Playing for Datuk CL Chan’s book launch – audio
I was so pleased to be able to play background piano for the book launch for Datuk CL Chan’s book ‘Family Ties’, which is a history of five generations of his family, from their journey from China to Sandakan to Kota Kinabalu. Datuk Chan is the founder of Natural History Publications (Borneo) and he published… Continue reading
Meet Roaring Lion — My Reggae Family
“Jo, have a listen to Ambush In The Night and Top Rankin’. They’re the next on our list of new songs. Plenty of horns in the intros.” That’s Maui, our lead guitarist, giving me a heads-up on what to prepare for our next rehearsal. In Roaring Lion, you got to practise BEFORE you come to practice There are nine of us and… Continue reading
How I Became an Online Piano Teacher
I originally posted this article on Medium, but have now removed it from there. If you have considered taking your services online, you might be interested in the essay below. I Became an Online Piano Teacher Because of COVID Now I am living the dream Teaching piano is a lovely way to make a living,… Continue reading
Roaring Lion at Burleigh Heads BBQ Bazaar Sept 3 2021
I’m in the car with Mike and we’re on our way to the 5.00pm Roaring Lion sound check at BBQ Bazaar in Burleigh Heads. Google Maps says Kooralbyn to Burleigh Heads is an hour and forty. So say two hours with local road works and the school run later… iPad. IPad stand. Keyboard. Keyboard stand.… Continue reading
Watercolour by Shinji Ogata. Thanks Shinji!
I found this when clearing out some files! I was playing my friend Sophie’s piano, around 2015. Shinji Ogata is an artist in Brisbane. Here’s something about him. Continue reading
Piano lid up fully for the first time! Bachianinha No. 1, by Paulinho Nogueira
The grand piano has been in my home for 35 days but I hadn’t put up the lid fully until a few days ago, and I wanted to record playing it! This is a beautiful piece for classical guitar called Bachianinha No.1 written by Brazilian composer Paulinho Nogueira. This piano version came about when a… Continue reading
The Grande Dame arrives
Last week I wrote about my Beale going to a new home. Well that sure did happen and I was texting photos like this to Hanna saying, “They’re taking it now!” Later, she sent back… I’ve said before that buying the Beale felt like putting down roots in Australia – I wouldn’t buy an acoustic… Continue reading
Creatures of the Half Sleep – John Reeves Trio
Step into the world of jazz pianist John Reeves, who is releasing his first CD ‘Creatures of the Half Sleep’, a collection of original compositions arranged for accordion! Here, we geek out over his beautiful instrument, and his journey with it so far. The John Reeves Trio has Helen Svoboda on double bass and Aaron… Continue reading
Rehearsing with Bob Marley tribute band ROARING LION
This is a new journey for me… I can’t believe I’m getting to do this. It’s so cool. I went to rehearse with Gold Coast reggae band Roaring Lion. Well, I guess it was an audition really. Band leader Glen sent me a song list and I’ve been listening and playing and scribbling frantic notes… Continue reading
Piano Man. Taking the panel off my Beale — video
I removed the front panel of my Beale piano! I thought it would be fun to see all those moving hammers. Some of my students don’t know what’s inside an old-fashioned piano, so I played a short version of Billy Joel’s ‘Piano Man’, the quintessential pub piano bar song, for my kids. Here are a… Continue reading
Learning Debussy again
Learning a Debussy piece for the first time in 40 years. A student wants to learn Arabesque No. 1. I’m so grateful to her. Never thought I’d be doing this again. It’s lovely. ❤️ Continue reading
Nice work when you can get it
What a lovely surprise to walk into the Treasury Heritage Hotel and see this! And here we go… I wish I could take a better photo, but it’s too rude to hold my phone up close to a bunch of strangers. Hey, and we have a flyer too! Continue reading
I bought a Beale piano!
In April, I bought an upright piano! After moving around the world for decades with different digital pianos, I’m finally settled enough to own this big old, magical wooden box with 1,200 moving parts. Now, I am home. I drove all over Brisbane and the Gold Coast checking out pianos advertised on Gumtree. When I… Continue reading
Chookas! It’s an Aussie word!
Chookas! This is what Aussies say to each other before a performance, instead of: “Break a leg”. I don’t know what it means but they said it before “Breaking Up Is Hard To Do”, and before the QMF Under This Sky performances. For sure we will be yelling it from the rafters at the opening… Continue reading
Joanna is British Australian. Her early career was in financial news in London. That ended in 2008. Joanna moved to Sabah, her parents’ birthplace, where she wrote a blog about musicians, which became a book. Joanna came to Australia in 2012 and started this blog — her second. These days, she writes mostly about music, her garden, and trips to Sabah. Oh, and Wookie the Havanese.
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