Greg Sheehan (drums), Miroslav Bukovsky (trumpet), Peter Dehlsen (drums), Louis Burdett (drums), Peter Fine, Daniel Fine (sax), Steve Hunter (bass), Serge Ermöll (piano), Kees Steen (guitar), Rob Gador (bass), Michael Sheridan (guitar), Chris Abrahams (piano),[8] Cleis Pierce (violin), Samila Sithole (percussion), Andrew Gander (drums), Thierry Fossemalle (bass), Scott Tinkler (trumpet), Simon Barker (drums),[9] Azo Bell (guitar), Duncan Archibald (drums), Diane Peters (harp), Bobby Gebert (piano), Mark Shepherd (bass), Will Guthrie (drums), Scott Lambie (drums), Philip Rex (bass), Tony Buck (drums), Elliött Dalgléish (saxophones), Rick Caskey (bass), Charlie Owen (guitar).

In an article from the Sydney Morning Herald, 13 May 1987, jazz critic Gail Brennan wrote: "Mark Simmond's Freeboppers devastated the Basement with an unbroken hour-and-a-half orgy of rhythm and fire." The article reviews a double-bill with the Dale Barlow Quintet at Sydney's most renowned jazz venue, The Basement, on 11 May 1987. It goes on to say Mark "led a band that had played in public for a month (at the Piccadilly) and their confidence and cohesion were glorious to hear" and concludes; "It is not often that a reviewer of Australian jazz has no choice but to gush. This was one of those nights."

Mark retired from regular public performance in the early 2000s, but continued to play music with fellow musicians up until his death. His last live performance- a duet with Jeffrey Wegener, took place in Leichhardt, New South Wales, in 2019. Wegener says that Simmonds,on this occasion, "played magnificently".

Mark Simmonds was born in Christchurch, New Zealand. He passed away in Sydney, Australia, on 8 September 2020.



SKU 5021456037308
Barcode # 5021456037308
Brand Australian Independent - Birdland Records

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