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By Rhys Lett

What We are Listening to – Winter 2016

This week I asked the teachers of the Eastern Suburbs School of Music what they are currently listening to. It is always interesting to see the diverse music tastes among the 23 teachers of the Eastern Suburbs School of Music.

Jason Fados – Guitar – Boronia

I have currently been listening to the new Rival Sons album ‘Hollow Bones’ which I’m digging quite a lot. They were incredible when I saw them at Cherry Bar and as the support band for Black Sabbath. Also learning a lot of Ralph Stanley’s music on the banjo which has been extremely fun and challenging.

Daniel Lijnders – Bass – Boronia

Currently listening to David Bowie’s Greatest Hits. I have just completed performing in a music theatre show that required me to learn 30 Bowie tunes. Also the new Winery Dogs album featuring bass player Billy Sheehan.

Dan Slater – Drums – Boronia

I’ve been listening to a beautiful album called “Acoustic Fingerstyle Guitar” by Dylan Ryche. His sense of melody is incredible and every track visits a different place. It’s hard to believe Ryche plays the bass-line, chords and melody all at once.

David Hartney – Guitar/Piano/Singing/Ukulele – Boronia

Been listening to Best of Bowie (deluxe edition) for the David Bowie musical I played with my band. A good example of a musician who ‘got it right’ every time. Mainly thanks to good musicians and creative collaborations. One collaboration was with Steve Reich. This got me listening to Steve Reich’s ‘music of changes’. Very clever modern music that can take a simple rhythm and extend it into complex patterns of poly rhythms. A very hypnotic style of music that was very experimental when it was first composed. The influence of it can be heard in a lot of film soundtracks and even music for some to commercials.

I also recently had a good listen to Igor Stravinsky’s music for ballets ‘The Firebird’ and ‘The Rite of Spring’. Both revolutionary styles of music in their day and a big influence on John Williams, composer for ‘Star Wars’, ‘Jaws’, ‘Indiana Jones’, ‘Jurassic Park’, and many others.

Rhys Lett – Guitar – Boronia/Carrum Downs

Chuck Berry greatest hits. All rock lead guitar playing leads straight back to Chuck. Music that will always put me in a feel good mood.

 Dalys Mitten – Piano/Singing – Boronia

I’ve been enjoying Devon Townsends album ‘Casualties of Cool’. Such an eclectic composer. This reminds me that I don’t need to stick to one particular genre when writing. It is possible to tastefully imprint your own personal touch to various styles.

Luke Shore – Drums – Boronia

Currently listening to Tigran Hamasyan. I haven’t heard such wild frantic odd rhythmic grooves like these before. Just trying to figure out what tempos/time signatures some of tunes are in is a challenge in itself.

Van Marks – Drums – Carrum Downs

“What is Hip?” by Tower of Power. I am learning this song for my end of year recital for my 2nd year of the music degree I am studying. Learning to attack hits with the band as well as add dynamic change to my ghost notes. Also listening to “Nocturne” by Tesseract. From this I am learning to have better control over my left hand on the snare as well as alternating between odd and common times.

Elzna Mynhardt – Piano/Violin/Singing – Carrum Downs

I’m listening to “Tage wie diese” from die toten Hosen. Love their songs. Love playing there songs as well.

Hayden Blaby – Guitar – Boronia

My playlist latterly consists of a lot of country music such as Keith Urban and Zack Brown Band, as well as artists such as John Mayer, Bryan Adams and Bruce Springsteen. These are the type of artists I draw most inspiration from in my own writing.

Alex Gooding – Drums – Boronia

Been smashing Vulfpeck’s ‘Thrill of the Arts’ again recently. Back Pocket is sick. Their whole discography is great!