VINCE JONES has been described as the “one voice in Australian jazz more recognised than any other”.
With a 40-year career spanning eighteen albums and an ARIA for Best Jazz Album under his belt, you can see why.
Originally from Scotland, Jones immigrated to Wollongong when he was a child and later moved to Melbourne aged 20 to pursue a career in music.
Best known for his singing, Jones also plays a variety of instruments including the trumpet, flugelhorn and flumpet.
“I’ve departed from the use of any word that has ‘trump’ in it,” he jokes.
“I’m not going to play trumpet because it has the name of the current president of the US in it.
“So my current instrument is the corumpet–a cross between the trumpet and the cornet”.
Jones says his family was very musical and growing up his father was a big influence.
He says it’s now come full circle with his two daughters passionate about music.
“You can see it on their face: they go into a state, their eyes roll back. A bit like when I was a kid,” he says.
“I still learn and listen and transcribe, every day I’m doing something to develop my ear and my knowledge of music. It’s a lifelong pursuit.”
“You’ve got to be disciplined if you want to be good at anything. The human brain is amazing, it’s an extraordinary machine between our ears. You have to do it everyday, never have a day off”.
Jones’ mastery of music and incredible ear is evident in his latest album A Personal Selection, a retrospective of his entire career.
“The music I play has folk music in there, even little bits of soul music in it, and lots of jazz. Let’s make up a word, ‘fojazzsoul’”, he jokes.
“I’m not a fatalist songwriter. I like to inject a little twist of hope in the songs”.
Recently his music has touched on topical issues like the environment and global conflict.
“As I’ve gotten older, I feel there’s always a better way than war.
“It’s very difficult to maintain world peace; somehow having non-acrimonious relationships with other countries and other people”.
Vince Jones and The Heavy Hitters will play Freo Social on Parry Street, Fremantle next Sunday (October 6).
by ALEX MURFETT