Is this your first time performing in Geelong?
It is my first Geelong performance as a jazz vocalist – I would travel to Geelong to perform with the Australian Children’s Choir when I was younger. It’s always exciting travelling to perform for new audiences.
Which Jazz artist inspires you the most?
This is a very challenging question to answer as I admire so many. But Kurt Elling is a hero of mine. He continues to inspire me both on and off stage, and I’ve had the honour of chatting with him a number of times whilst in Melbourne. An incredible musician and generous human being.
What first got you hooked on jazz?
I turned to jazz later in high school after attending the Generations In Jazz Festival in South Australia. At the time, I had begun studying with the great Bob Sedergreen who was and continues to be a huge influence on me. The interaction and collaboration involved in playing jazz is what drew me in, and I was inspired by the freedom of expression it offered.
What was it like recording your debut album with the ABC Jazz team?
Absolutely incredible yet terrifying. I am so very lucky to have gotten the opportunity to not only record with Mal Stanley and ABC Jazz, but also create my dream record with Bob, Ben Robertson, Tony Floyd and Steve Sedergreen. It really pushed me out of my comfort zone so early in my career, but the experience was invaluable. On to the next one!
What’s in store for the remainder of the year?
I’m currently finishing my Bachelor of Music (Honours) at the Sir Zelman Cowen School Of Music, Monash University, and will soon begin preparing to complete my Masters in Jazz Performance. In the meantime, I’ll be returning to the Paris Cat Jazz Club with my quartet (Oct 12, 9.30pm) to share some new music, as well as reuniting with Bob Sedergreen and Ben Robertson (Lido Jazz Room, Nov 22) to revisit music from The First Song.
Amelia will be performing at the Victorian Railway Institute Hall with an ensemble of leading Geelong jazz musicians on October 13 1pm. Scones, cheese and Jack Rabbit wines will be available from the bar. To book, go to callumwatson.com.au/geelongjazz