MUSICIAN: Alex Boneham.
MUSICIAN: Alex Boneham. Contributed

These Vampires live on jazz

THE Vampires are coming to Byron Bay to offer their new take on jazz.

The ARIA & Australian Music Prize nominated jazz-world band is formed by saxophonist Jeremy Rose plus trumpet player Nick Garbett (both from The Beautiful Girls and The Strides) plus bassist Alex Boneham.

We spoke to Boneham about their show.

What can we expect from your Byron Bay show?

We're really looking forward to coming back to Bryon for this show. You never know what to expect with The Vampires because every night is different, but you can be sure there will be fiery improvisation mixed with grooves from a mix of genres - reggae to Afro-Cuban, Balkan to Jazz. Most of all we'll be having a lot of fun!

Jazz has had a resurgence lately. Do you think it needed a modern touch like The Vampires seem to be doing?

Absolutely. Our goal is to play music that reflects our personal stories and interests so of course it's going to be updated for our times.

That being said, we're all deeply informed and love the jazz greats from that era - Miles Davis, Thelonious Monk, Ornette Coleman, to name a few.

I think there are a particularly high number of jazz artists making exciting music now that is speaking to people, especially younger audiences. I'm really excited about that.

What was it like studying at the Thelonius Monk Institute in LA?

It was honestly surreal a lot of the time. Standing on stage in front of 17000 people at the Hollywood Bowl, wedged between Herbie Hancock's piano and Wayne Shorter sitting next to me, must have been one of the wildest experiences of my life. It was such a unique opportunity to spend time with these living legends.

Since then I've been fortunate to make some incredible music in Los Angeles and beyond.

Lately I've been performing with Billy Childs and we're headed to Japan when I get back from this tour.

Wherever I am playing though, a part of me always wants to be back by the beach in Australia! You never lose that!